An Early Drive To Flamingo , A Crocodile And My Last Sunset In South Florida
I was on the road early Tuesday morning on my recent visit to South Florida. It was my last full day in the Everglades and I was driving to Flamingo, the southernmost point in the Everglades National Park. It is about an hour drive from my hotel in Florida City. As usual, I try to be in the cypress swamp near the Pay-hay-okee overlook to watch the sunrise. I love driving through the desolate everglades in the dark and twilight.
and waited for sunrise. It wasn’t a spectacular sunrise, but still a beautiful one, they all are. Here is a link to some more photos of the sunrise. Florida Day Eight Everglades sunrise January 17 2023.
I soon arrived at Flamingo and drove to Eco Lake near the campground. I have seen many wading and song birds on past visits, including roseate spoonbills. Not on this cool morning visit. There were no birds wading on the scenic lake.
On my previous hikes in prior years, the trail would be dry and sandy. These past hikes were in March. This year the trail was wet and muddy. And there were not as much wildlife. I have seen many song birds, hawks and ospreys here in the past.
a few palm warblers, but that was it. This is a link to a gallery on my blog website with some more photos of the birds I saw on my Flamingo visit. Florida Day Eight Everglades Flamingo birds January 17 2023.
I also saw this cool orchard orb weaver spider. I usually see a lot more spiders on this hike, and a lot more mosquitoes. There weren’t any mosquitoes out on this cool, windy morning. I hiked out 2 1/2 miles on the trail and then returned to the trailhead.
I had decided to take a boat tour , but realized I had to probate a will by zoom in Pennsylvania in the afternoon. There was no internet or cell service in Flamingo. I was still doing some work for my Law Office while on this trip. It was a good thing I didn’t get on the boat. I would have never been back in time. Unfortunately, I had to end my visit to Flamingo. Here is a gallery with more photos form my hike in Flamingo. Florida Day Eight Everglades Flamingo hike January 17 2023.
I returned to my room. probated the will by zoom and relaxed at the pool for a little while. It was my last night in the Everglades so I wanted to watch the sunset somewhere. So I drove back to the Lucky Hammock parking lot and saw there was also a trail on the canal on the other side of the highway. I parked there and learned it was part of the Frog Pond Wildlife Management Area.
I started walking along the canal and soon realized I should have been on the other side. There were open fields on my side of the canal. On the other side there were trees growing above the canal, and I could see and hear a lot of bird activity in the tree branches. I didn’t think I would see any wildlife in the open fields on my side of the canal. I was wrong. As I walked along the deep blue waters of the canal I came to a wooded area and here I saw this red shouldered hawk perched on a utility wire. along the trail.
I continued my hike and I kept seeing large fish jumping out of the waters of the canal. I tired but couldn’t get a photo the jumping fish. I have no idea what kind they were. After I hiked out about a mile I decided to hike back. On the way I saw this male red-winged black bird, also perched on a utility wire.
It was so quiet and peaceful. I was the only one out on the trail. It was a perfect way to end my last full day in the Keys and Everglades. I love this place more every time I visit. Here is a link to a gallery with some more photos from my sunset hike. Florida Day Eight Frog Pond hike January 17 2023.
then a delicious and filling seafood pasta. You know it was filling when I didn’t order dessert. I edited some photos and retired early, looking forward to my last hike in the Everglades in the morning.
“Those who find beauty in all of nature will find themselves at one with the secrets of life itself.” — L. Wolfe Gilbert