March 13, 2017
Driving south on Rt 27 wasn’t great with lots of traffic and frequent stop lights. The time of travel wasn’t bad, and we arrived at Highland Hammock about 1:00. After lunch and getting settled, we drove through the park to get a feel for the place. It is very cool with very old trees overhanging the road. There are huge live oaks with horizontal limbs begging to cradle a panther. We took one short hike along a boardwalk through the marsh and a creek finding an Egret hunting for fish and an alligator resting right beside the walkway.
We enjoyed visiting with a couple, Bob and Jane(?) who just bought an Airstream Bambi. Bob also just bought a Nissan HD which I have been reading about, so I was very interested. I’ll be looking for one when I get back home. Then right behind us were Judy and ? in a brand new Interstate. His TV wouldn’t come on, so I tried to help him, but we couldn’t sort out the problem. Probably a fuse.
Watching TV after dinner, a tornado warning was out for the west cost just to our west. That’s a little scary, so we kept our eye on that, put the awning up and closed everything up. I was in too much of a hurry in the heavy rains putting the awning up. One of the tension rods wasn’t completely released, and broke as the heavy spring slammed it home. We got some heavy rains in the night, but no big winds. Duck Tape held the tension rod in place, but I went on the internet and ordered a part from Iowa, hoping it would arrive at our campground in the Keys.
We biked and hiked this beautiful park for three days. It’s funny how things work out. The only reason we came was because there was no other vacancy in ANY other state park in Florida. Well, this park is quite a prize. The campground is quite nice with lots of space and shade. The “Hammock” is a very special place, like a tropical garden. I am always looking for animals, but this place is all about trees you just don’t see any more. Orange trees grow throughout the forrest, but something in the soil makes them very bitter. Some animal likes them though. There are little game trails around each tree, and no fruit remains on the ground. Armadillos come out about 2:00 in the afternoon. There was one right behind our campsite. We met some very nice campers here. The rangers were very nice. The bathrooms are a little old, but they plan to renew them. There is a new shower house at the top of the hill. This is a great and unique park with a nice little visitor’s center. Don’t miss it!