A Nature Walk in Tropical Wauchula, Florida

Updated on November 19, 2019
Don Bobbitt profile image

Don has been an avid traveler and motorhome owner for most of his life and he shares his experiences along with valuable tips for RV owners.

Wauchula Nature Trail

One of the Nature Trails near the Thousand Trails campground in Wauchula Florida
One of the Nature Trails near the Thousand Trails campground in Wauchula Florida | Source

A Walk on Thanksgiving Day

As Thanksgiving, approached we found ourselves staying at the Thousand Trails Peace River Campground, just south of the little town of Wauchula, FL.

It was a typical November in South Florida; a little rainy and windy for a day or two, followed by four or five days of great tropical weather. Overall, you can count on winter weather in Florida being mild.

By around 1:00PM, we had finished eating our Thanksgiving meal, cleaned up the kitchen, slipped in a short nap, and were ready to take a walk on one of the wonderful nature trails, here at the campground.

This wasn't going to be a "hike"; but rather a nice slow trail walk through the local tropical shrubbery, strange plants, wildflowers and such. We spent several hours on that first walk, with my wife and I swapping the camera back and forth.

The Peace River actually borders the campground on two sides and provides campers with decent fishing and great legal fossil hunting.
The Peace River actually borders the campground on two sides and provides campers with decent fishing and great legal fossil hunting. | Source

A View of the Peace River

The Peace River winds around two sides of the Thousand Trails campground, and provides a beautiful backdrop for a lot of great pictures.

It seems that the Peace River is also a great source of fossils and is very popular for the great and free finds that seem to be everywhere in and along the river.

Supposedly, if you stick a shovel into a bank or sandbar and sift the residue, you will almost certainly find at least one shark's tooth, or a piece of bone, or other fossilized items.

Native Palm Trees Abound

Being in Florida, we found native palms all along the nature path.
Being in Florida, we found native palms all along the nature path. | Source
A good example of the local tropical shrubbery.
A good example of the local tropical shrubbery. | Source

Warning Signs

We found these warning signs along the trail near the Peace River's banks.
We found these warning signs along the trail near the Peace River's banks. | Source

Of, course what is a nature trail without appropriate warnings about the hidden dangers that might be present? We are used to looking out for such signs when we travel to any area of the country.

These two signs, although common to Florida, aren't seen together like this very often.

A young alligator sunning itself. Gators are everywhere in Florida and they are a common sight as they leave the water to sun themselves.
A young alligator sunning itself. Gators are everywhere in Florida and they are a common sight as they leave the water to sun themselves. | Source

Butterfly

White Peacock Butterfly, native to Hardee County, Florida
White Peacock Butterfly, native to Hardee County, Florida | Source

There were hundreds of butterflies fluttering all over the place. This specific one was the most abundant on that day, and is known as the White Peacock Butterfly.

What a beautiful and active entertainer!

Native Wildflowers

False Foxglove WildFlower
False Foxglove WildFlower | Source

Butterflies, Bees, and Wildflowers

Nature in action!

I caught this shot with both bees and butterflies feeding themselves on the wildflower blossoms.

Biden's Spanish Needle
Biden's Spanish Needle | Source

A Wildflower and a LadyBug

Wildflowers abound along the trail
Wildflowers abound along the trail | Source
Ladybug?
Ladybug? | Source

The wildflower.

It was just hanging there in the blazing sun.

Standing out from the surrounding vegetation, and begging for its picture to be taken.

While, right next to the wildflower, a ladybug was doing its best.

I show both pictures here, just for the color contrast.

Peace River Looking Upstream

The Peace River looking upstream from the campground.
The Peace River looking upstream from the campground. | Source

Nature Surrounds You

In Wauchula there are several nature trails and we took advantage of all of them multiple times.

Each time we walked these trails we saw different samplings of the native wildlife living in and on the local plants.

An osprey, a bird of prey that lives on fish.
An osprey, a bird of prey that lives on fish. | Source

We Stayed for Three Weeks at the Peace River Campground

We stayed there for the Thanksgiving holiday and for a total of three weeks before we moved on to our next adventure.

There isn't a lot to do in Wauchula itself, but we had a great time alternating between; swimming in the pool, looking for fossils in the river, and exploring the local area.

We have been back to this quiet campground in the middle of Florida several times and we will be back again. It is a great place to just relax, unwind, and enjoy the natural Florida.

Thousand Trails Campground on the Peace River

A Great Book on the Peace River

Florida's Peace River Frontier
Florida's Peace River Frontier

When I travel in my RV, I often purchase books on the local area. I found this one in the local drugstore and it has provided me with some great sightseeing ideas whenever we have camped near Wauchula Florida.

 

Great Hiking Shoes

Salomon Men's Eskape Aero Hiking Shoe
Salomon Men's Eskape Aero Hiking Shoe

I had on my walking shoes as we traveled the nature trail. I have a wide foot and these particular shoes are really comfortable for me and breathe well.

 

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Questions & Answers

    © 2009 Don Bobbitt

    Comments

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      • Don Bobbitt profile imageAUTHOR

        Don Bobbitt 

        7 years ago from Ruskin Florida

        Jack (Fortunexreator), thanks for the correction. I am at this moment changing the Hub to reflect your observation that the bird is indeed an Osprey (bird of prey).

        At the time that I took the picture, i had searched the web for images of "Florida Birds" and nothing came up that resembled my pic other than a distant picture of an immature Red Tail Hawk. So, eventually, I gave up and knowing that I was in the area at the time that Red Tails were most abundant in Central Florida,I took a shot that I was right.

        It is good to be corrected and have the right data out there for others.

      • profile image

        Jack 

        7 years ago

        hi don, i was just searching google for pictures of an immature cooper's hawk to compare a shot that i had taken on january first this year. yours popped up. i hate to nit pick, or belittle your ID skills, but the bird in the photo is an osprey, judging by the patterning on the breast a possible female. a miss ID in the field is real bumber in the birding world, and if im not 100% positive of an id, i document the observation as an unidentified accipiter, dabbler, buteo, or whatever family the bird belongs to. i do like your photos, and knowing that you are a nikon shooter makes you alright in my book!!!! ill probly keep checking back, i love nature sites! check mine out at birdingpa.blogspot.com.

        best,

        Jack

      • fortunecreator profile image

        fortunecreator 

        8 years ago from Internet

        Great pics of Wauchula - definitely a nice place to visit in Florida.

      • Don Bobbitt profile imageAUTHOR

        Don Bobbitt 

        9 years ago from Ruskin Florida

        Thanks, John and a Camera! Yeah, I have a small library of OK shots, but I really need to step up my lens. I use a Nikon, and my "go everywhere" lens is a 28-200. I have a 300-zoom, but it is never on my camera when that great shot is staring at me. Oh Well! I love your shots though. Cudo's to you!

      • John and a camera profile image

        John and a camera 

        9 years ago from Co. Leitrim Southern Ireland

        Nice hub Don. Would love to see some more bird pictures on here. Keep up the good work.

      • nikki1 profile image

        nikki1 

        10 years ago

        great hub/pic.s

      • profile image

        shelbyK 

        10 years ago

        Just took a peak and see some good changes. I'm going to bed now. Broke my little toe on left foot Wed. during night - mad dash to the bathroom, what else at 4:30 in the morning?!. Tired of dragging that foot around. Tell you about it later. Sure do some stupid things when getting older! ss

      • profile image

        shelbyK 

        10 years ago

        Don - Do you know that travel writing is a good way to make extra dough - whether you really need it or not? Each year I buy the "Best Travel Writing of the Year." Good travel writing can take the rocking-chair reader back home in Maine,while you are luxuriating in sunny Florida, right there with you, BUT . . . you have got to be able to identify what you are talking about. Get yourself a book on the flora and fauna of whatever part of Florida you are in at the time of your writing (probably close to being the same all over Fla.) and don't just show a picture and say butterfly, wildflower, etc. You need to name the "thing". I can promise you your readership will jump when you start identifying what you are seeing, experiencing. For example: Instead of saying "Wildflowers"you can then say, "Wildflower - native of the Wauchula area of south Florida, called the Lady Slipper, first discovered in 1792 by the botanist, John Foster, himself a native of one of the coldest climates on earth, Siberia." Now, THAT IS INTERESTING! and will grab and hold your readers attention and make them want more of YOUR travel/nature writing. Remember - Ya' gotta' know it before you can talk about it with any authority and convince others.

        As for this hub? - good, like all your others. You got it working, and I'm not saying you need to make something enjoyable become an arduous task each time you put a piece out here, but I bet even you, the writer, would like to know more about that pretty little pink "wildflower" you wrote about this time. Now . . . moving right along in our workship this morning - the word is BLOSSOM not BLOSSUM.

        I promise you it makes a difference. Another thing: get yourself a good dictionary and a thesaurus. They are invaluable to any writer. I could not write one complete paragraph without both of these tools. As I have said before, you are on a roll - seeing good stuff and sharing it with pictures and words. The camera doesn't lie. Make your words ring with truth and knowledge also.

        Now - you may be wondering - "why did ole'cuz - the English major - have to get into the teacher mode this morning, and in my public place?" Well, because I want everyone else who reads you to know what I know - that you have tremendous ability to tell a story, the right heart for the job, but that with all new writers, myself included in yonder days - sometimes we need a tad of prodding to reach a bit further and make the difference between - "O.K. another Don Bobbitt hub" to HOLD ON A MINUTE, GOTTA' READ THIS NEW HUB BY BOBBITT!

        (you can thank me later, and you will (tee-hee)

        My love to you, dear one.

        shelby

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