Mike and I were driving through miles and miles of flat, treeless pastures that just seemed to go on and on. We were really wondering what kind of boring ass park we were going to be staying at for the next couple days. Then out of nowhere this park pops up and it’s amazing. As you turn into the park you’re welcomed by majestic trees covered in romantic Spanish moss. The almost 5,000 acre park consists of several lakes, swamp land, and a lush green camping area. The whole thing is like an oasis in the desert.
There are several miles of trails around the lakes that are wide, well maintained, and easy to navigate. We really wish we had our bike trailer for Hugo (it burned in the fire) so we could take him riding on the trails. We did walk several of the trails and this place is really a bird watchers paradise. We saw most of the bird activity around Elm Lake.
But the coolest part of this park by far is the alligators! There are supposed to be over 300 alligators in this park. On our walk around 40 Acre Lake we only saw two of the 300. But we did get to see one pretty up close as he passed under a bridge as we were approaching. He moved so quietly, we almost missed him. Around Elm Lake we saw another four. We were surprised at how big the gators we saw were. All of them were at least six feet long. There are lots of rules posted throughout the park as to how to interact and maintain distance from them. And obviously no dogs in the water!
The camp grounds here were really nice and spacious. Giant old oaks soared over the area and the parking pads were paved and fairly level. Unfortunately, we only were able to spend two days at this park. We wish we could have stayed longer but the campground was booked for the weekend. There were trails we left unexplored and there is an observatory that is only open on Saturdays so this is definitely a park we need to come back to sometime in the future.