Ramblings of a Tampa engineer
Snead Island

Every so often I visit a park and what I'm looking for is no people around so I can capture a shot of the path/trail you walk. I realized after a few years that I haven't really done anything with these Android quality photos, so I've collected them all.

Something about the human produced pathway in between encroaching nature is just a perfect photo to take in my eyes.

Weedon Island is located on the far north-east side of St. Petersburg and is an enormous park. The trails range from complete dirt extremely wide trails to regular boardwalk style paths. A cool free admission park that comes in around 3,200 acres large.

Brooker Creek is a far more rural park also free clocking in around 8,700 acres of preserves. These trails depending on how far you go decay further and further into what nature wants. In the summer months this park is brutal with immense amounts of mosquitos and lack of shade when you hit the Blackwater Cutoff. For most visitors they will stay on the Ed Center Trail which is mostly a boardwalk.

In the heart of Indian Rocks Beach lies the Indian Rocks Beach Nature Preserve which has a playground, but also a really elegant boardwalk that intertwines around the mangroves. You'll encounter plenty of birds and have a great view of the ocean/beach - the park is free to visit, but chances are the few parking spots will be taken. You might end up paying a price to park in the highly condense/busy area.

An enormous park that I've blogged about specifically before. This park has a variety of trails that circle around Lake Rogers itself. You'll pay $2 (or have a park pass) on a honor system to visit this park. The payment makes sense when you realize there are water stations around the park that are kept filled, cool and full of temporary cups. This park like others ranges between plowed and just a mowed chunk of nature.

This isn't even a park, but it felt out of place when I lived in Citrus Park. Here is this little elegant boardwalk as a bridge over a river. I ended up blogging about this bridge/trail as I found tons of shopping carts just dumped in the river alongside it. How I found this trail was pretty funny - I was drinking at the local Ballyhoo's Grill and walked home intoxicated. I thought there had to be a shortcut and went exploring - sure enough found this little trail that went to the Publix which was basically next to my apartment.

The riverwalk in Bradenton is much like any other with an elegant boardwalk that sits on the river and many miles in length. You can take this path from the skate parks all the way to the fancy restaurants on the pier. When it cuts under the highway it creates this shot you see above where the trail has a very short ceiling. Anytime I find myself in Bradenton I like to walk this trail for the Ingress benefit.

John B. Sargeant is another $2 entry park that boasts a boardwalk that surrounds a swamp normally supporting a gator or two. The parking lot is the coolest one I've ever seen though having the lattice like concrete structure. The park is quite small though for someone just walking around - it really shines if you are using a picnic table or going onto the water.

Prior to attending my sisters graduation it was time to explore the city and I stumbled upon this little trail. It wasn't relaxing by any stretch - after probably a solid 1000ft downhill I realized I had to turn around and go right back up the large elevation I had just declined. Either way the historic aspect was sweet - stumbled upon something called "The Ruins" which was the first modern sewage treatment system designed in the early 1900s.

On that same trip I stumbled upon an Ingress portal on top of a mountain that was being used by the enemy for a large field. Seeing how I was in the area with a rental car I took off on a little journey to visit this. I arrived quite late in the day to someone saying it would close before I could get back down. Thankfully I said I would move quick and that was good enough to let me climb said trail. Made it to the top, took some photos and played Ingress and booked it back down.

This park I found by accident exploring a trail full of Ingress portals - as you walk around this business park on a trail you end up at a recreation center. That center and park is the start point of a trail that curls all the way around to an electrical substation. So I'm not quite sure of the purpose of this trail - its only a few miles and runs into a highly gated and monitored electrical structure. Either way - the boardwalk is wide and keeps the nature at bay.

One day my regular park I workout at was closed instead giving out sandbags at the entrance for an upcoming hurricane. That storm was days out and I still wanted to workout so I went up the road and ran into this park. This park was basically a natural environment with a few intersecting trails. Each trail hits a point where you have like 6 different directions to go which can lead to some immense confusion. First time at a park I felt lost, but I just opened Google Maps and redirected myself back towards my car.

This is another free park in the tiny bit of land that separates St. Petersburg from Bradenton. This is a more historical park heavy with trails that tells the story about the mound civilizations that lived there. Brutal when hot as only a small chunk of these trails are within the cover of trees. A great park though that had water, hiking, observation towers and much more.

All in all - a few years of visiting parks and trails.

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