Thursday March 31st 2022
The weather trend toward more humidity and warmer temperatures continued today. The early part of the day had a very strong south to southwest wind that kept the overall comfort level manageable. Later in the day the wind let up enough that the temperature flirted with ninety and was a bit uncomfortable.
I had a few errands to do in civilization today, so I made the fifty mile drive west into Naples Florida. It provides a good opportunity to stop at some of the trails and roadside stops along the way. On the way west I stopped at the main Big Cypress National Preserve Visitors Center on the west side of the preserve. Usually you can catch a manatee in the water behind the center, but today all I found was an alligator swimming in deep water.
On the way back I stopped at the Kirby Shorter Roadside Park. The cypress trees and plant life have shown a lot of change in the two weeks since my last visit. There is a lot more green on the trees and in the grass. A few more flowers have also appeared particularly in the water.
At both stops I didn’t see any of the big wading birds. Perhaps the wind was keeping them in more sheltered areas. I did see several turtles and some juvenile alligators at the Kirby Shorter Park. It was well worth the stop and walk out the boardwalk to the strand.
The campground is closer to full tonight than it was last night. It looks like there are only a couple of empty sites. Most of the sites are filled with travelers from states far away. There are two California license plates along with several Wisconsin, Minnesota and Ohio. Florida plates are in the minority tonight.