Beach exercise

Beach exercise

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

More Florida state parks

It seems that I am destined to be constantly behind in catching up the blog.  We just returned from a week RV trip where we had no useable Wi-Fi, so I am even further behind. 

Torreya State Park.  This park has a small campground and is named for the very rare Torreya tree that only grows along the bluffs of the Apalachicola River.  There are hiking trails and you can tour the home of Jason Gregory, plantation owner before the Civil War.  After the war, the house fell disrepair and was nearly lost, since it was built in the swampy area of the river because of the need to be near the plantation operation. When the park was started in1935, one of the first projects was to move the home to the bluff on the opposite bank of the river and restore it to the period before the civil war with the Gregory descendents contributing many original items from the home to the park. There were some interesting trails to hike, but we were advised by the ranger that it was not a good time to do so, as there were many poisonous snakes on the trails with two folks already bitten that month. So we enjoyed an interesting tour of the home and learning about the Torreya tree.  Local legend has it that the Torreya tree, which is also called the Gopher tree, provided the wood for Noah's Ark.  This area is also referred to as the Garden of Eden and said to have every plant mentioned in the Bible.














The next state park we visited was Ochlockonee River.  This is a small state park with some hiking trails and a campground and recreation area bordering the river.  We had a site along the river and enjoyed a peaceful afternoon walking the park and watching the special white squirrels.  A great place to relax, hike or enjoy the water.









Our last stop was St Joseph Peninsula State Park.  This historic peninsula was first explored by Europeans in the 1500's.  Today the park is a wilderness area which can be explored ashore or on the water.  The beaches here are known for their sunrises and sunsets.  It is an short walk from the campgrounds to the beach.  What makes it a bit special is the fact that the Peninsula runs more or less north and south allowing a full view of the sun over water during sunrise and sunset.  Sunset was certainly the highlight of our visit.













11 comments:

Wanderin' said...

Always having to catch up with the blog is something I have to do too. The state parks in Florida we've seen are pretty nice. We especially like the ones that sit right on the water and there are quite a few of those.

Sherry said...

Really sorry you didn't get to hike in Torreya. We have not been to that park and had heard good things about the hiking. Wonder when the snakes go to sleep for the winter. We have stayed at Oclockonee but the mosquitoes were impossible when we were there so we didn't get to enjoy it as much as we might have except for the very neat white squirrels. Your pictures are fantastic. Very nice kayaking there. The Sopchoppy Worm Gruntin' Festival is nearby. Sounded pretty strange to me. St. Joseph is one of our favorites. Were you in the small or the large campground. Your sunset pictures are gorgeous. Love your little sand crab.

Paul and Marti Dahl said...

All the parks look like amazing places to visit. With all your travels, it makes me wonder why you bought a house. ;c)

Katherine Batterton said...

Great sunset!

Randy Warner said...

I think 'always catching up' is the plight of a blogger... I know I feel that way much of the time too. Nice photos of some interesting parks. Aren't Florida's State Parks the best?

Paul and Marsha Weaver OCT. 17, 2009 said...

I remember reading about the Gopher tree and Noah's Arc. Pretty cool.

I would love to visit that park. Every plant mentioned in the Bible. I would love that.

I have never seen a white squirrel. How strange.

Gypsy said...

I can't get enough of sunrise and sunset pictures.

Linda said...

It must be wonderful to travel like this! Your photos are amazing, and the squirrel is quite beautiful and unique. I have never seen a white squirrel (or a red one, either). The only ones I see here in Montreal are the gray ones and a black one once in a while. :)

Bob and Jo said...

Great photos and parks.

intrepid-decrepit-traveler said...

Jimmy and I used to live in Tallahassee, so we're familiar with these state parks. We especially enjoying hiking in Torreya If you get to Tallahassee, Leon Sinks Geological Area is a fun place to walk around. Too cool seeing white squirrels! I enjoyed your pictures!

Laura Skjenna said...

everything sounds and looks wonderful... but I would skip on the snakes!