Monday, February 22, 2016

Manatee Springs

I have learned that when RVing in Florida...

do not hesitate. 

If you want to stay at a specific park (particularly the state parks) you better book it right away. With some parks, that's not even possible. The closer you get to the Keys, the more difficult it is to book. But, there are many gems in Florida when it comes to state parks, and they book up as well. Unlike the Keys they are possible to book, but you do have to grab them early. (The Keys really should be on a lottery system, it would be easier than what it is now, and arguably more fair)

I felt like Myakka and Alafia fell in this category, but one of the ones I really wanted to visit was Manatee Springs. So as we were planning our Northward drive through the state, I checked for reservations. Booked. So I started scrolling through availability and found 3 days that we could stay there. It meant changing around our plans and other reservations, but man am I glad that we did!


Whew, sorry, I'll regain my composure. (But it REALLY was)

We snorkeled with manatees for two straight days! And when we weren't snorkeling we were kayaking, biking, or eating BBQ sold and smoked right there in the middle of all the action. This was the most laid back, beautiful park with the most awesome pay back ever...crystal blue waters, manatees, and SNAKES! 

Yes, snakes. 

I shouldn't be excited about snakes, cause, you know...they're snakes. But, as we were snorkeling, we saw several snakes swimming at the bottom of the water. I didn't even know snakes could swim at the bottom of the water! Don't get me wrong, I am petrified of snakes. When I looked down and saw the first snake swimming only about two feet below me, I panicked. I didn't want to put my face back in the water because I didn't want to see it, but I didn't want to put my feet down because I didn't want to step on I just skittered across the top of water until I got back to the edge and got out. After I calmed down a little, I convinced my kids how it was a good thing that I saw it, because it made me realize that they really don't want anything to do with you. They'll just leave you worked! When they saw snakes under water (and they both did) they were calm, and they didn't rush out of the water. However, they did know to tell me calmly so that I didn't freak out. (They know me so well, I only talk a big game!)

Do you see the snake coiled up on the 
log...only one of the many!

And it's like I tell my kids...if nothing bad or scary every happens, the stories are WAY less cool later.

This is AFTER they saw the snakes, 
and yes, they are still snorkeling!


becca lynn said...

Yikes! Snakes scare me, but I would have loved to swim with manatees! So much fun!

g2 said...

1. snakes be cool... particularly southern fried, but BBQ works too.
2. underwater, snakes won't generally bother you but stomping around them can lead to inadvertent collisions which they instinctively recoil from and occasionally lash out at.
3. watching them snorkeling is cool.

you guys are a gas.

Maggie Blue said...

Florida has snakes. They have SO MANY SNAKES. I have seen more snakes this week then I have in my whole life! (And this includes an incident as a child where I was trapped against a door being threatened by a poisonous snake...thank goodness for grandmas and grandpas who come running with hoes and shovels to chop of their heads!)

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