Sunday Before and After the Rain

Sunday March 20th 2022

Happy First Day of Spring.

The weather forecast called for another cold front to pass through the area today. For most of the winter the weather pattern has called for a cold front to pass through every few days. The trick was knowing how much rain and wind came with the front. It sounded like today’s front was going to be one of the weaker variety, but none of the forecasts are for this immediate area. They are either for Miami, Key West or the Naples area. All of those areas are at least fifty miles away. It turned out to be a mild weather day, but I planned for the worst.

Tonight’s sunset over the campground.
Wildflower blossom of the day

I got my first walk in early. The temperature was in the mid eighties and it was very humid at 9:30AM. By noon the sky to the north was looking threatening, so I retreated inside my RV home. It looked like it would rain at any minute for most of the afternoon. Around 4PM it finally started to rain. For the next half hour the area was subject to a couple of minutes of downpour followed by a few minutes break before repeating the pattern. The sun was back out by 5PM reflecting off all the puddles left by the rain. I took my second walk of the day after the rain.

Last night there were lots of tent campers in the various sections of the camping area, but there were still vacancies. I am very surprised at how empty the Flamingo area seems. The prime season is from November to April, but in many ways it seems more like the off season. In the visitors center and marina area there are more empty parking spaces than there are occupied spots. Perhaps the issue is all the reconstruction going on after the last few hurricanes. I don’t know if it is funding or the pandemic, but the rebuilding seems to be taking forever. The marina area, run by a concessionaire, is operational, but most of the boat slips are empty. The sign at the construction site for the visitors center says it will be opening in 2021. I doubt they will make it by the end of 2022. The temporary visitor center building will have to function for another year.

New Flamingo Lodge under construction. One of several buildings made of shipping containers.

The new Flamingo Lodge construction is the only thing that seems to have any urgency associated with it. There were construction workers on site both Saturday and Sunday. The rebuilt lodge will be very modern and potentially more resistant to water and wind in a hurricane. They are building it out of recycled shipping containers. Once again it is associated with the concessionaire, so it may be easier to spend money on a revenue generating structure as opposed to the visitors center of other infrastructure.

Canal into the backcountry waters.
American Crocodile swimming in the canal.

On my walks today I continued to be drawn to the two Osprey nests. Watching the young wait for their next meal to arrive is fascinating. Tonight there were about five people with fancy cameras setup to get pictures at the nest in the marina. I like my pictures with my less than fancy camera.

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