A lot of people say Florida hadn’t a lot of elevation or culture. One experience Florida had consistently delivered in 2013, moments in the sun.
This past weekend, I had the opportunity to ride out to the north side of Canaveral National Seashore by way of New Smyrna. Traveling a few times this summer to the south side of the park in Titusville, I had wanted a fresh perspective, literally and figuratively. The drive down 46 A to New Smyrna had gone by a lot quicker by at least an hour. The shoreline view had definitely been a show case of residential living down State Road A1A. Arriving to pay admission at this federal park, the park ranger had asked “What had you come here for?” I had thought,” Sand, surf and the waning warmer weather.” With this week’s pending US government shutdown, national parks had hit the list for early casualties of a looming political fiasco.
Proceeding down the road, thick scrub brush had dominated to the left and to the right. Down a few miles on the right, the bay had lapped the inner shore quieting with some folks casting rods for fishing. On the left, the scrub brush had given way to turbulent waves coming ashore. Unfamiliar with the number of parking areas, I had stopped in at Site 4 and Site 5. Luckily, before wasting any more day, I had found an empty spot at Site 5. Underwater, the visibility had been almost zero due to the rough surf. The current had been strong, moving southward. Periodically, I had adjusted location by swimming or walking northbound. For reference, I had trended water a few times unexpectedly. An old lady had lost her swimming goggles during her venture into the water. The rough seas had reminded me of the well-known riptide and sharks past the whitecaps. New Smyrna for reference had made itself the shark attack capital of world over the years. Now of course, I had liked to think my leg or toes tastier than the next. The reality, these waters had been great for fishing as well. Seeing those fisherman, I had steered clear as best possible for cohabitation. Figuring I had not wanted to confuse any shark with man bait. As far as shark attacks this year, New Smyrna had experienced the first pair on Saturday, September 28th.
For those that had been interested in checking out the north side of Canaveral Seashore National Park, call ahead (386) 428-3384. Address: 7600 S Atlantic Ave, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32169.
New Smyrna Beach has first official shark bite of the year (SharkYearMagazine)
10 Most Dangerous Places for Shark Attacks (Discovery)
Canaveral National Seashore (U.S. National Park Service)