I must be getting used to this camping thing. I think I actually got a few hours of sleep. This is the third time camping this calender year. Likely the last until October. First photo of the day, taken at 7:42 am. I think its after I came back from the car with the food, stored in a bear, and raccoon, proof container. That may have helped me sleep better.
I got the grill going, patiently waited for the coffee to perk, and heated up the leftovers.
8:30, breakfast is served. I used the time waiting for it to cook carrying a load of stuff-the innards of my tent, sleeping bag, blanket, sleeping pads, and pillow, to the car. Drafted the first few paragraphs of Saturday's Tale as I ate. The plate/skillet was an all purpose one this weekend. I had it, and a knife and fork. Forgot plates and a spatula. And something to soak the corn on the cob in. So, Saturday, I soaked the corn in the skillet, then cooked it, and the steak directly on the grills-as in stand up grill and fire pit. Potatoes, onions and carrots directly om the coals. Used the skillet handle, which comes off, as a spatula. For breakfast, the skillet was cutting board, cooking surface, and plate. Not exactly, FDA approved.
On the bike at 9. Rode a different route than I had Saturday, going north on Pine Road. Saw another biker where Sand, Grade, and Pine Roads meet. I let him get ahead of me. Went 2 and a half miles before turning back.
I made my usual stop at Shark Tooth Spring.
A bear had visited the Spring. There was another poop pile on the trail.
Springs video isn't loading. I'll try putting it on my Facebook page
Shark Spring is adjacent to a Florida Trail campsite. Has to be one of the nicest areas on the entire trans-Florida hiking trail
Back on the bike, I was on Loop Road when I saw the deer.
I pedaled Loop Road the opposite direction then I had Saturday.
A sandy hill, a crane. A sand hill crane in its element. At the Oaks Camp site. Which was occupied on Saturday. I planned to introduce myself, and ask if I could use the facilities. Better than digging a hole and putting the TP in a bag to carry out. The site was empty. So I got to use the luxurious facility. Even has hand sanitizer.
The camp site
The Oaks is a "group" site. Up to 20 people. Not on the water. A mile from Moccasin Springs, which is limited to 5 persons. I returned there at 10:30, after a 7.10 mile ride.
Path to my camp site.
Into Blackwater Creek at 10:40, paddled up Creek
After 15 minutes, a fork, the second one on the way up steam. The right side is too shallow to paddle, ok for ibis.
I paddled up the left channel, until here.
This is new, I've been ale to paddle a little further up Creek in the past. Unlike the Creek down stream from Moccasin Springs, this section is not cleared. Unless you do it yourself.
I turned around, paddled to the first fork, and paddled up it to here.
If I had more energy, and a saw, this would be easy to get through. I turned around.
Paddled past my campsite, and around a bend saw a blue and white kayak. Has to be Joanne B.
It was. With her brother and sister-in-law on a family Easter outing. She took my picture.
I paddled just past the bridge and day use area, hoping to see the big gator that likes to sun across from a Florida Trail campsite. Joanne told me she had seen a large alligator neat there. It had leapt into the Creek. And, when I went by, was probably still underwater.
I turned back at noon. Here is an inventory of what I saw over the weekend.
alligator swallowtail kite bared owl red shouldered hawk blue heron great blue heron tri colored heron green heron limpkin ibis osprey vulture pileated wood pecker great egret turtle raccoon
Probably forgot a few.
Returned to Moccasin Springs at 12:30.
Sat in my chair, watching the Creek, resting up to break camp and load the car. It's 4 miles to the entrance.
Bear Pond is just inside the entrance. I put my trash bag in the bin at the picnic shelter, leaving the Forest at 2 PM. I'll be back, to kayak and bike. No camping, unless I get a crazy notion to sleep in the summer heat, humidity, and thunder storms, until Fall.