Ichetucknee 2

Trees and wetlands embrace the nourishment and easy flow of the Ichetucknee River.

Ichetucknee Springs near High Springs and Fort White, Florida provides an abundance of life to the natural habitation in Florida’s northeast region, and is an oasis of sorts year round. 

A boat sit still along with the slow moving water flow from Ichetucknee River.

The Ichetucknee 1 post provides information and images of the head water springs and the north entrance to the Ichetucknee River.  The images in this post reveal the south end of the river where water travelers usually exit from the peaceful ride. 

The flow of the springs creates a beautiful river that was once a secret (somewhat) before 1970.  You wouldn’t know it today as thousands converge on the area.  The river doesn’t mind though.  It just meanders along awaiting new people to jump right in and ride along. 

Smooth water from Ichetucknee River allows reflection of the cypress trees.

Ichetucknee River flows about six miles through the shaded hammocks and wetlands before joining the Santa Fe River.  In 1972 the head spring of the river was declared a national natural landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior. 

Crystal-clear Ichetucknee River flows toward the Santa Fe River in Florida.
The shadow from a cypress tree provides a clear look through the pristine water to see the bottom surface.

White-tailed deer, raccoons, wild turkeys, wood ducks and great blue herons can be seen from the river. Picnic areas, equipped with tables and grills, are available throughout the park.

Woods and swamp area between Ichetucknee River and the south exit to the store, restaurant and eating areas. Doesn’t it look like a Big Foot image in the photo?
Paved walkway between the Ichetucknee River and the concession area.

A full-service concession offers food, refreshments, and outdoor products from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Tubes plus snorkeling and diving equipment can be rented from private vendors outside the park. Located four miles northwest of Fort White, off State Roads 47 and 238. https://www.stateparks.com/ichetucknee_springs_state_park_in_florida.html

Ichetucknee General Store and concession area at the south end of the Ichetucknee River

Blessings along the Way!

Ron

Ichetucknee 1

It’s quiet now, missing the laughter and squealing with the cool spring water. Serene, peaceful, where are the people?

Crystal clear headwaters at Ichetucknee Springs begin at the north entrance and flow southward.
Spring water bubbles up and flows downstream for all to enjoy.

It was a warm pre-spring day with a slight haze from clouds. We ponder, and imagine, that soon the echoes erupt through the oaks; ripples with the splash of the crystal clear flow. It will soon be Ichetucknee’s prime time.

Ichetucknee – Indian word meaning “beaver pond” and is one of Florida’s 33 first-magnitude springs. (Wikipedia) The springs are located close to High Springs, Florida.

To me, prime time is whenever I can be there, taking in the beauty around. I enjoyed the quietness and stillness without all the laughter and splashing – because it was a good picture day – even though vegetation was still dormant.

The soft flow of the springs allows a slight splash now and then but their flow is without effort, abiding within natural barriers. A leaf falls from the tree and you could almost hear it land in the woods, or softly touch the smooth, clear water.

This is a beautiful place. Observe with me the beauty even in the after-affects of winter.

Egrets and turtles continue their daily routine regardless of coolness or warmth.

Soon, the people will arrive, the green abounds and the sun bakes. The springs refresh. Below is a nice video from Trips to Discover.

Blessings along the Way!

Ron


Thursday Doors at High Springs

Wall art on old building in High Springs, Florida

Here is a combination of street art and emphasis on Thursday Doors. Did it catch your attention? Do you notice the door?

High Springs is a town in North Florida with around 4,000 in population. It is not far from the University of Florida in Gainesville.

Since we are getting close to spring, here is another take on it – High Springs. Visit Florida provides a little additional insight, stating it’s the casual tempo of High Springs that entices travelers.

High Springs tempts visitors with diverse and unique offerings of art, antiques and outdoor adventures that make it a refreshing getaway.

Surrounded by natural attractions, the town attracts canoeists, cave divers and campers heading to the nearby Santa Fe River. High Springs is a place for snorkeling, diving, tubing or swimming in natural springs that flow at a steady 72 degrees all year long. https://www.visitflorida.com/en-us/cities/high-springs.html

If you are in the North Florida area it’s worth a little trip to High Springs and enjoy the small town flavor along with the beautiful springs and oaks.
https://highsprings.us/ More about the springs later.

This is my first post for #ThursdayDoors so I copied the following information from an excellent blogger, Dan, at https://nofacilities.com/2019/02/28/closing-februarys-door-thursdaydoors/. He also links to Norm’s blog and #ThursdayDoors information.

“If you don’t know about the list, it’s worth checking out. It’s even worth the minute or two to sign-in, if you haven’t already. Having your door on the list means that more people will see them. I’ve been on the list and off the list, and I can tell you that being on the list puts more eyeballs on your page. How do you get on the list? I’m glad you asked. Follow this link to Norm’s doors. Check them out and then look for the link to the list. Fill out the form, and your doors are in the gallery of doors for this week. ” Dan Antion

Blessings along the Way!

Ron

Florida’s Music

Florida music with natureI enjoy this image I saw at a Florida welcome center, Osceola National Forest, highlighting Florida’s music.

The trumpeting of sandhill cranes, croaking of bull gators and grunting of pig frogs – part of the natural habitat.

Interstate 10 goes through the Osceola National Forest near Lake City, Florida.  It’s not far from the Suwannee River where Stephen Foster was inspired.

According to VisitFlorida: “On the banks of the Suwannee River, the Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park brings camping, canoeing and hiking along this historic river together with living folk culture. The park, named for the composer of Florida’s state song, “Old Folks at Home” (better known as “Way Down Upon the Suwannee River”).

I can see how one like Stephen Foster would be inspired to write.  The following words came to my mind just by looking at the nature photo and driving over the Suwanee River (I see a future post about this river coming.)

“Oh the music to my hears, of the things we hold dear,                                                              Some we may naturally like and some may create fear.                                                            The soft, gentle flow of rain and water,                                                                                    Create an environment that you don’t want to bother.” – Ron Tittle

The caption of the artwork states:

Among the towering trees of Fanny Bay Swamp, listen for the splash of the turtle sliding off its log.

Look for the “trees with knees”! The cypress trees and swamp are home to many of the plants and animals we may see within the Florida forest.

Notice the different plants and animals that live in this ecosystem compared to the pines and flatwoods.

Listen closely, beyond the noisy creatures and soft sound of the wind – enjoying the music of cypress swamps.

“When you try to change any single thing, you find it hitched to everything else in the universe.”  – John Muir

Blessings!

Ron

Daytona Beach beckons

Daytona Beach Welcome Overhead Sign on A1A

What comes to mind when you hear Daytona Beach?  Is it racing, hotels or condos, or beaches?

Daytona Beach Oceanside Main EntranceIf you are a regular guest at Daytona Beach, Fla. then you probably come for a specific purpose.  I make trips there occasionally and it seems the main reason is the beach.  The beautiful white sandy beach is a natural attraction and you can still drive your vehicle on it – compared to many other beaches in Florida.

Daytona Beach Ocean View from Perry'sDaytona Beach is “one of the few places in the world where a family car can be driven on an ocean beach.” (Wikitravel)

And yes, there is racing too.  I’ll talk about racing in another blog later.

Daytona Beach Ocean Entrance TunnelDid you know?  Daytona was founded in 1870 by Matthias Day, from whom it takes its name. It was incorporated as a city in 1876. The separate towns of Daytona, Daytona Beach and Seabreeze merged to form Daytona Beach in 1926. In the 1920s, the city became known as The World’s Most Famous Beach.  https://wikitravel.org/en/Daytona_Beach

Daytona Beach Lifeguard
Lifeguards are positioned along the beach to reinforce safety.

Daytona Beach Oceanside fishing
Ocean fishing is often noticed along the beach – intermingled with surfers and people enjoying the water, although those fishing attempt to avoid conflict when possible.

 

 

 

 

Daytona Beach Parking Garage Street Art
Street art on parking garages and other buildings adds color and description to the the area.

Daytona Beach A1A Overhead Sign
Overhead safety crosswalks combined with push-button signals at ground-level crosswalks enhance safety of pedestrians and bicyclists.

Breezeway on A1A

The amusement park, shops and restaurants are popular attractions.

Daytona Beach Amusement Park

Daytona Beach Amusement Park Beachside

A1A - Daytona Beach Hog Heaven building
Bar-B-Q is popular in the area and one doesn’t need to go far to visit the Hog Heaven restaurant across the street from the amusement park.

 

 

Daytona Beach Joe's Crab Shack
For those who love seafood there is Joe’s Crab Shack right on the beach with a fantastic view.

Daytona Beach Ice Cream Shop
Everyone has room for ice cream.

There are many vacation club rentals available along with hotels and resorts.  One of the cost-effective resorts is a little farther south in Daytona Beach Shores at Perry’s Resort.  They’ve been there for 75 years and are currently expanding and remodeling while providing excellent rates and service.   https://www.perrysoceanedge.com/

 

 

 

Daytona Beach Perry's Resort Donuts
One of the favorites at Perry’s is complimentary homemade donuts along with other breakfast items.

Daytona Beach Shores view from bridge
View of the south end of Daytona Beach Shores from the Intracoastal Waterway.

Additional information and highlights are located at https://www.daytonabeach.com/.

Live a Victorious Life!

Ron

Where is your beach?

 

Ahhhh!  Beach Life!  Sand, surf and sun.

North Florida beach in December

 

The beaches even in northeast Florida have been pleasant – especially for December and January when most places experience colder weather.

Florida has so many opportunities throughout the year, particularly around the water.  Did you know that Florida has 4,308 square miles of water, 1,197 statue miles of coastline and 663 miles of beaches?  Wow, you can play in water to your heart’s content.

The website visitflorida.com has excellent information for your visit to Florida.  By the way, Florida expects to have another record year of more than 100 million visitors.

Florida beaches are good places to reflect on the past and look toward the new year.

Speaking of the new year, here we are!  2016.  How is your year going so far?

Do you have a carryover feeling from 2015 that you seem to be walking alone, that what you wanted to accomplish was not complete, or that you failed in some area?

Even when the surrounding environment is peaceful and calm, glimmering with rays of the sun, calm winds and smooth flow of the tide there may be internal turmoil within us, whether we are aware or not.

There may be times we feel alone; sometimes against the world  – and ourselves.

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At times though we desire, and probably need, to be alone for reflection and understanding.  That’s okay.  Just don’t stay there.  We are a creation made for social interaction, the need to fellowship.

So as the waves crash over us and we feel all washed up, without any sense of hope or accomplishment, become renewed.

Mickler Beach 151229-4

 

Who is the one walking by your side?  Take hope in knowing someone loves you and cares for you.

You are really never alone.  There is a new day, a new beginning.  Look for that special one who cares.  Seek and you will find. DCIM100GOPROG0040042.

We may not have mansions on the beach but simply have a small abode, that’s okay.  And when the outer shell of our soul and inner being become frail, we can still have a renewed being that is not built by human hands. Knock and it shall be opened unto you.  Have you knocked?

Mickler Beach 151229-2