It was a lovely fall day, so I loaded my tackle in the back of the
pickup and drove up US 90 to Lake Miccosukee for an afternoon of
fishing. It's a really pretty drive; many decades ago, some guy
took it upon himself to plant crepe myrtles along both sides of the
highway all the way from Tallahassee to Monticello. One time some
nimrod from the Department of Transportation chopped some of them down
because they were on the right-of-way, and by the time the community
got through with him he probably had a job scrubbing toilets
somewhere. DOT had to pay to plant new crepe myrtles before the
locals would get off their backs.
Crepe myrtles are typically in bloom from May through September. My fishing trip was in early November, so they just looked like sticks, but I still thought it was a pretty drive.
There's only one good place to park at the lake, and it's near the boat ramp. I had to be careful where I parked because people may be trying to back their boats into the water while I'm off fishing, and if my truck is in their way they'll be mad. But there's plenty of space to park; there's no need to be greedy and crowd the boaters.
I gathered all my fishing gear and walked out onto the boardwalk. There were chameleons everywhere, and they seemed a bit confused about what color they should be. Tan would be a good choice to blend in with the wood the boardwalk is made of, but some of these guys were bright green. I guess they had been sitting on a green plant just a minute before and hadn't had a chance to reset the camo yet.
I followed the boardwalk all the way out onto the dam. The nice guys who made the boardwalk even provided nifty little swivelling seats and angled railings ideally suited for leaning your poles against while wetting a line. Just about the only thing that disturbs the peace and tranquility of a fine fishing afternoon is the occasional city slicker zipping past at 80 mph in a BMW. He must be in a hurry to get somewhere.
While I was waiting for the fish to bite, I looked around at all there was to see here. Just below the dam -- which was just below my feet, because the boardwalk is on top of the dam -- there were several turtles sunning themselves on the rocks or floating among the water hyacinths. I even spotted a couple of small alligators; they ducked under the water when I first arrived, but after I sat quietly for a while they surfaced again. They're actually kinda cute when they're small. I didn't see any snakes that day, but I did see an abandoned skin, so you know they're in there somewhere.
As I sat, a snowy egret flew overhead and landed nearby. I wondered whether he was having any better luck than I was. Maybe the alligators had eaten all the fish!
Whatever the reason, it looked like I'd be having hamburgers for dinner. I tried this spot, I tried that spot, the lake side of the dam, the creek side of the dam, nothing. By the time I had worked my way all the way down to the very end of the boardwalk, all I had was one bony little fish, so I just threw him in the bushes there and packed up and went home.
Oh, well. It's true what they say: "A bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work."