Gainesville Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
I have to admit, while I was attending UF I did fall in love with Gainesville. Forget the crap about the cost of living being cheaper then in South Florida, cause its not. And if you can get over the notion of Gainesville being a small city thinking its a big city, you're fine. But the campus and the surrounding areas are awesome. There are only so many things you can do in a college town...study, party, attend games, find cheap foods, and explore.
And only a couple miles south of campus is Paynes Praire Preserve. Depending on the year, this place can be pretty awesome to walk around in. During the 1800s, this place was flooded and steam boats use to routinely travel up and down it.
Part of the preserve is the La Chua Trail. This trail ends at an observation tower that lets you over look the wetlands. Its only a couple of miles long and very easy to walk. If the area is super flooded then you can only walk about a hundred yards pass the start of the trail. In which case, all you'll get to see is the Alachua Sink. Which is a big sink hole that has filled with water.
On the other end of the preserve is the Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail.
But one of the best times to see the area during alligator mating season. Or worse depending on how bad you are at walking in the woods with hundreds of gators around you. You'll hear little chirping/clicking sounds from everywhere. And you might even see some baby gators. But be warned, its the mommy gators that you need to keep an eye out for. Especially when the trail is overgrown. I made the mistake of looking at some baby gators, then stepping over some weeds only to see a big mommy gator not even four feet away. Talking about scaring the crap out of Maureen...I've seen her move so fast. Trust me, you have to be careful.
So enjoy the photos. Its a mixture of eveything (some I took, others I didn't)...the trail paved and unpaved, the La Chua Trail, both dry and wet seasons, and lots of gators.