Gulf Islands National Seashore, Okaloosa Area, Fort Walton Beach, FL, 3/1/12

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Jolly Roger Travel Park:
Getting Aquainted

My youngest brother Gary and his wife Mary are full-timers who are work-camping at The Jolly Roger Travel Park in the Florida Keys.   They generously invite me to join them, where ever they might be at for the season.  So, I decided to take them up on their offer during this trip.

The Jolly Roger Travel Park is about half-way down
the Keys to Key West.  3/4/14
This is a nice RV park, mostly populated by rigs that are 30-40+' long -- primarily class A's and 5th Wheels.  Although, a few C's, B's, and tent trailers are here too; and up to 5 tent sites at any one time.  Campgrounds and RV parks in the Keys are some of the most expensive in the Lower 48.  So, this is a destination for wealthy retired folks.  And many of these RVers return year after year.  During the winter months, the park is at full capacity.

RV spaces are fairly close to each other,
but the park has maintained lots of large
trees, palms and grassy areas.   3/4/14
Unfortunately, I'm not allowed to sleep in my Prius here.  But, I got a heck of a deal on an efficiency apartment at a rate that is comparable to tent sites at the local state parks.  (Thank you Jolly Roger management, and Gary & Mary for hooking me up!) 

View of a sunset from my 2nd floor efficiency apartment.
Looking above the RVs, I have a peek-a-boo view of the water.  3/1/14
Both guests and staff are very nice here.  Everyone is easy going.  And the staff work exceedingly hard to please.  The place has -- a dock, a little harbor, a swimming/snorkeling area, fishing areas and cleaning station, an open-air pavilion next to the water (w/electrical outlets), restrooms with nice showers, a pool, a laundry room, free wifi and satellite TV, accessible facilities, along with potlucks & activities sponsored by both guests and staff.

Pelicans are plentiful here.  Along with a few egrets,
they beg for scraps as fishermen clean their catch.  3/1/14

Using the pelicans as my models, let me show you around the waterfront area of Jolly Roger Travel Park. 

This is one of the slips of the dock.  A sailboat is moored just off shore.  3/1/14

Looking northeast toward the dock and the Gull of Mexico beyond.  3/1/14

Looking southeast from the dock toward the RV Park.  3/1/14

Looking from the dock toward the eastern side of the
open-air pavilion.  3/1/14

The swimming and snorkeling area, just east of the dock.  3/1/14

Why did the ibis cross the road?
Taken just outside of Gary & Mary's 5th Wheel.  3/2/14
Last night I went out on the dock while Gary fished for sharks (catch & release).  Three times a shark took the bait, and three times he lost it either to a broken leader or becoming unhooked.  He had just upgraded to 100 lb test line.  All the same it was exciting to hear the zing of the reel while the shark ran with the bait.  The last one even jumped out of the water.

Also, I loved just watching the sharks.   The water was clear and calm and we could see them using a flash light.  Some thought they were nurse sharks, others thought they were bull sharks.   One was 6-7' long with several remora suctioned to it.  We could also see crab (one in a conch shell), lobster, sting ray, and other small fish.  It was a fun time while several park guests joined us, offering suggestions and more bait ... ooooh'ing and aaaaah'ing at the predators below.

Getting ready to fish for shark at sunset.  3/3/14

The last of the colors of sunset with a sliver of the moon
in the upper right, and its reflection in the lower right.
3/3/14
Gary is sitting here with me now and says he's going to catch one tonight for sure!  He's borrowing a larger pole, with heavier line and leader.  And the bait will be nice and "ripe;" so it'll smell especially appetizing to the sharks.  Hold your nose and stay tuned.

4 comments:

  1. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. Love the moon shot.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Charlene. We've got some kayakers here too. You'd fit right in :)

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  2. Fantastic photos...it's almost like we're there...thanks again for your blog, wish I could be so disciplined.

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    Replies
    1. I love being here with you guys -- fun times and great memories!

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