Monday, September 6, 2010
HELL is full of Cypress Trees and Lilypads (Brown and occasionally Red)
when I talked last year about the wildness of natural Florida I missed a few places...namely that east bank of the mostly undeveloped Apalachicola River, with the Apalachicola National Forest, a town called Sumatra, and the most unwelcoming-named parkland ever, Tate's Hell State Forest!
When we first arrived the swamp was strangely silent, and the complex network of gravel roads was very confusing with occasional mudholes. But after a night camping under bright moonlight with a shore breeze, we found the forest teeming with wildlife- deer, an eagle, owls just after dawn, however they make themselves scarce so you won't see them unless you're on foot in the woods. Dwarf- cypress trees stand among the pines in some swampier areas, and there are interesting finds in others...and a fountain spring by our campsite, near the slow, dark waters of the New River..
for the story of Cebe Tate and the origin of the forest name...http://www.tateshell.com/ and for official park information...http://www.fl-dof.com/state_forests/tates_hell.html