Boating on Biscayne Bay
Miami Travel Blog› entry 31 of 59 › view all entries
KABOOM! A huge clap of thunder woke me at 5:30 AM ... not again! All I could think of is: would wbe able to take our boat tour this morning? The lightning flashed for another 30 minutes or so, the rain poured and the thunder eventually tapered off into the distance. The storm moved on and the day dawned cloudy, but with little outlook of rain.
We left the house at 7:30 and joined the commute traffic on the I-95 freeway to the downtown Miami area. The traffic could have been a nightmare, but it was comparatively light for the hour. The drive was, however, quite long - probably 50 miles to our destination.
We arrived at Biscayne National Park in due course, paid only $23 per person (the senior rate) and got ready for our 3-hour tour. The boat looked like the "Minnow" from the old television show, "Gilligan's Island". All we needed were Gilligan himself, the Captain, the movie star, Mary Ann, etc. The boat has a glass bottom, but the panes did not look overly clear. The ranger, a lovely young woman named Astrid, was a bit late, but we took off for our adventure on Biscayne Bay.
The boat has a huge diesel engine and is very loud. Astrid wore ear protection. She is on a loud boat of one sort or another almost every day and must protect her hearing from the loud boat motors. The ride is fast and I really like that. We stopped to see some sponges living on the sea floor. There used to be so much more, but humans (so what else is new?) have destroyed much of the habitat and harvested far too many of the creatures. I frankly did not recognize the sponges and did not find that particularly interesting.
Because the sea was rather choppy, we were unable to go to the coral reef to view the beautiful fish and other sea life. That was disappointing, but instead we went to Boca Chita Key (Spanish for little mouth).
In all of the national parks it is illegal to remove anything, even the smallest pebble, from its correct place.
All too soon it was time to head back to the dock at Park Headquarters. Along the way I saw a little fish skipping along on top of the water. I thought it was a flying fish, but Astrid told me it is called a ballyhoo. Later, Baba spotted another and I, too, caught sight of it. People on the starboard side were lucky enough to spot a large sea turtle under the water. I was standing on the port side. I saw a couple of schools of small fish in the amazingly-clear water as well as a single, large fish. I am not educated enough on the subject to be able to identify the fish.
We returned at 1 PM and I was as hungry as a bear. Unfortunately there was no place to grab a meal. With a gurgling tummy, at least for me, we began the long drive back home. We stopped at a store so that I could purchase some new rechargeable batteries for my camera. My old ones were the originals that came with the camera when it was purchased. They have been holding their charge for only a couple of hours, then needed recharging. It was impossible. Jag wanted to try another kind of battery and was against my buying the new ones. I stood my ground for once.
I ate some of that marvelous corned beef when we got home.
We leave for Disney World tomorrow. We have reached the southern-most portion of our journey. We will now begin to head north and west. We will certainly miss Baba and Pierrette. They have been such welcoming hosts and friends. By the way, I apologize for delaying posting the entries for the last few days. As you have probably realized, I have been pooped out by the go-go-going of our visit to Miami. I will upload photographs tomorrow.