2012 Winter Trip Plans

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe are not in Asia, but I figured this site would be a great way to keep you all informed and updated on our travels this winter. We left our humble home in the UP and started driving south on December 7.  After a nice 2 day visit with my “In-loves” in East Lansing we  drove to Sean’s house (Ryne’s brother) in Ashville, NC. After a short but pleasant visit with Sean, his girlfriend Brandi and their dogs Bella and Patti, we drove to Gainsville, FL. We stayed the night at at a couple’s house that we met halfway around the world in Laos! It was fun to catch up with Sleaze Weasel and Ann. They live simply in the wilds like we do. It took us 5 days to reach our destination:  Ryne’s Grandma’s home in Port Charlotte, FL.  We attended a nice memorial service  for Ryne’s Grandpa who passed away the end of October and spent some time with Aunts and Uncles.

Then, we embarked on an epic canoe trip through the heart of the everglades!! We canoed 101 miles in 9 days from Everglades City to Flamingo.  We brought all the food and fresh water (24 gallons) we needed for 9 days. We camped on beaches, chickees (platforms over the water) and ground sites. The bugs were null during the day, but at dusk the no-see-ums showed up and feasted on us. However, high winds and low temperatures (low 46 degrees at night) the last two days resulted in bug-biting relief! We had an amazing time canoeing around the mangrove wetlands and open ocean. We saw sea turtles, dolphins, sharks, manatees and hundreds of birds and alligators.

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Ryne’s Dad picked us up Dec 23 and we headed to the city of Weston. We spent Christmas at Hugh Birch Taylor State Park in Fort Lauderdale. We enjoyed nature walks, lounging in the warm sand and swimming in the beautiful turquoise water.

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After the New Year we plan to travel westward all the way  to Cali. I’ll keep you posted on our adventures. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!