Archive for recreation

Just linking

I just found out about the Drought Diary blog by Palm Beach Post reporter Bob King. Interesting stuff — especially the post Are we all in a drought? Really?

I have always preached the necessity of having a campground reservation. Sun-Sentinel columnist Ralph de la Cruz is now lamenting the fact many campsites are booked 11 months in advance after he couldn’t get a campsite for a father/daughter camping outing because everything was already booked. It’s a combination of not having enough public campgrounds, he says, and the fact many people practically live at Florida campgrounds during the winter….

Should conservation land be used to support alternative energy? Many people in St. Lucie are saying no, according to Craig Pittman at the St. Petersburg Times.

And Real Simple magazine has a feature on its Web site about compensating for your carbon footprint. Other links on the page take you to information about cutting energy costs and ways to reuse items in your home.

Finally, there’s an interesting Q&A about the environmental impact of drinking orange juice from concentrate vs. fresh at Slate. Because Florida is the orange juice king, I thought this was interesting on a local angle.

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Comment today to refurbish Flamingo

Flamingo, Everglades National Park

Thanks to a Sierra Club list, I found out today is the last day for public comments on what happens to Flamingo in Everglades National Park, which was ruined by hurricanes Katrina and then Wilma in 2005.

The picture above is a photo I took on New Year’s Day 2006, after Everglades National Park had just started letting people back into the area. I don’t know why they allowed people to visit Flamingo, because nothing was there — you couldn’t launch a boat, nothing was open, and what you see in the picture — that’s what things were like. A ranger sat at a picnic table to tell the few of us who showed up more pictures of the destruction.

This is what Flamingo could look like:

Now there’s a chance to rebuild Flamingo, and you can comment on it here.

Picture from Miami New Times

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Trying to do the right thing can cost you

It’s been a tradition for me for many years to take the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend and go camping. My husband works a regular weekday-type job, so with this day off, it gives us a chance to go camping somewhere for a long weekend. January’s weather can be testy, but at least it’s not broilingly (is that a word?) hot.

This year, our planned camping trip fell through for a variety of reasons. We had reservations to camp at a Florida state park. I called ReserveAmerica the day we were supposed to arrive. I figured if I canceled my reservation, the campsite could be given to someone else — that’s all I was trying to do.

But the reservations agent told me she recommended against canceling because not only would I pay for the campsite that night (that’s ReserveAmerica’s policy if you cancel the day of), but I’d also get a $10 cancellation fee.

So I said, all right, how about if I cancel tomorrow night’s reservation? I had two nights.

The reservation agent said she couldn’t do that and again recommended against canceling.

So here I was, trying to do the right thing by putting my campsite back into the system for another camper — only to be told I’d be socked with additional fees.

Penalized for trying to do the right thing.

Just wanted folks to be aware.

If you need to cancel a reservation, try to do it as soon as possible to avoid having to pay for a campsite you won’t be using.

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Possible man-made surfing reef being studied

Can you build a man-made surfing reef, and would it translate to tourism dollars? That’s what Brevard County is asking in approving a study to find out, Florida Today reports. The county also wants to make sure the reef will be ecologically sound.

Many surfers already flock to Sebastian Inlet and the Cocoa Beach pier. But a reef made for surfing might bring even bigger waves than the ones that already exist in Brevard.

What do you think?

Image from NASA

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Kayak around Florida

Back after a trip and hectic holiday….

Have you ever thought about kayaking / paddling around the entire Florida peninsula? It could be done. Especially when the Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail is completed, which should be soon, according to the Tallahassee Democrat. Some parts of the Florida paddling trail already marked and ready for paddlers.

This is going on my wish list! How about you?

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Click and hike

Psst! Are you a hiker? Or even just a sometime walker in the woods? Check out Florida Hikes, a great site by Florida hiking expert and author Sandra Friend.

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