I did the most stupid thing last night while snugly parked in the Sebastian State Park Campground...I went to sleep without - for the very first time - without checking the driver's door and windows. The door was unlocked...not a big deal. The windows were both open...a VERY big deal.
All night long I fought off no-see-ems and mosquitoes. My legs were a mass of red welts from bites.
I must slow down a bit. In my rush to reach KEY WEST, FLORIDA, I am beginning to become careless.
Shortly after Sun-up, I left SPIA parked, walked out to SR A1A, and walked South for 3 hours.
This is what I discovered:
One one side of A1A is the Atlantic Ocean. On the other is the Inter Coastal Waterway...also known as The Banana River and the Indian River in this part of Florida. The Indian River is a sportsman's paradise. Not only alligators live here, but also hundreds of specie of birds and fish. The water is quite shallow allowing fishermen to wade quite far from shore.
A number of smallish sailboats were anchored a bit off shore.
Three miles from the Sebastian State Park, A1A left the waters and became a "tunnel"; i.e., thick foliage on both sides of the roadway hiding the hundreds of hideaway millionaire homes. For over 15 miles, there was not a single spot to pull off A1A to park. There was not a single business place. A1A was an isolated roadway giving nothing away beyond the thick growth.
There was, however, a 5 - foot wide macadam walkway the entire length of A1A for at least 25 miles, making walking a breeze...if not boring.
Before the tunnel came upon us, however, access to the Banana River was limitless. Later noticed that this entire stretch of A1A was still in the Sebastian State Park.
Numerous docks jutted out into the Inter Coastal Waterway...each and every one of them carrying the above "NO" sign.
The roadway in the tunnel area carried this sign every hundred yards or so.
Some folks had a really great view of the Indian River.
The vegetation along the tunnel was heavy all right, but it was also lush. Most of the plants I may have seen somewhere before, but I couldn't begin to give them proper names.
How about "Banana Leaf Tree". Sounds descriptive, but is probably wrong.
Many types of Pal Trees were included in the tunnel growth.
Some which stood quite high out of the soil on roots which appeared to be trying to walk away.
Along the actual water edge, most trees are with this type root. I know there is a special name for it, but...well, there is a lot I don't know about our World and life in it.
The Indian River. Mainland Florida is about 8 miles away to the West.
Homes line the Ocean side to the left. They also own land on the Banana River side of A1A, evidenced by the hundreds of "PRIVATE" docks jutting out into the river.
The Pedestrian Walkway is next to the Highway.
Docks provide homes for other life also.
An unusual sight...a "Net Fisherman"
Good Throw ! And, yes, the Net Fisherman actually pulled in the net with two or three struggling fish inside - largest about 12 inches long.l
Ever present birds. I tried to catch the Pelicans flying by, but they come up from skimming the waters and are quickly out of sight...the camera must be ready for them. Will keep trying.
A very lucky photographic opportunity.
And then there were two of them.
It was hot and humid all day. The Tunnel area provided two benches for walkers.
Yes, I did use them...nearly fell asleep on this one, pic taken from the roadway.
INDIAN RIVER SHORES is a community of unbelievable wealthy communities and individual private mansions...all hidden from view by the tunnel. Did not see a single Condominium.
Also, did not find a single place to park.
This Ships Anchor was found a mile off shore. It is from a Spanish Galleon "Treasure Ship" which sank in 1715 during a Hurricane. This part of Florida is known as the Treasure Coast. There is a museum on A1A, but I did not stop to go inside.
As it was getting late, I decided to drive the 12 miles to FT. PIERCE, FLORIDA, where there is another State Park. Upon arriving, was informed they had NO provisions for overnighters. I continued driving on A1A which joined US 1 in downtown FT. PIERCE. I pulled into the "K MART" mall, went inside and asked permission to park overnight. I also asked the WIN DIXIE Supermarket folks. They both said absolutely and pointed to where SPIA would be safe for the night.
DAILY UPDATE: Walked about 24 miles today. Must walk back up A1A for that 12 miles I drove today.
SEE YOUR IMPACT.ORG: Credit 24 miles @ $0.02 = $0.48 for the day.
I will leave SPIA parked at K-Mart tomorrow while recovering the 12 miles. Will then walk South on US 1 for a few hours.
A1A is a beautiful highway to walk, but I am concerned that I must switch over to US 1...simply because A1A has NO place for SPIA to park. US 1 is pretty much a continuous business district, getting more so as we approach MIAMI, FLORIDA.