How does a train eat? Chew, chew - Garfield and Tango Travel the Long and Winding Road - CycleBlaze

March 26, 2022

How does a train eat? Chew, chew

Tallahassee bike day

It was sure nice to see another sunshiny morning with clear skies, although it was cold at first - in the 40's. So we had to wait a few hours for it to warm up enough to do our ride. 

Today we're doing part of the Tallahassee -St. Mark's Rail Trail which is Florida's first paved trail. It follows the route of the Tallahassee Railway, the state's first and longest operating railroad. 

The rail line was created in the mid-1800's to transport cotton from plantations to awaiting ships at St. Mark's on the banks of the St. Mark's River. In the 1850's, the railroad also moved Confederate troops and supplies to strategic points. This line was closed in 1983 and turned into a rail trail. 

We loaded the bike up in the truck and drove to a parking lot on the trail just south of the town of Woodville. By noon we were heading south on the trail. 

What a great find! We had talked to lots of people in this area, even at the campground, and they had all mentioned this trail. But since one start point was 8 miles from our RV park, involving lots of hills and heavily trafficked roads, we hadn't wanted to go that route. 

It was a beautiful day and lots of folks were out enjoying their walks or rides. And it was FLAT!!!!! Yes sir, we had finally located a flat cycling route! (although I did miss zooming down a steep hill at 30 mph)

The trail was in good condition, and traveled through woods, swampy areas and by occasional homes. This is a state trail and they also had installed restrooms and benches at several locations. 

When the trail reached St. Marks, it ended at a parking lot. I had wanted to see the St. Mark's lighthouse but we didn't know the exact route to get there so we went into town where the road soon ended at a marina. Hmmm - where is this lighthouse?

Don decided to go the opposite direction on the road and see what we could find. That took us along the river and some nice homes before ending again at a fishing camp that had RV parking, a marina and cabins/motel rooms. Next door was the San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park which I had also wanted to visit. 

It was supposed to be the home of a rare red-cockaded woodpecker which we didn't spot. But we were more interested in the history of this former fort that was once held by Spanish, English, American and Confederate forces. 

In 1679, the Spanish built the first fort. In the early 18th century, the British took over as they invaded Florida. Then in the 1800's, Andrew Jackson occupied the fort. We walked around a bit, although there wasn't much remaining except for some stone foundations and mounds. 

Back on the bike, we returned to the trail and back to our starting point. Don had found out that the lighthouse was 16 miles away so that wasn't going to work today for a ride. From there we headed home after a stop at the seafood market to buy some octopus and grouper. We had decided to give grilling our own seafood a try tonight. 

Don came out with just the octopus saying the grouper came only in large portions and was too expensive. And unfortunately, the octopus was frozen so we'll have to put it in the frig to thaw before cooking it tomorrow.

The rest of the day and evening was pretty quiet but warm out, so we could sit outside on the patio until long after dark. I do have to mention that despite there being plenty of swampy areas around here, we haven't seen any mosquitoes at all. Not that I'm complaining!

The Tallahassee-St. Mark's trail was perfectly straight and flat.
Heart 0 Comment 0
Nice wild flowers today.
Heart 0 Comment 2
Bill ShaneyfeltLooks like wood sorrel.

https://calphotos.berkeley.edu/cgi/img_query?query_src=photos_index&rel-taxon=begins+with&where-taxon=Oxalis+latifolia
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1 month ago
Crab traps galore!
Heart 0 Comment 0
What kid wouldn't like this ship/playhouse? It even had a pirate flag flying - complete with skull and cross bones! Ahoy matey!
Heart 0 Comment 0
Another pretty wild flower.
Heart 0 Comment 2
Bill ShaneyfeltSpiderwort. There are about half a dozen species of blue spiderwort in that area according to one website.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tradescantia
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1 month ago
marilyn swettGood one again, Bill!
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1 month ago
The unusual blossom on this tree caught my eye.
Heart 0 Comment 2
Bill ShaneyfeltMaybe white fringetree?

https://florida.plantatlas.usf.edu/photo.aspx?ID=485
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1 month ago
marilyn swettHuh - didn't know about that tree. Thanks again.
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1 month ago
Port Leon was originally a town on the Gulf. It was destroyed by a hurricane in 1843.
Heart 0 Comment 0
We didn't take this one.
Heart 0 Comment 0
Not much remains of the fort at San Marcos de Apalache except for these stone foundations.
Heart 0 Comment 0
We found this impressive house along the St. Mark's River. I wonder if they can see the Gulf from the top floor? Although it's enclosed as a garage, there would be pilings supporting the house since they are in a hurricane prone area. I bet they have an elevator as well!
Heart 0 Comment 0

Today's ride: 21 miles (34 km)
Total: 363 miles (584 km)

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Comment on this entry Comment 2
Scott AndersonYou had me with the title today. I can’t believe I’ve never heard this before, but very cute.
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1 month ago
marilyn swettThanks - always trying to pep up my journals!
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1 month ago