The park was holding a coffee and donut social this morning in the rec. room. We didn't want to be unsocial, so we took advantage of it and met a very nice couple who told us about some interesting places to visit in our travels.
We planned to visit some old family friends in Crestview, Fl. about an hour drive away. We took Joyce's car and enjoyed the nice quiet ride of the new tires. We took a detour to Blackwater River State Park.
Deaton Bridge Road cuts through the park which has picnic/ parking areas on both sides of the Blackwater River. These are manned by 'iron rangers' that visitors use to pay the entrance fee of $4.
We parked in one of the parking/ picnic areas and took pictures of the river which was not dissimilar to the Suwannee River with some notable exceptions.
Blackwater River has an average depth of 2.5 ft. The banks of the river are shallow and flat in contrast to the steep banks of the Suwannee River.
Blackwater River is billed as "One of the purest sand bottom rivers in the world". It's designated a Florida Canoe Trail.
We passed the ranger station and gates in route to the camping area. The ranger station was unoccupied with a permanent sign indicating the office hours from 3-5 p.m. Another sign advised campers to find their reserved site and check back at the ranger station between 3-5 p.m. I thought it was an unusual protocol. Situated among longleaf pines are two campground loops with 30 campsites that offer water and electric. There is a single bathhouse building for both loops. There is of course a dump station near the entrance on the exit side of the road.
We took a look at the campground which was neat and tidy. There were only a handful of RVs with many open sites. The majority of the sites were filled with the small gravel, the same as the gravel on the sites at Grayton Beach. These sites are available for $18 a night.
The park itself was small and some of the trails were flooded. We had considered staying at this park, but had decided against it as we thought it would be similar to Big Shoals with forests and a river. We were looking for something different.
I think we made the right decision for us by going to Avalon Landing RV Park as it's much closer to our daughter and son in law. If the weather had been better, I think Blackwater River State Park would be great for canoeing/ kayaking.
On the way out of the park on Deaton Bridge Road, we came across a training field, part of Whiting Naval Station.
Helicopter trainers were doing maneuvers. We stopped to watch and took some photos.
Our son in law Andrew will be participating in this type of training in the near future.
In the afternoon, we visited our friends Bob and Janette in Crestview and were glad to see that they are doing well.
We got home by 5:00 and made plans to do some more exploring tomorrow.