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Friday, June 24, 2011

DAY 159: HAROLD - HOLT - CRESTVIEW, FLORIDA

West Texas is suffering from NO rain for nearly an entire year. Two or three thunder storms per day cross over Alabama and Florida; they are, however, fast moving, small in size, and intense in their wind and rain by the bucket - for a few minutes...not nearly enough to sate the thirst of marsh land such as the photograph above.

Many lakes and swamps are far below normal level - even here in the Central Florida Panhandle. Folks I talk to all wish for rain...rain which comes often, but of little real value.


US 90 early this morning walking East out of the tiny village of HAROLD, FLORIDA. The Convenience Store kicked us out before we got settled. Brian and Windy came to our rescue. Regrettably, we did not get to visit as they had a family emergency. I did thank Windy before leaving after my first walk of the day - 12 miles (3 hours).

Interesting colors are the soils of the Florida Panhandle. Mostly, the soil is SAND...a gray-white sand that is the consistency powder. Then again, some areas have intense white soil while others, in the photograph above, have deep RED clay soils...each example coming quickly one after the other. Reminds me of mixing chocolate into cake batter with the old wooden spoon...never know what color is coming up where.

Florida is very LOW lying; i.e., as I remember, the highest point is about 58 feet above sea level. HOLT, FLORIDA, pictured above, sits at nearly 58 feet (feels a bit higher than that). Result is that I had to climb and descend a number of hills today...the first real hills since leaving the GUADELOUPE MOUNTAINS of Far West Texas many weeks ago.

This housing community sits across US 90 from the HOLT Water Tower. It is the only "real" community of homes since leaving Alabama.

Along with the hills, the dense underbrush of the marshes is gone. In place of thick vegetation are lots of open forested areas.

US 90 in Florida has been an excellent road - for the most part. Going through towns, such as CRESTVIEW, FLORIDA, there are some sidewalk - even some crosswalks-, but for the most part, NO shoulder (bicycle / walking) lanes.

This evening, SPIA found this dead-end Cul-De-SAC with only one home on the entire 1,000 foot long gravel road. Knocked on the door of the home - behind the camera in this photograph - and was assured that it was more than OK to stay the night..."...no one ever comes down this road."


Note the spec of land on the lower right of this photograph - continued next pic...

This property, beautifully sited on a rather large serene lake is for sale.

US 90 once again enters marsh land; i.e., dense vegetation.

A Corrections Institution on US 90. Razor Wire everywhere, and the main gate is wide open with no guard or guard house...felt compelled to walk over and ask why, but thought better of it....they might ask where I was parked ! ! !

CRESTVIEW has a beautiful and large City Park...the City Department is not called the "Park Department"; rather, it is called "Leisure Time Department". Creative !

We close with these clouds floating overhead as I walked back to SPIA from my third leg of the day...a tour into the town of CRESTVIEW, looking for an Ice Cream Scoop. It is difficult to dig out spoonfuls of watermelon and cantaloupe. I have a small dense-foam ice chest which I put the entire melon in...with only the "hat" cut out (just like the top of a Jack-O-Lantern hat). It is easier to keep cold that way as melon would never fit in the refrigerator. Therefore, my desire for an ice cream scoop !!!

Clouds look threatening, but looks can be deceiving. NO RAIN yet. It is now 8:30 pm (local) and pitch black outside.

DAILY REPORT: Walked three legs today, totaling 32 miles.

SEE YOUR IMPACT.ORG: Credit 32 miles @ $0.02 = $0.64 for the day.

In the morning, will continue walking East on US 90.

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