Friday, March 22, 2019

Gators galore as we track this crafty creature in the Everglades

This alligator gave our tour boat the eye on a recent trip into the beautiful Everglades of Florida.

Everglades caper: on the gator trail with gorgeous scenery, critters, beauty   

The swampy marshes of the Everglades hide and protect alligators and more.

Nature lovers enjoy the outdoors at
Florida's Everglades Holiday Park. 






STORY By CHRISTENE MEYERS
PHOTOS By BRUCE KELLER

THE UNUSUAL merging of salt and freshwater makes Florida's Everglades the only location in America where both alligators and crocodiles live together! You can see the wonder yourself by taking an airboat trip in the Everglades.  We did this recently, taking to the waters in search of gators.
Visitors tour the small animal displays, with the opportunity
to get up close and personal with friendly gators and snakes.
We saw several in the wild, and an entertaining alligator  demonstration as "dessert." You can jet out into one of the world's most gorgeous attractions and get close-up later with more gators. We did just that at Everglades Holiday Park, outside of Fort Lauderdale. A great day!
Everyone has heard of the Everglades, a unique treasure of South Florida. But not all people venture into the largest remaining subtropical wilderness in the United States. We took a day to sample a small part of the park's 1.5 million acres of saw grass marshes, mangrove forests, and hardwood hammocks and wetlands. 
After your boat tour, Holiday Park
naturalists offer a fun gator show.



THE EVERGLADES is home to endangered, rare, and exotic wildlife. Fellow travel writers recommended the Everglades boat ride and we were not disappointed. Our amiable captain promised he'd find alligators in the swamps.  He revved up the boat and we held on to our hats as we sped around the wetlands to several spots with terrific viewing. As we zipped across the "River of Grass" between viewing sites, we bounced in our fast boat to the thunderous sound of the motor. Those little journeys were brief and we were safe and comfortable with our 30 fellow tourists from around the globe.
Alligators roam the Everglades; if you're lucky, you'll see one.
As we moved through the swamps, we noticed several small boats of fishermen -- "local folks," our guide said proudly -- bringing in the largemouth bass for which the park is famous, in fact revered. Fishermen cast off from the park's dock, or take a boat as part of a guided tour. The park offers boat and gear rentals, bait, licenses and everything else one needs to lure large mouth bass, peacock bass and catfish.
Swamp land of a unique habitat offers a happy place for the alligator.

The beauty of the wetlands make it a photographer's paradise.
WE WERE pleased to see two school groups visiting -- fishing, taking notes, listening carefully to guides.  Others were hosting guests on the boats, enjoying a celebration, spending an afternoon in a natural classroom for all ages. The park stages birthday parties and corporate events, with chartered excursions and packages. It also offers pick-up and drop-off options to take you from your hotel in Fort Lauderdale or Miami to this beautiful wildlife habitat.
WE APPRECIATE that the park is a family operation dating back nearly 40 years to 1982 when George Bridges left his tobacco farm to try his hand at the park.  He mortgaged his house and built his first airboat in the backyard, and the idea took off.  Everglades Holiday Park serves as South Florida's premier gateway to the Everglades, one of Florida's most interesting attractions.
The place is a half hour from Fort Lauderdale, on Griffin Road, and attracts tourists from Miami, too, for the marsh expedition, live alligator presentations, a small animal "zoo" with petting options, meal service, fun souvenir shop and fresh water fishing. 
WE HAD A magical day at the park, exploring the wonders of Florida's most enchanting natural resource: the pristine Everglades.
The magnificent ecosystem is an international treasure. The greenery alone satisfied our naturalists' appetites. The gators were frosting on the cake!


Practitioner Nathan Bruce-Black helps Bruce Keller learn how to fine tune
his hearing aids with a handy app. Keller's active life is enhanced greatly.
Bruce-Black is with AccuQuest in both La Jolla and Rancho Bernardo.
UP NEXT: Hooray for hearing, loud and clear. After years of struggling with hearing loss, our hero takes matters into his own hands. Read about Bruce Keller's long search to improve hearing compromised by years of deep-sea diving and on-site construction racket. We explore his struggle and his decision to go with AccuQuest, after months of research. We also explore the myriad ways in which his wonderful hearing aids have improved life for both of us!  Remember to explore, learn and live, and catch us weekends for a fresh take on travel, nature, the arts, family, health and adventure.

3 comments:

  1. Carolina AdventurersMarch 23, 2019 at 2:26 PM

    What fun. We grew up in the Carolinas and spent part of each winter in the Everglades. This is a great family outing, BTW. We were the middle of three generations last month and enjoyed the park you visited, too.

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  2. Wisconsin WanderersMarch 23, 2019 at 5:25 PM

    Great photos-- especially the top one -- wow! Fun piece, too.

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  3. Aussie OutdoorsmenMarch 24, 2019 at 10:23 AM

    We love this part of your country. Parts remind of our outback only more water of course..... good pointers.

    ReplyDelete