A 4 park morning

It was hot as usual at the end of July. I headed out early one morning for a walk at Fred Howard Park in Tarpon Springs. I hadn’t spent a lot of time here, only driven through. I parked in the shaded area of the park and walked out on the causeway that leads to the beach. I was hoping for a breeze but didn’t get much of a whiff this morning but it was a beaufiful morning and I saw several dolphins far out in the gulf.

After my walk at Howard Park, I stopped at nearby Sunset Beach. It’s a small spit of sand but also a small piece of heaven the morning I was there. I imagine it’s packed on the weekends but early this Wednesday morning it was quiet and I sat on the bench for a while, watching more dolphins go by.

And if you forgot to bring a book with you to read on the beach, there’s a free library in the parking lot.

Another quick stop was the Anclote River Park, just north of Tarpon Springs.

A replica of the Anclote lighthouse was in the parking lot. The actual lighthouse is on Anclote Key, only accessible by boat.

One last stop was the Anclote Gulf Park just a few minutes away. I walked out on the long fishing pier and was hoping for dolphins here but didn’t see any.

Inspire Me Monday

A beautiful morning out

I love coming down to North Shore Park to walk. It sits on the bay side of St. Pete and the water is usually pretty calm. There’s a long paved trail that’s always busy with joggers and walkers. Occasionally I find an interesting bird.

Far out across the bay you can barely make out two dolphins coming up for air as they cruise by the pelicans. Even from far away it’s cool to see the dolphins.

The tide was low and the birds were pretty far out in the muck.

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The perfect spot

More shots from my sunset walk at the Dunedin marina.

You can see why this is one of the best places to watch the sun go down but don’t tell anyone else. It already gets crazy crowded.

People in the surrounding neighborhoods ride over in their golf carts since parking is limited in this area. I park several blocks over and walk in to the marina. Many of them decorate their carts which makes it more fun.

I decided to head back to my car before it got too dark but I stopped for one last shot in front of the sailboats. All shots taken with my phone.

SkyWatch Friday

One last walk

I got up early one morning in late September to take my last walk around the neighborhood. It wasn’t my last walk anywhere, just around this neighborhood. After living here for 17 years, we moved about 20 minutes away so Brett could be closer to work and it was time to downsize. It was before the sun came up and a faint rainbow was visible as the ducks flew by. I said goodby to Blondie and her grown babies. I’ll miss those creme colored mallards.

The ducks stopped by the yard days before we moved. It was the last of the bird seed so they were going to have to scrounge somewhere else.

Backyard skies on our last week here. I’ll miss the open sky but we are moving to a heavily wooded area and it will be nice to be in the shade now and see different wildlife. I’ll be posting pictures of the critters near our new home soon.

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Not that early for sunrise

Sunrise at East Beach at Fort Desoto. No, I wasn’t up that early. This was in late October before the time changed so it was right before 7:30. There was a small cloud right above the bridge that kept the sun from being clear but it was still a great sky.

As I stood there watching the sun come up, I could see the frigatebirds starting to circle high up in the sky. They were coming from across the bay and then ended up right over my head.

Once the sun was up it was time to go hang out with the white pelicans.

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Road trip to Nature’s Coast

Early morning at Pine Island beach, north of Tarpon Springs and south of Cedar Key. I had not spent any time in this area and it’s a beautiful quiet area. At least it was in October.

I was hoping to find some new shorebirds here but it was the same old ones that I can find in my usual spots near home.

Fiddler crabs along the shoreline.

Just me and my shadow on the boardwalk, looking out on the gulf.

This is a small beach compared to beaches in the Tampa bay area. It’s a little off the beaten path so it might not get the crowds in the summer that we see on Clearwater beach or St. Pete beach. It was a beautiful morning and I was glad to be out of the house and out on the road.

The drive into the beach is a long 2 lane road with marsh on both sides. The first two shots were looking right and the bottom two were looking left as you drive in. This is why they call this area the “Nature coast”.

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Rush hour traffic on the bay

Things were quiet in the area in late October. Fall migration was pretty slow but I still wanted to get out for a walk so I headed to North Shore park that sits on the bay near downtown St. Pete.

It looked like rush hour traffic far out in the bay with all of the sailboats. People were also kayaking and wind surfing. It was still warm out so the water was the place to be.

I had a nice walk along the water before heading home for lunch.

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A beautiful morning out

Bees and berries at Crescent Lake Park.

I found the otter again but this time he was very elusive. I got a quick peek and then he disappeared for good.

This gull should have been over at the beach. Somehow he managed to snag a small fish at the lake.

I was standing under some trees looking for the otter and heard some noise over my head. I looked up and found two juvenile anhingas looking down at me. They must be late babies. There was a tiny nest that they had outgrown but they were still too young to fly yet. Mom was sitting high up in the next tree.

After leaving Crescent Lake Park, I made the quick drive over to North Shore beach near downtown St. Pete. Someone had recently painted the small concrete pier.

Another beautiful day at the bay.

P.S. Happy Birthday to my sister Debbie!

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After dinner walk on the water.

This summer I’ve been going for a long walk on Sunday nights after an early dinner to get out of the house and stretch my legs. Just me and my phone. I’ve been taking some short road trips to go somewhere other than my neighborhood (even my neighborhood walls are closing in on me). There was a good chance of rain but I still headed over to Dunedin (a little less than 30 minutes from my house) to walk along the intercoastal waterway. The sun peaked out a few times during my walk but the above are the shots I got along my walk. Most of the people were at the pier or on main street so the neighborhood street I walked on was quiet. This won’t be my last walk here.

On the way home, stopped at a red light, the storm was moving in.

SkyWatch Friday