Regretfully leaving Cedar Keys

We have a wonderful time at Cedar Keys for the last 6 nights but tomorrow (14/08 or 08/14 in USA) we move on to a 1 night stop in a camp ground in Tallahassee and then on the next day to Pensacola for 3 nights.

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What can I say about Cedar Keys except superb!!

We spent the first day chilling and deciding that this was so nice we would stay here for a few days longer and organise all the camp grounds up to and including Houston as Tim needed the camp ground address for the Canadian equivalent of an ESTA.

Day 2 we set off exploring and first of all went to see a Shell Mound about 5 miles from here.

Apparently built (well more just dumped in a huge pile)  by the indigenous population about 6,000 years ago, they fished and farmed shellfish which is how the mound came about.There were some people fishing here with more modern equipment that advised us to come back later as it would be a very hot walk. So we just admired the scenery and spotted crabs and fish!!

We then went into Cedar Keys to explore it further and had lunch at a very nice bar on the waterfront. Picked up some brochures for the round the bay trip.

We then decided to make our way back to the shell mound.

What our advisors had forgotten to tell us, was that later in the evening the mosquitos were out!! Despite copious amounts of insect repellent we got to the mound and I took one picture as by that point were being eaten alive!!

Not a very good picture but I took it and legged it back to the car as fast as I could!! Closely followed (well sort of) by Anne who was moving as fast as I seen her move for years!! Not a pleasant experience, but the manager at the camp ground had warned us if we going to walk the trails to cover ourselves in “bug repellent”.

The next day we decided to go and explore a town we had come through on the way to Cedar Keys called Dunnellon. We discovered it had a Walmart which solved the problem of extra bedding for Tim’s visit, plus extra supplies of bug repellent!!

Had lunch in “Swampy’s Bar & Grill” which was right next to the Rainbow river, which had people swimming down it in rubber rings or just paddling kayaks.

The Florida railway still comes through Dunnellon but no longer goes to Cedar Key as it used to so there was a Station still here.

Good job too as at that point another Florida thunderstorm struck and we had to shelter under the eaves next to that sign for about half an hour while everything bar us got drenched!!

Looked at various other shops and walked back to the car via the Fire Station.

Then we drove back to Cedar Keys and on the way spotted other railway relics from the days before railway got a Beeching axe applied to it.

Then on Saturday (yesterday) we decided to take the round the Bay tour. We got to the dock at 10.30am (minor miracle considering our current life style!!) only to find they were worried about an imminent thunderstorm and would we mind waiting until the 2pm boat.

So we walked back into the town via the boat key where everyone launches their boats to go fishing (never seen so many trucks and boat trailers) to Holey Moleys to get a doughnut and coffee.

After our coffee and doughnuts we visited the town museum which turned out to be very interesting experience , with three very interesting rooms full of all sorts of articles and artefacts plotting Cedar Keys history, plus a house out the back that was set up to look like it would have been in the early 1900s. Cedar Keys itself is being rebuilt on a regular basis after hurricanes blow through or storm surges caused by hurricanes swamp the place. The last one was in only 2015, but the town looked in remarkably good shape.

Then onto the boat trip. Yet again a wonderful guide, who knew the local area very well, gave us a running commentary for our almost 2hr boat ride. We saw everything from jumping dolphins …

to Pelicans …

and Ospreys (with fish!!).

Learnt even more about Cedar Keys history and its now leading role in the Clam industry (it farms 50m clams a year).

Remarkable scenery all around us.

Our guide in the cap.

We then went back to the car and drove around the rest of the key.

 The airport

 Ooops

 Sign on the road into Cedar Keys.

As I said when I started this post we will be sorry to leave, but in the words of Arnie “we will be back”!!

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