Monday, February 1, 2016

Edward Ball Wakulla Springs State Park and wildlife boat tour, Florida

Aayla and I had a wonderful day trip to Edward Ball Wakulla Springs State Park. The entrance fee to this park was $6 per car load and we thought it was a great park.

We started out by walking the new Hammock Spur Trail at .9 miles, it was about an hour to walk with Aayla. The main trail is a 6 mile one way walk and then we would have to turn around and walk back. That was too much for Aayla to do. You can also ride your mountain bikes here on the trail and that sounds like a great way to do the trail sometime.

This trail was a forest walk and started out at a couple of sink holes. One was filled with water and has become a natural aquifer.
This little cardinal was having a wonderful little bird bath on the edges of the pool.

We meandered through the the forest trail.

Love this lichen

Aayla examining the fungi

fungi... I can't pass by without a picture

Mommy this tree feels like a pineapple

Aayla carries Minnie along the hour trail

More gorgeous fungi

A little lizzard...Sierra will be sad to miss them as we saw four

Perhaps a turtle home?

Aayla teaching Minnie about the Bald Cypress trees

Bald Cypress trees

Ferns and moss...another fav of mine

Aayla gave Minnie a shoulder ride for most of the walk

A vulture one of the park rangers told us

Riding on her stick horse

When we were done our walk on the Hammock Spur trail we headed over to buy a ticket for the boat ride. We had to wait about 1/2 an hour so we played at the playground while we waited for our boat trip. It was a fair size playground and there were lots of nearby picnic tables with grills to cook on.

Then it was time to walk down to the boats. On the way there we stopped to read a few of the signs about the park.

And then headed down to the waters edge. In the summer the beach here and these swim platforms are full of visitors swimming and there is even a high dive platform.

We saw our boat arrive and headed to the dock.

Our selfie on the boat taken by Aayla
This boat tour cost an extra $8 per adult and $5 per child over and above the $6 entrance fee. Its roughly 45 mins but we were a little longer. The boat tour runs 365 days a year depending on the weather. I thought that was an amazing price for all the wildlife we saw. I would highly recommend you do it as well. I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.
A soft shell turtle in the front.
Not often seen here the ranger said

Hello Mr Alligator

Really had to crop this one but it was fun to watch this Osprey eat his lunch

Turtles on a log

Ibis in the tree. This reminded me of the front gate sign.

White Ibis

Turtles basking in the sun

Mr Smiley

Female Anthinga drying her wings

Can you see the manatee?

Another female Anthinga

A Double Crested Cormorant I believe

White Ibis

Great Egret

Little Blue Heron

Watersnake basking in the sun. Note the blue eyes?
He's getting ready to shed his skin!

Hello Mr Alligator

These vultures return here to these very trees every winter

Male Anhinga

more manatee

Great Blue Heron

View of the lodge from the boat tour
An excellent day all around and I am so glad Aayla and I decided to visit here.
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