Little Manatee River backyard paddle

I wanted to do a quick paddle before the weather would change and use some gear because of an upcoming multi day paddle on the Withlacoochee River with Paddle Florida.

I went through the hole in the mangrove across from my house and headed to Gulf City and Little Cockroach Bay.

I got into Little Cockroach Bay and it could be the Everglades or the Keys.

I am so enamoured with the pelicans.

I was trying to decide which way to go Cockroach Bay or out to Tampa Bay as I paddled. A few hundred yards from Tampa Bay, I look over at St. Pete and it’s grey and the wind picks up. I realized when I heard the thunder it was time to come home.

More paddling later. Peace out. Tres dog

Apalachicola bike tour-Day 5-Cape San Blas bike trail-15 miles

I awoke with Jim preparing Nueske’s bacon and prepping to make the famous Ruskin Cafe omelets. Bacon, sautéed onion, fresh tomato and sharp cheddar cheese. Maui coffee. Slooow roll out this morning. It was 43 degrees.

We got to Salinas Park and it was cold with some serious wind.

Jim was a trooper putting up with my crazy ideas.

Did I say it was windy and cold.

We cut the ride short and went for BBQ and the NFL Playoffs. Heading out tomorrow. Great stay in the panhandle. Peace out Tres dog

Apalachicola bike tour-day 4- rain out

Awoke to cold and rain. An easy slow roll out breakfast of granola and french roast coffee. Some things done on the internet and I walked town a little for a stretch of legs.

Jim and I headed out to a kayak shop on St. George Island. We had a grocery store stop. We went back to Apalachicola and there were multiple BBQ vendors for the BBQ smoke off this weekend. We got pulled pork from the whole piece fresh with collard greens and baked beans with sausage and brisket. Also, ribs with creamy mac and cheese and sweet southern baked beans. We divided up the two BBQ plates. Unbelievable!

After lunch, I was able to teach Jim about a Japanese art playing card game very popular in Hawaii called Hana Fuda. My wife and I bought the cards on our last vacation to Hawaii and began playing every night. Jim was a quick learner and the game initially is very different than regular playing cards due to the number of suits, 4 in a regular deck and 12 in a Hana Fuda deck. We will play again due to the weather.

Easy evening with Carla and Jim homemade meatballs, sauce and pasta with salad and veggies. Hope to ride tomorrow. Peace out Tres dog

Apalachicola bike tour day 3-Cape San Blas-30.5 miles.

Jim and I had a really nice slow rollout after a hearty country breakfast of scrambled eggs with sharp Tillamook cheddar and chopped scallions, doubled cooked fried red potatoes with red onions, Nueske’s Applewood smoked bacon, english muffins with home made blueberry preserves and Kona coffee. Properly nourished, Jim and I went for a town cruise on bikes around Apalachicola.

We had great town ride and Jim went back. I headed for Cape San Blas.

I had turned onto Franklin County Route 30 and the sky was becoming darker and the temperature dropped noticeably…it was coming just not sure when.

I made the turn onto Cape San Blas Rd and their own bike path.

I got about 1/2 mile or so from the turn and it began to rain. My plan was ride up close to the entrance of the state park and Jim would meet me there and we would walk the coastal trail on the water a bit on the bay.

Jim scooped me up pretty quick and out to the park we went. St. Joe Shrimp Co lunch of Shrimp, Oysters, cheese grits, slaw and hush puppies. Raining really hard now. Expect same for tomorrow. Peace out Tres dog

Apalachicola Bike tour-travel day and Day 1-36 miles.

Editor’s note: I was able to attend the MLK Parade in Tampa with my incredible wife, Hillsborough County Commissioner and Vice Chairman, Mariella Smith, Monday. It was great

Out the door with one of my oldest friends, Jim, to ride from the beautiful downtown of Apalachicola.

The road in the panhandle

We are staying at 50 Ave F.

The place is magical. I will photograph more later. The weather is cooler and there maybe some soup making days ahead. We will take full advantage of it. Great breakfast and I headed out from the house over the Apalachicola Bridge onto the causeway to meet Jim and ride the causeway and bridge to St. George’s Island. Chamber of commerce day.

I met up with Jim and wow!

Out to St. George Island State Park.

The bike trail was always nice here.

Marsh fire outside of Apalachicola

Apalachicola Estuarine Nature Center.

Great day in Apalachicola. Peace out Tres dog