This is another layover day, I'm in no hurry to get anywhere. Morning camp at Northwest Cape Sable, view facing South
I walk back down to the poor Manatee...sad, sad, sad. Birds are starting to fly in and pick but the wind is building and waves have started to grow keeping them at bay. Its thick skin is starting to blister. No sign of anyone around, I can see miles either way down the beach, I'm on the tip of NorthWest Cape Sable.
Start of a 10+ mile walk with no one around. Mushrooms on the beach. These are the first mushrooms I have ever seen growing on any beach, need to check into these.
Some type of fruit with a lot of seeds.
Wild fuzzy plant?
Just liked this.
Enjoying the scenery. Beaches always seem so clean to me, I guess because most everything is washed over and over by the constant wind and waves. The backcountry sites are interesting but given a choice I would take a beach anyday, and fires at night!
Near the far end of my walk it looks as though a atomic bomb has blasted all the trees along the beach.
This lure is hanging about 10' off of the ground between some tree limbs. No one would be fishing up here so the hurricane must have blown it up in this position. It is out over the water or I would have tried to get it down. Some poor unsuspecting bird could possibly get tangled in the line.
Eerie looking trees against a nice shade cloud. I'm watching out for flying monkeys.
Here it looks like Survivor Man was making some type of shelter with driftwood and crab trap line.
Returning to camp the wind was getting quite strong. I would not want to be out in this today.
Set solar panels up to charge AA camera batteries. Put them up on the firewood to try and keep some of the blowing sand out.
Decided to take another 5 or so mile hike to the South. More plastic crab traps...
The Park Ranger returns to check on the Manatee, he waves and zips on.
This is quite interesting...when I first looked at this thing I thought it was some coral until I turned it over. Then determined it to be a kids space man or the like. When I returned home I was reading of other adventurous folks travels in the Everglades and I came upon a photo of the same man. "The Conquistador" Dave and two friends did a trip similar but in reverse, Chokoloskee to Flamingo and return, 8 days in kayaks all paddle, Wow agressive adventure! Take a look here Paddle Across Florida Look around through his Everglades Adventure photos under Past Trips to find the Conquistador. This is the same Conquistador as in Dave's photo from NW Cape Sable a few months later...
Yes, another plastic Stone Crab trap. Man do I hate these things...
Score...I find a spare paddle, the same exact brand and size I am using. There are no markings on it to determine the original owner so I will do my share to clean up the beach and add to my paddle inventory. It does have a slight warp on one side of the blade, maybe a little close to a campfire...
Had brought a spare paddle, I now have three.
Back at camp for a snooze. Notice my NPS permit hanging inside to dry out from yesterday. You are instructed to attach the permit to your tent when you leave your campsite.
You guessed it, bacon and eggs, this time for lunch! The weather forecast has small craft warnings up for this area and the wind is blowing 15-20 mph so I must try and cook in the lee of my tent or risk additional seasoning sand.
More decisions...the weather forecast is now calling for small craft warnings Wednesday to Friday at 20-25 mph out of the East with tomorrow (Tuesday) just slightly lower but still East. I'm thinking I must take a chance and try for Flamingo but tacking into the wind in these conditions will be very difficult if not down right dangerous. You can't tell in these photos but offshore the waves and wind are really whipping. If I don't try tomorrow I could be stuck here for many days.
I take more photos and think about it.
Bought this gator at the Flamingo Marina store, it has survived to now so I ask if it can take a day of dunking in the Gulf and Florida Bay. No response so I go back to the radio for another listen.
These vines grow far out on the beaches, the leaves are almost wax like and some have very flat leaves such as these.
Another hardy green beach plant, how do they do it?
As the sun sets I contemplate what a day on the open water could hold tomorrow.
Thunder storms are still around, this one over Florida Bay where I will be heading should I leave in the morning.
One more radio forecast, no changes to the synopsis. I decide that I must at least attempt it in the morning. If it is life threatening I'll turn around and either try a landing nearby or come back here. The further I get around the cape the more the wind will drive waves up the beaches making landing next to impossible for a loaded canoe. I'm enjoying this fire at the moment but the wind is supplying so much Oxygen the wood is burning twice as fast as normal. Well I'd better get some rest because I know tomorrow will be a test of man and machine. Good evening...
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