David Johnson's Travel Blog
Bicycle Trip 1999
Okefenokee 2002
Anza-Borrego 2003
Texas 2003
Road Trip West 2003
Sequoia National Park 2004
Hiking Florida 2005
08/20  Let's hike Florida!
08/24  Welcome to the Conch Republic!
08/24  Goodbye, Key West
08/25  Live and learn
08/26  Wade to breakfast
08/26  The dogs are barking.
08/27  Ba-HE-ah
08/28  Stealth Camping II
08/29  Who let the hogs out?
08/30  Walk a hundred miles in my shoes
08/31  Goodbye, Keys
09/02  I AM the minority
09/03  Easy come, easy go
09/04  So what is an aquacate?
09/05  Almost there
09/06  Wisdom or Cowardice?
09/07  The smell that protects
09/08  The Florida Trail!
09/10  Radio Resurrection
09/10  To the Horizon and Beyond!
09/11  Day on the Dikes
09/12  Hat Number Three
09/13  Just another day.
09/14  The Everglades
09/14  Good day for critters
09/15  Camping With Cows
09/16  The sounds of airboats in the night.
09/17  The grass really IS greener on the other side.
09/18  Some Math
09/19  Four days until Christmas!
09/20  Hard day, mentally.
09/21  Plan B
Nomadic 2005
Bicycle Trip 2009
Bicycle Trip 2010
Nomadic 2010
Little Bicycle Trip 2011
Wisconsin Bicycle Trip 2011
Bicycle Trip 2011
Nomadic 2011
Kayak Trip 2012
Nomadic 2012
Liverworks Productions
Nomadic 2013
Liverworks Productions
Texas Pig Hunting
Bicycle Trip 2014
Bicycle Trip 2015
Biking West 2015
Chickens and Pheasants 2016
Biking About 2016
New Zealand 2016
Kayak Trip 2017

The Everglades

2005-09-14

For several days, I have been trekking across the Everglades via levies and roads. While not as engrossing as actual trail hiking, the scenic roads (Loop Road and Turner River Road) offer excellent glimpses into the wilderness of the Everglades.

It's flat here. It's about the most horizontal place I've ever been. Major elevation changes consist of three feet, and those are all invisible now, anyway, due to the high water.

The land is broken into prairie and small patches of woods. Often, you can see great distances. There are pine and palm and other shrub-like trees. Wherever there is cypress there is guaranteed to be deeper than average water. One thing about trees here: They don't offer shade. About 1 PM, when the sun is the most grueling, shade cannot be found. Many of the trees' leaves are so thin and sparse that the sunlight shines right on through. Other trees (like palms) will block the sun, but they're low to the ground and embraced by much thick foliage, rendering them unfriendly resting spots.

Critters are constant. During the day, you are never out of sight of many large birds (egrets, storks, hawks, vultures, etc) and insects and lizards. There is often splashing as unseen critters make hasty escape into the canals.

At night, there is always something slashing or splunking or creeping about or growling deep, evil growls or screaming at the top of its lungs. Eventually you grow used to these noises and sleep through the night.

Day and night, the insects are busy with their buzzing and clicking and chirping and other creative sounds.

The days push into the nineties, but there is often a breeze, and the unpredictable clouds sometimes offer relief. At night, the temperature drops into the high seventies. The humidity isn't as bad here as it was in the Keys.

The water is clean and clear (okay, maybe slightly greenish) and good for drinking. I usually filter before drinking, but it probably isn't necessary (if you don't mind little bits of stuff suspended in your drink).

Roads continue arrow-straight into the horizon. That in itself takes some getting used to. While hiking, you may see a large tree or structure but not reach it for an hour or more.

There is one kind of rock here: limestone. It's white. It's hard. It's somewhat porous. And it's everywhere. At any give point in the Everglades, you can stop, dig through the muck with your hands and reach a limestone floor. That's what keeps you from sinking when you hike across the wetlands.

The Everglades are something to see. I recommend visiting and taking advantage of the many tours offered.

 
contact me at le@liverworks.com
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