Sunday, January 4, 2015

2015 Florida Trip – Day 4 – A Drive Thru The Country

If I read the maps correctly, Cedar Key is the only real development along the west coast of Florida between Hudson and around the bend that begins the panhandle.  I assumed it was because it was protected land but after a closer look, it appears to be the lack of beaches.  Nearly all of the beaches north of Naples are on the barrier keys that line the coast ending at Tarpon Springs.

We went to Cedar key a couple of times and I’ll save that for a later post.  On this day, we went north of Cedar Key with the first stop being Shell Mound.  As we started up the trail, we ask an oncoming group how far it was to the shell mound and they chuckled and said we were on it.  As it turns out, the mound is 28 ft. tall, and covers five acres, and is the accumulation of 6000 years of shells and other bones.

We were expecting to find a big pile of shells but not what appeared to be just a hill covered with plant life, but plants that like high calcium levels.  These are shots up and down part of the trail.

These are from the mound top looking out on the water and down the slope of the mound.

This shot is along the road where the soil has eroded, clearly exposing the shells.

It's hard to get a real perspective of the mound due to the plant growth, but just imagine the amount of shells required to build a 28' high hill covering five acres - my granddaughter would say it took a ginormous number.  

From there we drove the Lower Suwannee Nature Drive but saw only one bird the entire trip.  After that, we stopped for lunch at a seafood dive named Treasure Camp on The Suwannee, where we dined on fried seafood.  I thought it had a great location alongside the river with the dining area open on three sides  - here are shots of the outside, the dining area, and out at the river.

I forgot to get shots of the food, which was good, but not impressive and we were pretty sure that little of it was made there but purchased already breaded.  We would eat there again but not make a special effort to do so.

From there, it was off to check out the town of Chiefland and make a grocery stop.  On the way home we stopped at Robinson’s Seafood Market  for a half sack of fresh oysters and 100 little neck clams to cook up for New Years.  

The fresh fish side on Robinson’s is run by a fourth generation area fisherman who catches most of what he sells.  When I tried the clams and oysters raw, they were very salty and I was advised that this was because they were so fresh - sounds good to me.

A very good day spent relaxing in the 30 degree-warmer-than-at-home temperatures.

Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.


12/30/14 event date


  1. Gotta love that warmer weather , enjoy!

  2. That area looks very much like old Florida untouched by time. I wouldn't have been able to resist the clam sign. Looking forward to seeing you guys soon.

  3. Happy New Year Year, Larry. It sounds like you and Bev are enjoying the seasonal gypsy life. I like your tent :-) A gal could get to like that. Hugs and blessings...Mary.

  4. We are still in NC in the cold. Glad you are warm. Visit us on the east coast if you get a chance. Again, Happy New year.

  5. Larry, Keep up the tour notes! Laurie and I will be heading back down that way later this year and places to eat plus sights to see are most appreciated... FYI...It will hit 7 or 8 degrees for a low here later this week...and you're going to miss it! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  6. This trip sounds like it is going to be a fun trip and I know how much you like oysters. :) Have a great time.

  7. It looks like you are having another fun rv trip! Looking forward to seeing how you cooked the clams & oysters for New Years.

  8. The shell mound is mind boggling! People dumped refuse for centuries and it created the highest hill around. Amazing. I guess that at 5 acres, and covered with trees, you wouldn't notice it. And I'll bet your clams and oysters were really delicious.

  9. Sounds like a fun day! That shell mound would be so interesting to see!

  10. Watch out driving there at night -- there are a ton of deer.

  11. What an interesting place! We love finding those whenever we travel too! I enjoy your travel posts, Larry!

  12. Yep, Florida cracker country. Love it. That dock pic makes me want to do some redfish fishing. LMAO about the shell mound. I've been to many shell mounds since I grew up in Timuquana territory. I grew up in flatland Florida so I can appreciate thinking this was a hill before we moved to Tennessee where you actually have, you know, geological formations.


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