Snow in the Florida Keys?

Dec. 12, 2010   Just returned from the Florida Keys.  Stayed for a week during one of the coldest weeks the Keys have seen in a long time.  We did not see snow or even close to it--but with temps in the low 50's and winds of 20-35, it felt mighty chilly.  Traveling with our boat, kayaks and bikes, we had planned on extensive outdoor experiences.  Mother Nature created a bit of a sidestep for us.  We stayed at a spot in Marathon Key (located in the middle of the keys) with the boat docked outside.

Spend our first day researching our campsite for Spring, 2011.  Bahia Honda State Park is a popular destination, so we wanted to scope out the layout and pick our spot.  The park provides a deep natural channel, sandy beaches and snorkeling opportunities at Looe Key National Marine Sanctuary.  Walking the beach, we discovered "shell" trees.  Wind blown trees,  stripped of their leaves--but covered with shells on the branches added by folks walking by.

Drove to Key West, the following day, with the bikes hitched to the back of the car. Upon our arrival, we parked our Honda at the first parking area we found.  Spent the remainder of the day biking and walking through town.  Dozens of restaurants, bars, galleries and gift shops, provide plenty to explore.  Made it back to Marathon just in time to order a margarita and toast the sunset at the Sunset Grill and Raw Bar-----which became a habit for us through the week.  We followed cocktails with a stone crab dinner back at our place.  What a day!

Discovered Leigh Ann's Coffee Shop for breakfast treats, which Alan enjoyed.  I wasn't able to indulge in most of the items but was always able to find something special.  Canvassed Marathon to find the little hidden niches and wait out the winds.  Discovered Sombrero Beach,  a clean, well-maintained public beach area, a perfect spot for hanging out on a sunny day.   A couple of days later, winds subsided enough to allow an outing on the Marathon Lady Party Boat.  Went for a 1/2 day trip and succeeded in catching about a dozen fish. This provided dinner for a couple of nights plus fish to take home with us. 

By the end of the week, winds died down enough for us to take out the kayaks. Unfortunately, the winds had blown sea grasses into the channel preventing the boat from going out without clogging up the engine.  We were able to paddled over the top of the grasses out to a bird sanctuary, where we hung out offshore watching the numerous species on the little mangrove island---peaceful, in spite of the chorus of bird calls.  Had a great week and looking forward to going back again in May.

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