"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood... And sorry I could not travel both. I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference." --Robert Frost

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Finally, Florida! A Wedding, Kayaking & an Airboat Ride

Gibson County Park
Jasper, FL

On our way out of southeast Alabama, we crossed through a little of southwest Georgia on Rts 37/19/84 then a little on I-75 into Florida.  Again, such tiny backroads until the interstate.  Easy and enjoyable.  We knew this would be the last of our country time as we'd be in busy Florida after this.
How often do you see this?  Common back in Placerville, CA.  Reminded us of home.
And you know how I love finding hearts out in nature?  Well this was in a piece of beef jerky!
Before you knew it we were crossing the boarder into Florida.
This colorful field was just before we turned into our campground for the night.
Gibson County Park was right on our route.  $22 for the night.  We only paid $11 with our Veterans Discount.  We had W/E and the nice host assigned us #3 as it was the biggest pull-through.  Perfect for the night.  Small campground with a boat ramp into the Suwanee River.  Could be loud on weekends as it's a favorite for locals.
We had site #3.
The Suwanee River and boat ramp.  We stayed just down the road at the state park several years ago.

Wekiwa Springs, FL
Wekiwa Springs State Park

We got up early and headed out to our first site in Florida after our overnighter.  It was a 4 hour drive when we pulled into Wekiwa Springs State Park.
W/30/Dump, $24, #53.
This is a rather small campground with 2 circular loops.  One is more sunny and the other, the one we were in, was more shady.  Because of the circular loop, backing was pretty easy,  The sites are nicely spaced and lots of foliage.  We chose this campground as it's only 15 minutes to my brothers house and the wedding of my niece.  This is the reason we are back in Florida.  We visited my brother when we got there to see their place on the lake.
Ruger, Hurley's camping buddy, is looking pretty good at 12 years old.  It was nice to see him.
I went out on the lake behind their house and fished with my brother.  Not easy as the lily pads are quite overgrown.  I did catch one Bass.  My brother caught two.
Steve and I spent the next day paddling down the Wekiva River.  We thought we could paddle to the springs, but it was blocked off to everyone but swimmers.  We paddled back to the fork in the river that led to Rock Springs.  It was a great choice as there wasn't too many others on the small river and we saw so many birds.
Floating down the Wekiva River,ridingthe current. HERE
It was very shallow due to not much rainfall, but it was mostly a foot deep.  We only need 4 -6 inches to float in our kayak.
Drifting past a young Anihinga busy feeding. HERE
There were some very pretty wildflowers.
 I think these are called Bromeliads growing on the trees.

Some lilies were blooming.  A different type that doesn't open up as much.

It was very jungle-y out here.  Hot, humid but with a nice breeze.

The birds really didn't care that we were right in front of them.  It was a great way to spend the day.

The following evening the girls got together for a Bridal Shower and the guys went to Top Golf.  Then we gathered back at their house for a Mexican Fiesta. It was great. 

My sister arrived later that night and she stayed with us at the trailer.  We spent the next day visiting Wekiwa Springs at the head of the springs.  It was nice to see the other side that we couldn't when we were kayaking.  

The wedding was at an old Antebellum type venue.  It was an outdoor late afternoon wedding and the temperature and weather were perfect.  No bugs, not too hot or too humid.  It took place under a huge old oak tree.  I loved that they had a memory table of those that passed away before the wedding.  Our Gramma was on the far left and the other grandparents and mother of the groom (that sadly passed away only 2 weeks before the wedding) were represented.
Mr. and Mrs!
Congratulations Josh and Courtney!
Bride and Mother.
Bride and Father (my brother).
Not a dry eye during the Father/Daughter dance.
The wedding was small, intimate and just beautiful.  They all did a great job with it.
Me, my Brother and Sister

My sister-in-law set up an airboat ride for the family the next day at Wild Florida.
Welcome.  I'll be your driver today. (jk)
We all had a blast!
Airboat Ride HERE

Following a Flying Crane flying right in front of us. HERE
Some rare baby Albino Alligators born here.
They had a nice zoo too that you could go through for free, included with the airboat ride.
The ponds had some HUGE gators you could see on the boardwalks.  You could toss them some food cubes.  They apparently are well aware of this and many just lay their with their mouths open when you get nearby.
They had some smaller pools with baby gators that was cute too.
There were some other cute animals.  Many I've seen before and a couple I have not.  These Lemurs below had some babies if you look close enough.

This Peacock strutting his stuff was so funny!  HERE
This guy is just NUTS!  This alligator was one of the biggest there.  He put on a little show.

Orlando, Florida
Elks Lodge
After the wedding we moved closer to my brother's to spend some time with them.  The Elks was $20 with W/30.  They were incredibly nice to let us stay here and moved us in even though they were in the middle of a huge event themselves.  They had us park right along the building so we could plug in.  It was a snug fit.

My sister stayed with us so we drove over to the eastern shore at Cocoa Beach.  We walked around a bit then had a drink on the pier.
Dippin my tootsies in the Atlantic.
My sister, Kris.

It was a colorful sunset.

Just a tiny bit windy!
Our drinks were delicious.
After the last of the sun went down we drove down the road to Ron Jon where Steve wanted to get a shirt.  We also picked up a couple of really cute things for Jaxon!

Gettin' Goofy!

Next Up, Floating with the Manatees!


  1. How fun to see your family again! Weddings are special and it looks like you all had a wonderful time :-)

    1. We were so happy to be there for them. It was a beautiful wedding.

  2. We love the springs in that part of Florida. It certainly looks look like a nice wedding.

    1. I wish we could've gotten into a few more springs but things were booked up by time we made the decision to go to FL. We have seen some of them though. Very pretty.

  3. Looks like a great time...congrats all around! We really enjoyed Florida and an airboat ride too.
    Safe travels!

    1. We had a nice time. Thankfully the temps were a bit cooler and less humid while we were there.

  4. Northern Florida is a like a totally different state than it is further south. So much to see, fish and kayak! The wedding looks like a good time, nice that you were able to make it.

    1. We had fun. We wanted to do more fishing but we'd have had to had a fresh water license as well as a salt water license. We were able to visit quite a few friends along the way too!

  5. When we were talking about your Florida trip when we saw you it seemed like forever - and now it's already done! How fun to see all the baby gators and I agree that trainer is nuts :-) Gorgeous sunset.

    1. It sure has gone fast! Florida is already done and we are now in Virginia for a family reunion! Hot and humid is still a daily deal, yuck!

  6. Looks like some great memories were made, great family time, and pictures.


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