Deas and I used to live in the panhandle of Florida, and we spent the past several winters there, first in the house we used to own, and last winter in the RV. We still love that area very much, but this year we decided to do something a little different and go further south in to Florida. So in early January we headed out, first to Rainbow Springs State Park. We had heard great things about this park and it did not disappoint. We had a large, back-in spot on out the outside loop, with lots of trees behind us and a great patio area.
After we got all settled in our campsite, we drove over to the other section of the park where the springs are. We got there right before closing, so we didn’t have much time to explore, but we did see some pretty colors in the sky as the sun set, and an interesting bird perched on a branch. I showed the picture of the bird to the ranger, and they told me it was an anhinga. The bill doesn’t seem long enough to me to be an anhinga though…but it’s an iphone pic so it might just be the angle. If anyone has an idea of what the bird is, I’d be curious to know.
We went back a couple days later to explore the springs side of the park with a little more time – it’s very lush and beautiful.
The spring water is a gorgeous shade of turquoise blue. It remind me a lot of Silver Springs State Park that we visited last year, except there are no manatees in this park due to a dam on the river.
Our next stop after Rainbow Springs was the Florida RV Supershow in Tampa. We decided to camp at the show, which meant we were in a big grassy field with a bunch of other RVs. But we could walk right to the show, which was nice because the show was HUGE and we did a lot of walking! We’re not in the market for a new RV, we just thought it would be fun to attend the show. And we did have a lot of fun. It’s a lively atmosphere with all kinds of stuff going on.
We spent a lot of time walking through many of the RVs, and realizing that many of them would never work for us, as Deas’s 6’5″ frame doesn’t fit it most of the showers. In some of them he barely even fit in the bathroom! Fortunately our RV has a nice tall shower that he fits in.
One of the highlights for me was visiting the Harvest Hosts booth at the show. We love Harvest Hosts and use it all the time, but this was my first time to meet Kim and Don in person. And imagine my surprise when I realized that one of the photos I sent them was the one that they choose for their Harvest Hosts banner! This picture was from a location we visited in Texas a couple years ago.
Dogs are allowed in the show, but not inside the RVs. We did bring the dogs with us a couple of times, so we had to take turns going inside. Jake could not have cared less, but Shorty and Nikki could not understand why they couldn’t go inside.
It’s always interesting to see how different all of the RVs are inside. We saw one thing I’ve never seen in an RV – a bar with barstools! And I will never understand why so many RV manufacturers put mirrors on the ceiling. I know mirrors can make things more spacious…but sorry, mirrors on the ceiling are not for me.
Another fun highlight of the show was getting to meet Joe and Kait of We’re the Russos. I had been following them on Instagram for awhile, and we loved meeting them. Kait cooked us a delicious meal one night, and she took this picture of the four of us after dinner.
Our friends Rob and Linda (My Quantum Discovery) were also at the show, and we had a great time hanging out with them too. Our last night they invited us to a big cook-out where they were camping, and Joe and Kait joined us, along with their beautiful Husky Leo.
I mentioned earlier that we were parked in a big grassy field. Well, it rained a couple of times that we were there and it started turning the field into a big, mucky mess.
All of those tire ruts were caused just by cars driving through the mud – we started getting a little concerned about what would happen when all the RVs started leaving and driving over the grass. On our last night, it rained again overnight, and we woke up feeling like we were camped in the middle of a marsh, complete with lots of water birds.
We packed up and got out of there and soon as we could. Joe and Kait later told us that they saw some RVs having to get towed out because of all the mud!
Next stop: Disneyworld!
15 thoughts on “Exploring more of Florida”
How cool to walk up to the Harvest Host booth and see one of your photos! Nice photo:)
Yep it was a nice surprise!
Funny about the HH photo!! I wish I knew the bird, but I’m not too privy on shorebirds that are farther south. Lord that spring looks so pretty!!
I guess I could just go look it in up in my bird book….lol.
Yeah, I WOULD HAVE looked for you but I left my Fl bird books in Florida. I only have a Rockies guide now : )
Yep that’s an Anhinga. Love those birds. If you are ever in the Everglades National Park in the winter make sure to take a walk on the Anhinga trail you might just see baby Anhingas. What a treat!
We like that part of Florida and will take a close look at this state park. I’m with you on the ceiling mirrors as they add cost, weight, and cleaning opportunities.
Excellent point about the weight – I hadn’t even thought of that!
It’s fun seeing where you all travel. Glad you can do those trips and keep the rest of us informed on those sometimes out of the way destinations.
We’re glad you are following along!
Looks like the seasonal colors of an angina to me. They are plentiful there.
Yes, I think it must be – at least I can’t figure out what else it could possibly be! The beak must just look short because of the camera angle.
Hi from Finland! Rainbow Springs looks lovely. Such fun photos of you hubby in the showers – those sure are for “short” people. We’re looking for a new boat which has a small restroom and sometimes even I, who am on the shortside, can’t stand up straight in them! But RV’s are so much more spacious all in all, so you would expect to be able to stand up straight in the shower 😛
Yes, I don’t think many RVs are made with tall people in mind! I just clicked over to your blog and saw all your posts on the Cape Coral area – so funny as that is where we are right now!
Wow how amazing to hear you are in Cape Coral! I hope you get to visit some of the places I’ve mentioned (there’s a few more posts on the area coming up :P) – thanks for stopping by!