Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Blue Spring Campground

ReserveAmerica is the corporation that now handles many of the state and federal reservations for campgrounds.  It costs 10 dollars for each reservation.  For people who camp 14 days at the same spot it is a fine way to get a wanted campsite.  For folk like us, it makes life more expensive or more difficult.  Blue Spring Campground is the perfect example.    I wasn't sure when we would arrive and didn't want to waste the campground fee ($27.00) for a day we might not be arriving.  So when I looked last week at ReserveAmerica and Blue Spring had lots of empty sites we decided not to make a reservation. 

When it became obvious that we could make it to Blue Spring but after the park closed, I called the office and was basically told that if we couldn't make it by 5:30, the office was closed and we couldn't get in.  So we stayed at Faver Dykes and drove to Blue Spring the next day.  When we arrived around 10 AM (with the idea of taking the Mac off to a genius), the gal in the office said they only had three sites we could stay on.  We took one of the three.  All three where small and close to another site.  After we came back from the Apple store, we walked to see the Manatees.  On the way we both noticed that many very nice sites were open.  Of course, our very close neighbors burned garbage and had a fire all night which meant I was stuck inside with the air conditioning going so I could breath.  I checked ReserveAmerica and over half the sites were vacant but only three open sites were for "walk-ins".  If you don't pay ReserveAmerica, you can't get the good sites.  This policy might very well determine how much we use Florida State Parks.  But other than the lousy private reservation system this is a fun place to camp.
Today is Lew's Birthday!   First thing in the morning is a walk to see the Manatees.Blue Spring is a natural spring that is 72 degrees warm.  Manatees like that and are protected.  Makes a nice mile roundtrip walk to see them in the morning.

 Lew's birthday lunch at Five Guys.
Then a leisurely afternoon bike ride on a rails to trails that is directly across from the campground.  Today we biked six miles.
Its a lovely paved trail that is 3.5 miles long.  We ended the day with another walk to see Manatees.  Hope that helps us not gain weight with all those fries!

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