2012-11-30 29 -82
Publically accessible land in the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's Watermelon Pond
I should be there around 2:00 pm. The aerial makes it look as if I can drive right on top of it but I'm betting those tracks are FWC vehicles and I'll have to park out on the road.
Those tracks on the aerial were from FWC vehicles (as well as fire breaks). But I never would have driven down the road anyway. In several areas the sugar sand would have swallowed my car up to the axels and I was alone and mostly in the middle of nowhere. Foolishness and carelessness don't mix.
It was a nice mile hike (round trip) in any case. With temperatures in the mid 70's there were just enough spots of shade to keep me comfortable. I brought along a hammer to pound the marker stake into the ground but left it in the car. If I came across a FWC officer I was well within my right to be there (it being a public area) but a lone male walking around carrying a hammer would possibly be suspicious. And a youth spent full of recorded indiscretion has a way of keeping me scrupulously within bounds these days. Then again, carrying around a wooden stake and a hammer enables the perfect excuse...vampires.
So, target reached I planted the stake in the sand and snapped a few pictures. I was well aware when I stepped off the trail that this was a perfect spot for the Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake. I narrowly avoided a 6 footer a few years back and still haven't lost the respect gained in that episode. Those things are far better at hiding than I am at finding. And this time of year with the cool nights and sunny days can really bring them out.
It is a beautiful area and perhaps in the coming months I'll take the family out there.
I've never been out here before even though it is somewhat notorious.
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