The Kiplinger Nature Preserve is closest to my house so it was the obvious place to start.
While most of my photography friends are out capturing hawks on the wing or lions on an african safari, I captured this fine specimen of pine cone. I actually passed right by it twice but then realized it was not placed there by human intervention. It landed right where I saw it. There were dozens all around. When I got home it was apparent this was the best photo of the day.
Which told me two things. I have a good eye for the mundane, and I have a lot of work to do if I choose to make this some sort of money making venture. Its obvious I have no fear of being only feet away from a Cotton Mouth snake or ferocious, possibly rabid bunny. Actually when I got home I found out this was a common Rat Snake but hey - that mouth does look a little cottony.
I nearly stepped on the rabbit. It didn't even flinch till my second shot then vanished in two hops - you know,,,, Fast - like a bunny.
This trek is about a mile but some of it is on a busy water way and a bit more right next to a massive condo complex. For a few steps you can pretend you are far out in nature but the constant sound of traffic, planes, boats, and people all around do make that a very short illusion.
One of the things you need to pay attention to when out and about in Florida is the weather. I did not have to walk very far to find a nice lightning scar on a pine tree. Heavy downpours and my brand new camera and lens are two things that should not be introduced to each other.
I may not have gotten that Bald Eagle shot I was hoping for but I did get away from my life behind a computer screen. A lot of heat, a few bugs, thunder in the distance to quicken my pace, yet ever so relaxing.
I even had time to get down on the ground and see the wonder of a miniature forest growing on a fallen tree. And time to research how to take a better photo of it next time I am out.
For the rest of the photos from my hike [click here]