Sunday, June 8, 2008

Little Talbot Island

Little Talbot Island is a lovely little park along A1A just northeast of Jacksonville. We went along to hike the trail (somewhere between 3 and 4 miles) that takes you on a trek through forest and then out onto the beach for the last third of the loop.


The trail was lovely but, despite the many warnings of nefarious creatures lurking in the shadows, we didn't encounter much wildlife. A little black racer snake greeted us in the parking lot but all we saw on the trail of note was a gigantic golden silk orb weaver (banana spider) eating an even bigger moth, a couple squirrels, some skinks, a tortoise, and mosquitos... lots of mosquitos. I typically don't get targeted by those little blood sucking demons (fleas are another story, apparently my ankles are delicious) but this time they were all over me, literally. The tortoise was incredible, it just stayed there while we took some photos and then decided to make a run for it. The run only lasted a few feet which allowed for more photos until the fear set in again and we had to move another few feet along the dunes.

Gopherus polyphemus

There are a few dead trees on the beach like you might find at this park's sibling, Big Talbot Island, but they're nowhere near as grand. Regardless, the beach is beautiful, clean, and covered in crab holes. I was hoping one would pop up for a photo opportunity but I think the noon sun was a bit too harsh for the little crustaceans. I saw one little fellow but he scrambled off before I could even remove my lens cap.

beached tree

For $4 you can get car with up to eight people into this lovely little nature preserve, particularly nice if you're looking for a relatively deserted beach to spend a quiet afternoon.

Little Talbot Island State Park
12157 Heckscher Drive
Jacksonville, Florida 32226

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