Thursday, February 28, 2013

Hiking in the Rain

Sometimes the Cypress Trees ARE looking back at you!
My wife and I used to hike more often, way before the kids and jobs took over our lives.  Still, we can get out and enjoy life together.
Sunday was one of those days, where my wife wanted to record some peaceful outdoor videos for her web site and I also needed to get out on a short hike at the same time.  We drove to Spring Hammock Preserve which is nearby, after we had lunch and the morning rains had ended.  Temperatures were in the mid 70's and it was very cloudy.  I wrote about the old Cypress trees at this county park as More Big Trees last October.  We parked the car and walked a few yards to Osprey Trail, the road to the famous "mud walk" for elementary children living in central Florida.  A couple passed us on mountain bikes, but it seemed there was no one else at the park, it was so quiet.  The children from the mud walk were all gone from when we were here for a short walk last week.
Along The Boardwalk In The Rain.
We stopped at a bridge over the slough (called a "sloo" around here) by Osprey Trail and shot a minute of quiet video in between the jet planes passing overhead.  More video was shot at the next slough crossing also.  We hiked on down to the wetlands area and followed the boardwalk to the left through a mixed hardwood swamp to a wonderful view of Lake Jesup.  With the low clouds, splatters of rain, and bird calls, the view was gorgeous, but it was too dark for good video.  The ancient Cypress trees along the boardwalk, with swarms of Cypress Knees around them were awesome.  I had not seen the many Cypress Knees the last time I was here because the water was over a couple feet deep then.
A Forest Of Cypress Knees.
We decided to return along the Limpkin Trail which follows Soldier Creek back to our parked car.  This section of the trail needs much maintenance work and we teased about the trail being closed, and that we didn't know about that.  While shooting video of the creek the sky opened up with rain.  My wife took the umbrella from my pack and I put on my hiking rain coat.  We have always enjoyed the solitude of walking in the rain, the peace and quiet, and the different perspective nature gives you when she is wet.  We then slipped and slid our way along the muddy trail to get to the way back to Osprey Trail on the Cypress Tree boardwalk.  The Limpkin Trail was much like hiking in the Smokey Mountains with all the roots and the up and downs and the greased mud slickness during the rain, back when we went there twice a year to escape the Florida heat.  The two mountain bikers we met at the trail junction were also slipping and sliding and pedaled back through the mud along the creek trail.
The rain eased off, but not until we had shot another video with the peaceful sounds of nature.  My wife was very pleased with the rainy hike on the trail.   "The rain just made it better", she said smiling.


  1. I enjoy hiking in the rain as well. It seems to drive the masses indoors which makes popular hikes that much more enjoyable. Plus, the sound of rain falling on leaves is nice. Nice photo of the tree, that's a gnarly looking piece.

    1. Thanks. Maybe I'll see you while hiking out in the rain sometime!