We had so many pictures and adventures at Wekiwa Springs that we have to follow-up with one more post. Wekiwa Springs is so named because of the natural spring there that gives birth to the Wekiwa River. The spring itself has a semi-circular swimming area a couple of hundred feet in diameter. I am guessing at the exact dimensions because I am too lazy to look up the exact figure right at this moment. Luckily on Sunday the high temperature was in the mid-70s (F) and, since the spring water stays a constant 72 (F) year round, we figured we'd take a dip. We rode our bikes down to the spring (it was only a couple of miles from our campsite) in our bathing suits. There were not many people in the water, just two kids and a pair of adult snorkelers. The water is crystal clear and, even at 72 (F), rather bracing. But it was still warmer than the water in Wendy's dad's pool. The bottom is mostly sandy with a few moss covered boulders strewn about. You can easily see your feet, even at a depth of 5-6 feet. There are schools of small fish and there was a sign warning of alligators but we did not see any of those.
Here's a bathing beauty utilizing the entrance stairs.
There was a short boardwalk trail near the spring that was designed to show the difference in vegetation as the ground rose from wetlands to drylands. It was only about .5 miles long.
This next section covers Otis and the set-up we're using to keep him safe and happy. We have a small pet carrier that is his primary domicile and a puppy pen that we set on an 8'x8' piece of indoor-outdoor carpet when we keep him outside. He does not like being under the open sky (probably an instinctual fear of hawks), so we put half the pen under the edge of a picnic table and cover it with this dragon tapestry sheet to give him a classy hideout. Sometimes he just hangs out on top of his crate but he also takes occasional opportunities to run around the pen and get some exercise. We, of course, don't leave him outside unless we're right there.
Otis with his carrier, litter box, and toy ball.
Did someone say Snacky-Snack?
Otis took quite well to the local foliage. He's
always been a voracious leaf-muncher.
Speaking of snacky-snacks, here's a raptor on the prowl.
Take cover little Otis, take cover. This is not a drill!
There's also a bike trail at Wekiwa which is only about 10 miles but it travels through some really beautiful areas. It's mostly single track and mostly pretty well packed but there are also some wider sections comprised of soft sand which makes the 10 miles seem a little longer than it actually is.
All of the trails at Wekiwa are well marked with
color-coded blazes and are designated for specific
use (hiking, biking, equestrian), although a few trails
are multi-use in sections. The day we rode we did not see
any other bikers or people on horseback.
Wendy was over-joyed to find a giant
pine cone. We're going to use it for our
Xmas tree this year.
A good part of the trail was riding on pine needles.
About half-way along the trail, we came across this
giant sinkhole. That's Wendy standing on the other side.
That's me on the other side of the sinkhole.
I, of course, had to climb down into the sinkhole,
despite Wendy's entreaties to the contrary.
Here's two nice shots of the single-track.
-Wendy (most photos) and Gerry (text)