Monday April 8th 2019
Today was another summer like day in Florida. It was sunny, hot and humid during the day. The temperature peaked in the upper eighties with a nice sea breeze in this area. Inland it got even warmer causing strong thunderstorms to develop and drift into this area after dark this evening. It rain hard off an on for about an hour. A front with more severe weather is due in the area tomorrow.
Today I drove the Black Point Wildlife Drive in the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. The seven mile one way dirt road follows the dikes that surround shallow marsh ponds. There were plenty of birds and a few alligators to see in the animal category. They were complimented by many blooming wildflowers. According to the literature, April is a little late for the peak of the bird viewing season.
As you slowly follow the road as it winds around the marsh ponds you need to be on the look out for wildlife. Most of the birds are a good distance back from the road so binoculars would be helpful. Mine were back at my RV home. I tried to take pictures with my camera zoomed to the maximum of the optical zoom, but they didn’t provide great detail. Most of the gators were in hiding today. I saw a couple of small ones mostly submerged. It was still a very enjoyable drive.
I took one hike about two thirds of the way around the drive. The Allen Cruickshank trail has a number of observation platforms to watch the wildlife. It was a little too warm to hike the entire trail without a good water supply. I really wasn’t prepared for a hike in the heat and humidity. I checked out the area from the two observation platforms nearest the trail head. When the clouds started to build on the western horizon, I ended my explorations and returned to my RV home. The rain didn’t arrive for a couple of hours.