Wednesday February 28th 2018
I got one more walk around the campground in before packing up for my move south to the Army Corp of Engineers Ortona South Campground in Moore Haven, FL. On the walk I caught sight of a disturbance in the otherwise placid lake surface. It was well off shore but looked like a log was moving across the water under its own power. I took a picture and cropped it to confirm my assumption that I was watching an alligator. So I’ve satisfied my first gator of the year milestone.
My travel day began with my departure from Lake Louisa State Park at 10:30 and ended 140 miles later around 2:30 in the afternoon. The biggest challenge on the drive was finding a suitable gas station. The first one I tried was too busy for the narrow confines I needed to maneuver around. I continued straight through and out the other side. The next station I had already scoped out on Monday. It worked out fine from a navigation point of view. From a cost perspective it could have been better. I made two credit card passes at $75 each for a total of just over sixty gallons. I didn’t swipe the card again to add the remaining few gallons needed for a full tank. Using the card twice in a row at the same pump trips a fraud alert now and then. I can only imagine the alarms that would go off for three swipes in a row.
Most of today’s route was south on US 27 through citrus groves, ranch land and strip malls. In the strip mall sections it was a steady progressing of traffic lights. Since I have a longer stopping distance than the average car, I don’t come all the way up to the speed limit between lights. The cars go a little crazy getting around the RV with a lot of very quick lane changes. Somewhere on the trip south my refrigerator door popped open. Luckily it didn’t make a mess. Only a couple of containers ended up on the floor and they didn’t open. This is the first time I’ve had any issues with the frig opening. Either I didn’t have it tightly closed, or the twisting motion of the RV at the first gas station caused some serious pressure.
I’ll be at this campground for ten nights. It is located on the levee that forms the south bank of the Caloosahatchee canal. The canal is part of the waterway across the Florida peninsula. It connects Lake Okeechobee with the Caloosahatchee River which empties into the Gulf of Mexico at Fort Meyers. The Ortona Dam and Lock are located in front of the campground. The boat traffic and the wildlife should keep me entertained during my stay.
On this evenings walk I met the local raccoon and a pair of otters. They were foraging and fishing in a drainage canal that empties into the main canal near my campsite. From what I’m told by my fellow campers, there are several otters that keep people entertained when the alligators aren’t around. Tonight I didn’t see any gators.