December 28, 2003 - Everglades National Park

Everglades National Park was a place we had always wanted to visit.  We had been in the Everglades further north, but not the national park itself.   They had many informative signs all over the park:

The Everglades is a river of grass, starting at just a few feet above sea level the water flows slowly into the sea. 

We drove to the end of the road, Flamingo.  Here was an osprey with a fish:

Florida Bay at Flamingo (compare it to our 2006 visit after the hurricanes)

This is a Great Egret, notice the small head and the legs are dark.  Great White Herons are also seen here, but compare the picture of a Great White Heron we took on Sugarloaf Key to this one:

Close by in Eco Pond we saw this alligator:

An anhinga and a white ibis in the trees:

A butterfly:

We booked a boat tour for the 31st and found out the restaurant was actually good at Flamingo, we would not need to pack a picnic lunch on the 31st.

Then we headed up the road and went out each trail.  We took pictures, but they are not worth putting in the journal.  We really did enjoy the hikes and the informative signs, but it is best to see these places yourself.

Then we came to the Anhinga Trail and that was the place to see wildlife.  Here is a Great Blue Heron:

A little blue heron:

Many Anhinga in the trees:

Alligator gar, this picture has the contrast cranked up to see the fish:



Another alligator:

Another alligator gar:

It was getting late so we headed back and suddenly all the cars were pulling over.  It was the sunset that they were stopping for and it was worth stopping for.

We really enjoyed our first day in Everglades National Park.

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