Sunday, November 2, 2014

Titusville Municipal Marina - Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge

A walk through a hammock at Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge
The winds finally dipped under 20 kts today and the temps were in the 60's so we opt'ed to explore the Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge. We've been there before but with the seasons and the flyway there's always something new to see. The refuge itself was something of an afterthought from the Kennedy Space Center. They didn't need all the acreage so they turned over part of it for a refuge.

It's situated on a major flyway for migrating birds so there's always something going on. They've installed wooden walkways at several places for a better view of the plants and wildlife without disturbing the brush and there are several drive through areas with pullovers for seeing the latest fauna in town.

The ocean side of Merritt Island had been disturbed greatly by the 30 kt winds
Black Point was not open so we took a less traveled road and found that it was even further out in the boonies than Black Point. We were promised that the road had just been "scraped" (leveled by road equipment) so we set out with confidence. The road was fine at first but then it deteriorated into a one lane road (barely!) with grass in the middle out in the middle of nowhere. We could only do 5 mph due to the numerous pot holes we had to avoid but still was moving along until we met an oncoming car! There was no room to pass. We both rotated our mirrors against our cars and I backed up to a spot that marginally offered just a little more room. The oncoming car then slowly passed with no room to spare. I wouldn't recommend this route to anyone.

We say three alligators in the refuge, we didn't get out of the car
We finally made it out and headed south to pick up the latest crop of Florida grapefruit. We were not disappointed. There is simply nothing like fresh grapefruit, there's nothing to compare to up north. The high Monday is supposed to break 70 for the first time in the last two days, we're looking forward to that! I'll turn in my $10/day car on Monday and do boat work the rest of the week.