December 27-31, 2003 - Florida City, FL (Leaving January 3)

We reluctantly left Sugarloaf Key and drove 111 miles back to Florida City, FL.  Florida City and its neighbor Homestead are south of Miami and just north of the route to the Florida Keys.  The main entrance and road for Everglades National Park comes out of Florida City.  We stayed at Goldcoaster, which is a mobile home park with spaces for RVs.  The campsites are huge:

In Goldcoaster we saw our first 1.2meter internet dish, which will work in more places and has less problems with rain fade than the 0.74meter dish we use.  It is too big for a portable system:

We had been deciding we needed a new motorhome and had researched brands.  Dutch Star was on the top of our list and this color scheme, green and gold, was our favorite.  This is a 2003 Dutch Star that was camped at Goldcoaster:

This is Florida, here are the plastic flamingos:

We drove back into Miami and returned the unused snorkeling fins since we didn't use them.  It was easy to return them since the store was set up for Christmas returns.

December 28th we ventured into Everglades National Park for the first time.

December 30th we drove over to Biscayne National Park and looked around.  You can just see the southern edge of Key Biscayne from the national park:

We did see one fish, this photograph has the contrast cranked up so the fish is more visible:

We booked a snorkeling trip for New Years Day and left since most of the national park is underwater.

Then we went to Big Cypress National Preserve for the rest of the day.

December 31 we went back to Everglades National Park

New Years Eve they had a big party at Goldcoaster that we didn't pay for.  They had a band, supposedly one of "The Platters", and they were loud.  We were a ways from the clubhouse and it was loud where we were.  For once we were awake at midnight, not that we wanted to be.

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