Reflection of a Bald Cyprus on the Withlacoochee River
Photograph - Digital Image
The Silver Lake Recreation area in Florida is mostly a camping destination. It also has two trailheads, one that heads into one of my favorite areas to hike, Croom. But a hidden gem is the trail along the Withlacoochee River. The River trail is about five miles long and parallels the river and a paved trail. Mostly the trail is pretty empty. This has to be one of the best hikes in Florida for photographers. As you hike you see these wonderful old Bald Cypress trees, that look to be black if the light is right, and occasional views above river. You go through some old agricultural lands that are now covered with Sand Pine trees. The interesting aspect of the river is the presence of the rusty color of tannin (or maybe iron) that contrasts so well with the darkness of the trees, the blue sky and the green. It gives you the magic of all the colors of the rainbow.
According to the State of Florida website, Withlacoochee is an Indian word meaning "crooked river," which accurately describes the river as it makes its 70-mile journey from the Green Swamp in northern Polk County to the Gulf of Mexico at Yankeetown. Withlacoochee State Forest has several waterways that flow through different portions of the property. The Withlacoochee River, Little Withlacoochee River and Jumper Creek have all been designated as Outstanding Florida Waters. The most notable is the Withlacoochee River, which meanders through 13 miles of the forest. The land was purchased many years ago to protect the water supply.
March 20th, 2021
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