Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Apr. 7 (Day 97) - The Everglades

It was a really long day but pretty fun.  We did our day long everglades tour.  We had a tour guide named, "fill in later", that warned us he would talk from beginning to end and he wasn't joking.  We spent many hours traveling from place to place and he would just talk about the roads, the environment, whatever was on his mind.  He was pretty funny and not too loud so you could rest if you wanted, which was nice.

Our first stop was a boardwalk into a wet area.  X said it was normally all dry but the weather had been so bad this winter it was still wet, so the alligator could move around more and we wouldn't see them here.  Not to worry, there were plenty to see later.  We got to see the strangler fig trees that will complete wrap the cypress tree and a large eagles nest.

We then headed to everglade city and to the National Parks boat tour.  We saw so many different animals.  Here is the osprey with her two babies.  She squawked at then until they ducked down in the nest.

We then saw a manatee.  Or rather it's nose, but I didn't get a picture.  Someone else saw something in the water and it turned out to be a raccoon.  The are the only mammals that can survive out in the mangroves because they've learned to like the dew off the leaves in the morning.  The poor little guy thought we were gonna run him over.

We saw four or five dolphin playing in the water and they followed the boat for a while.  The teens were as enthusiastic as ever.  Especially when they ran out of gas in one engine and it took a bit longer to head back to the dock.

Next we drove through the Everglades on the one main road.  There's a man made canal that has alligators just about everywhere you look.  We stopped a few times for some photos.   Eventually even Paul and Kevin would get out.  Still looking really excited.

Our final stop was for our fan boat ride.  We had to wait a while but they had lizards and birds and even a baby alligator to see while we were waiting.  Cassie was the only one that held it.  I was surprised they didn't have it's mouth banded because I wouldn't want that thing to bite me.

On the fan boat we so tons of alligators.  The said there were 3,000-4,000 in just that lake.  It was pretty loud but we had muffler type headphones on.  It was a lot of fun be we didn't go as fast as I thought we would.

We had to unexpected things happen on the trip.  At the end we saw a bald eagle.  It was a young one that hadn't turned white yet.  It was pretty neat to see.  During the middle of the trip we went around the corner and saw this...

Seriously, can anyone say "Lake Placid."

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