Braving the Swamp with Cat-Like Reflexes


Today was a recreation day, and it was amazing. First we went on a canoe trip on the Black Water River in Collier Seminole State Park. We learned a lot about the different mangroves and the Natives that used to live here. I know I’ve said this before, but I feel like I can’t say it enough, the history here is very rich.

After the canoe trip we went on a swamp walk with a Park Ranger named Lisa, who was great and very informative. Now when I say swamp walk I mean swamp walk, we were knee deep. Due to my fear of snakes I was a little hesitant but after two minutes of being in there I forgot all about my phobia. It was so beautiful! We saw so many different kinds of plants and we learned a little bit about the soils and animals from that part of the swamp. The ground was very unstable. When our videographer slipped, I quickly grabbed her by the backpack so she didn’t fall in. I bet she’s glad I have cat-like reflexes.

When we got back we had a special dinner guest waiting for us, the Deputy Superintendant J.D. Lee. He picked a good night to visit because Elliot the Magnificent made Jambalaya and it was superb. Before dinner he spoke to us about the National Park Service and how we could get involved. I really enjoyed this because after this trip I’m seriously considering a career with NPS. He also asked what we thought would make the NPS more relevant and appealing to young people. This was pretty cool because he’s a really important guy around here, and I felt like he was actually listening to what we had to say.