Tag Archives: Alafia River State Park

~A walk through the spirit of a day

Alafia River State Park
January 26, 2016
A walk through the spirit of a day,
The path before us leads the way,
The breeze blows, tree canopies sway,
Sunbeams don’t reach the ground, the skies are gray,
Little eyes peer out of the bay,
On a log, in the water they play,
Heard the nine notes, the elusive owl looks for prey,
She will show herself we say,
It truly was delightful, yea.
Nature has a heart.
Nature has a heart.
“Is he smiling?”
Gnatcatcher, Blue-grey


What ya see Larry?
“What ya see Larry?”
“I’am watching you.”

Thanks for a good time!

~Alafia River State Park

Alafia River State Park, Lithia, Florida

We are currently in Alafia River State Park. Our friends Karla and Larry are camping here with us for a few days, and we are very glad they are here.

Since Wednesday we managed to get in a few walks and one neat hike. If you like to bike and/or ride horses, Alafia River is the place to come. Check out this beautiful Florida State Park here: Alafia River.

Here are a few photos of our site and the campground. We have four Live Oak trees on our site.

The girls are enjoying it here.

Skye River
A trail
A pond
Karla, Larry and Howard
Karla, Larry and Howard. Check out this bike trail.This park is known for its elaborate bike trails.

This park is pastoral and peaceful, and filled with live oak trees. The birds love these Live Oak trees. We have spotted several Osprey, one Bald Eagle and seventeen other species so far. Here is a beautiful Green Heron and a Killdeer.

A little fall color in winter. Alafia River State Park
A little fall color in winter. Alafia River State Park

More later…

~A Partnership~

Big Bend Power Station, Tampa Bay
Big Bend Power Station, Tampa Bay

Recently our friends took us to visit the Big Bend Power Station with the hope of seeing Manatee. We were all camped at Alafia River State Park in Lithia, Florida, which isn’t too far from the Big Bend Power Station.

Big Bend Power Station is location on Tampa Bay near Apollo Beach and covers more than 1,500 acres. This power station has four coal-fired units with a combined output of more than 1,700 megawatts and meets strict environmental regulations through the use of flue gas desulfurization systems or “scrubbers”, which remove sulfur dioxide produced when coal is burned. (some info taken from the web-sites mentioned here)

You can read about Big Bend Power Station here: http://www.tampaelectric.com/company/mvc/index.cfm?link=banner&source=hp&q=tampa+electric

Manatee enjoying the warm canal water

Beginning around 1986 people started seeing Manatee, in large numbers, in the power station’s discharge canal, where saltwater – taken from Tampa Bay to cool Unit 4 – flowed, clean and warm, back to the bay. When Tampa Bay reached 68 degrees or colder, the mammals would seek out this new refuge.

 The Manatee Viewing Center was soon born. Today, Big Bend’s discharge canal is a state and federally designated Manatee sanctuary that provides critical protection from the cold for these unique, gentle animals.

You can read about the Manatee Viewing Center (MCV) here: http://www.tampaelectric.com/company/mvc/index.cfm?link=banner&source=hp&q=tampa+electric

Because it was cloudy we didn’t get the best view of these Manatee, but we had a fun time anyway!


An Artsy view

It was very exciting for me to witness the results of a partnership, between the Tampa Electric Company and others, and the need to protect the wildlife that visits this area, especially the Manatee. 

I believe they are doing an outstanding job in meeting the power needs of people working and living in and around Tampa, while providing a safe environment for these mammals during the winter months.

Hundreds of Manatee take refuge from the cold at this sanctuary.


Located on site at the Manatee Viewing Center, is an environmental education building that provides a place to learn about the Manatee and also about how power is generated.

"Why don't you come on over for a visit?"
“Why don’t you come on over for a visit?”