We left Gulf Shores, Alabama on Monday, December 3rd. It felt good to leave the busy area and move north and a bit east to the Northern Panhandle of Florida. We left the busy area around Pensacola and then entered the Blackwater Wildlife Management area. This is a pine forest that has very little population. We drove a total of about 80 miles and arrived and a pretty little campground right on a lake. It was very quiet on this weekday. We really liked the vibe of this place.
|Here is a shot of our campsite from the other side of the lake|
|Here is a shot from the dam, looking down Bear lake.|
|Very well established trail|
|Nice views of the lake and some birds.|
We were enjoying our peace and quiet until well after dark on the second night we were at Bear Lake. About 8:30 a vehicle pulled into the spot next to ours. We are used to the noise made by other campers, but this was more than normal, but we just kept doing what we were doing. They did quiet down nicely about an hour after arriving, so all was well for sleeping.
We were a bit surprised the next morning to see some make shift tents and rain flies. and after a while we counted 8 children ranging in age from about 15 to 2. They were very well behaved and friendly, but they were our very close neighbors the rest of the time we were there. They were quiet and in bed by 8, but were up with the sun at about 7. So much for the peace and quiet.
|Family of 10, next door.|
|One of the many brides along the hike|
|I did encounter this garter snake on one of my hikes.|
Not a real exciting entry, but it was still a pretty great week. We really liked the campground that is run by the Florida State Forest. There are other campgrounds in this part of the state that are also State Forest Service campgrounds. This could be a great stopping point if you are traveling along the gulf coast and are looking for something different that the coastal route that you have done a number of times as we have.
We were heading to Orlando and our date with Disney, but first we had some time to kill. Come back to see what other new campgrounds we find along our travels.