Thursday, May 29, 2014

Natural Florida

I took Piper for a tour around a local park last week to see some of what natural, unspoiled Florida looks like! I figured it was going to be pretty different from her home in the desert.

The park is right on the edge of Tampa Bay, and is part of the the Tampa Bay Estuary. There's a lot of waterways around for launching canoes and kayaks plus more typical flat oak scrublands as well.

The entrance to the park even has a canoe on the sign!
You can climb up to the observation deck overlooking the water.

And here's the view! This is part of the estuary that feeds into Tampa Bay itself.

Ground level view of the water. You can see all the mangrove "islands." Mangroves grow right out of the water in clusters. There's no actual land beneath the trees. But sea birds nest in them.

Boardwalk over the transition from marsh and waterways to scrublands.
Some of the scrubland trails surrounding the waterways.

Because it's RIGHT on the Bay, there are warning signs 13 feet tall telling you a hurricane can cause a storm surge all the way up to the line on the sign! See how tiny Piper looks?

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