Local Weather Conditions
MarshBunny Notes
The St. Johns River The Intracoastal and Beyond
The Weather Station

Usually a day on the river is hot and sunny, but of course, in Florida, a rainshower or thunderstorm can come up very quickly - and no telling how long it will last! A storm on the river is a beautiful thing, but the lightning can be deadly and you want to choose your viewpoint carefully ...if you can.

The Weather StationOne day Judy and I were suprised to see a construction project going on. At the old railway trestle at the opening to Mosquito Island some men were building a cabin. When asked, they said they were with the St. Johns River Water Management, and it was to be a "Weather Station".

My first thought was that someone would sit out there and watch the weather (ok, tell me there aren't stupid government jobs like that!), but they explained that it was to be an emergency shelter for boaters caught out in inclement weather.

I had wanted to apply for that weather watcher job, but a shelter is good, too.


Racing a storm across Little Sawgrass
Crossing Little Sawgrass to Beat the Rain to the Shelter

Many times Judy and I have taken shelter underneath a plastic tarp to wait out a storm. It's not very comfortable, but getting rained on isn't the worst part - it's the lightning. A plastic tarp seems very thin during a thunder storm! If we can, we get to Mosquito Island to set up our shelter, but in a pinch we pull up under the myrtle and willow trees along the edge. As I am sure you understand, these are not first-class accommodations. Rain blows in around the tarp (along with a good bit of sand if you made it to the island), and you find that mosquitoes and ants like to take shelter from the storm, too. And, have I mentioned the lightning?


Old railroad trestles

The Weather Station is finished now, and is very cozy. The cabin is built better than some places I have lived in, and the lightning rods are a nice touch.

The station was built on the surviving pilings of the old Union Cypress railway trestle. In the marsh everything is used until it completely rejoins the elements!

Trestles crossing the river
The old Union Cypress Railway line where it crosses the river.

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