February and March 2010 in the Keys
Trip Start Nov 19, 2007
217Trip End Ongoing
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Where I stayed
Bahia Honda State Park
We started out from Estero on Saturday morning, February 6th and drove down to Florida City where we did our usual overnight stay along with 18 or so other RVers. We had ribs and pulled pork at Sonny's....don't forget the corn bread!!! We did our grocery shopping at Walmarts and picked out a movie from the Red Box to make the evening exciting. It takes an RVer to know how to make a stay in a Walmart Parking Lot "exciting"!! Up and out early on Sunday morning to stay at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park for two nights before heading down to Bahia Honda. We have reservations at Curry Hammock State Park and are booked into Long Key for later on as well
Andy needed to get fishing so we rigged up his kayak with gear and walked it down to the water's edge. Off he went to try his luck. After many hours he came home with one Grunt Fish which we ate for dinner, and claimed how the tide current as well as the winds made it too tough to fish and keep himself from drifting too far away or bumping constantly into either the electric poles or the bridge supports. Not fun. He will have to put that great Block brain onto solving that problem and come up with a design to make kayak fishing work. In the mean time there is always fishing from the land near the old Rail Road Bridge. fun to fish with Mr. Pelican watching...came home with a Porgy..
While Andy was fishing, I went on down to the Re-enactment of Henry Flagler's Rail Road that he built from Miami to Key West. An astounding feat of engineering and tenacity to work in the mangroves and muck and water all while you are in unbearable heat and tortuous mosquitoes! Many men died. It took many years but finally it got to Key West where the port was deep enough to harbor big ships. Now the goods could be railed up through Florida and into the cities for great commerce
The story begins the day the Flaglers and a few elite friends ride the first RR trip to arrive in Key West. We then learn how successful the venture was and how Mr. Flagler married his third wife. His first two he lost to death and insanity. The new Mrs Flagler was quite young, very vivacious and extremely sure of herself. They were quite the pair. He eventually sold his RR to the South Eastern RR. The second act started 22 years later when the conductor shows up all upset at what he has just witnessed. He tells us the story of a terrible hurricane that takes the train right off the tracks and kills all the people for miles around who are living and working on these small keys dotting the bay and Gulf. They actually found body parts up in the trees once the seas had settled.
He explained how the barometric pressure dipped so low so fast that all their wrist watches exploded! The extremely low pressure allowed the wind to virtually pick up the water, pick up the ocean and carry it to shore washing over everything in its path! The RR never recovered and the Trucking industry began. The rails became Route 1 that we use today and the RR bridges are mostly still here being used for fishing bridges.
The Rangers did a splendid job .... how talented!! Actors as well as Rangers!