Thursday, May 5, 2011

Caladesi Island State Park: the Mangrove Forest

So I am finally getting around to more of the Spring break photos. This was at Caladesi Island State Park. I posted photos from the beach which is on the gulf side of the Island and on the other side where you arrive at is a mangrove forest. When we first got to the Island this is what I wanted to do the most and so I went in followed by sis and mother. We spent 3 hours out while we only had a total of 4 on the island.
Here is the link to the Island's web page at the floridastateparks.org

Can see the Island below in Google maps how the left side is beach and the opposite is mangroves


Anyways I will go on with the Photos, remember this is the other side of the #1 beach in the United States!
Oh, and click on the photographs for a larger view!


I do love the color of the Kayak's, makes it easier to spot my mother and sis if they get lost, although they were so loud anyone could hear them.



They were right behind me hitting everything in sight. They really haven't kayaked that much before other then down at the Florida Key's but that was in way open water not a 3-12 foot channel with trees on both sides.

It was a warm day, but underneath the shade of the mangroves, if felt really nice. 

I was busy taking a ton of photos and while I sat still taking shots, they passed me.

I think the tide was going out as we were going deeper in the forest. The roots complemented the libs shooting to the sky. It was like opposites. One in love with the sun, the other in love with the water.



I was still trialling behind them but it was annoying still because they were loud and scaring off the wildlife that I was trying to see. 

Found them!


There were a lot of narrow channels shooting off the main trail.




New ones sprouting to the clouds above





Emerging from the forest!

The trail brings you out to the main water and you can either decide to loop back to where we start for a short trip but I wanted to do the entire thing!


The Black mangrove roots  are the ones that are sticking out of the water like that.

This was really interesting, the way the light was hitting the trees it caused this white appearance on the branches and the roots. The reflection on the water made it more awesome.





Things are getting narrow :)



A Water Turkey (Anhiga), was swimming on top and underneath the surface of the water trying to find fish. It swam under our Kayak and it was to quick for me to get it's mugshot!

Mother and sister didn't notice these, but I was like "Something is moving on that tree over there" They froze, scared. "It's little crabs!" There were a few on a few trees that we came across where they were climbing up and relaxing out of the water on the trees.






More Black mangroves

Some land! There was this random bit of land on our trip with a larger tree on it followed by palms on the ground and some tall ones. 



We now are out of the trails and have to paddle back on the outside of the forest in the open water which isn't as fun and it looks like it will take forever to reach your destination. There were many birds that were on the branches of the trees watching the open water for more fish to eat



Well I hope you enjoyed the photos, I still recommend that if you are in the Tampa area on Florida, go to Caladesi Island! It was ranked the #1 beach in America twice! You have to pay to enter at Honeymoon island, then it is $12 more to catch the Ferry that goes to Caladesi Island. The boat leaves every half an hour and starts at 10 I think. The kayak rental is more. Just plan accordingly as you have only 4 hours over at Caladesi Island if you take the Ferry. If you took your own boat or swam over, I think you still have to pay a small fee to be there but at least your time isn't limited!
I had a lot more photographs of the interior of the Mangroves but it was mostly stock as I was just taking them like crazy and I narrowed it down to what you see here!

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