Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

On Our Own

January 21, 2012
Myakka River State Park
Site 80

Today was our first day without our events coordinator so
our plan wasn’t too creative.
We’d take our bikes starting at the entrance station and
go down every road we hadn’t already been down.

David wanted to check out all the CCC buildings of course.
So we stopped at this restroom for pictures.


Further down we found the cabin road.
All of these buildings were built by the CCC
out of local Cabbage Palms. 
They are very interesting.



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We rode on down and crossed the bridge
where we found a lot of gator activity.

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I took these as one swam under the bridge
and I was looking down.

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On the far side of the bridge was a small parking area
we thought was for folks wanting to walk out on the bridge. 
But further inspection showed
it also had an unnamed trail that turned
out to be a wonderful walk along the river.

We pulled in, locked up the bikes and were off
down the path

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With birds and more gators

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See him over on the far bank?

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And there were others on our side as well.
Like these two that we spied as we walked along
the shore.  We altered our route and went
along the inside trail to get these
pictures through the bushes.

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Looking pretty well fed I’d say.
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Back out on the park road, a short way further on,
we decided to take the bikes
down Ranch House Road.

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Where we learned about Sweet Meadow Pastures,
a 19,000 acre farm owned by Bertha Palmer.

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Bertha had 13 farm hands including her farm manager
She raised Brahma Bulls and fenced in her land,
the latter an unknown practice at the time.
Pretty unusual occupation for a single woman
at that time.
Way to go Bertha!

Further on down the road we met a group
of hard riding young men.

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We turned around at that point as
the trails became more suitable for
the mountain bikers
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We biked back toward the park road.

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The beginning part Ranch House Road
that appears to have been the
farm entrance was a lovely ride.

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Next stop was back at the Outpost for Butter Pecan
ice cream.  We split a cone this time.  We’ve
now had 4 of their 8 flavors.
We were both eating, so no one was taking pictures.

While there, we enjoyed the birds in the boat canal
which the Outpost Overlooks.
The Roseate Spoonbill and the Heron


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The wood stork and the Egret

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Somehow I’m always surprised that the stork
doesn’t have a more attractive face.

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If this is the one they told us brings babies,
I think the babies would all be scared.
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We walked along the shore line to the weir
and found a group of a dozen storks.


one of whom was sneaking up on this fisherman

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Did you know they had pink feet?
Wonder what that’s all about?

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A handsome couple??
Guess they think so.

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The sun was getting low in the sky and
it was time to call it a day.
Before we got back on the bikes to
ride home, we checked out the
under renovation kiosk next to the weir

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where they had this information posted.
I’ll leave you with these thoughts.
(click the photo to make it larger)
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Dog owners and dog lovers take heed.

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  1. My heavens u sure see alot of alligators, close up too!!! Doesn't it ever worry u? Even when u are out in the kayak?

  2. WOW... What a great day!! You have now been promoted or it might be demoted to 'Event Coordinator' ;o))

    Definitely need to return to Myakka and we now know that you need to stay in places for more than just a few days. There is always not enough time otherwise.

    Enjoying Rainbow Springs...but still like Silver River more. Heading out again early this morning, maybe my opinion will be change;o))

    Ice Cream AGAIN!!! Don't let Bill know ;o)))

  3. Yikes, good thing you don't have a puppy ;-) Maybe pink-footed storks bring the girl babies?!

  4. You did pretty good without your tour planner!
    Even with the sign not showing "humans" as a source of food for them, I'm surprised we don't hear more about alligator-human encounters ... after all, we know that not everyone uses common sense around these animals.

  5. Love the pics. What a great day at Myakka. If you get a chance, post a couple pictures of the outpost. They were building a new one when we left Florida.

  6. I like the shot of the gator from above. Enjoyed your bike ride. We're really thinking of you two today.

  7. We tried and tried to wait out the spoonbills that show up at 10,000 Islands preserve, but they didn't come before we had to leave. Great photos! And I love the gator ones, too!

  8. What great gator photos! I'm afraid I'd be a bit hesitant to get that close in the kayak. Be careful out there :)

  9. The stork portion made me laugh outloud. Great post :)

  10. Interesting tidbit about Bertha Palmer. Girls rule!

    Love the rosy wings on the Roseate Spoonbill.


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