Pup Walk – Lighthouse Point Park

View from the other side

View from the other side

The pups and I actually started out for another park – it’s still hot here, with temperatures hovering at slightly below 90 degrees and that park promised shady trails – but that one also required toll roads and an entrance fee and even though it wasn’t a lot, I am saving up for a couch. We also got a mid-afternoon start – I did chores and grocery shopping first – that’ll teach me.

Beach view

Beach view

I wanted a new trail, a new park. My GPS “lost the signal” and I realized I knew how to get to the lighthouse from memory, so there we went – at which point my GPS kicked back in with the new route, so she must have wanted to go to the beach too.

Two trips ago I bought a season pass to Smyrna Dunes Park and it turns out that it has a sister park, Lighthouse Point Park across Ponce Inlet and near the lighthouse (though the Lighthouse itself is not actually in the park). Since that one was pre-paid, new to us, and dog-friendly, it fit the bill.

The weather, as always in Florida in summer (yes, I know it’s officially fall, but fall is slow to arrive in Florida), is iffy, particularly on a hot late afternoon, which this was. Mornings feel like fall with temperatures in the 70’s, but by mid-afternoon we’re back to the high 80’s and threat of rain.

Around the bend an egret was wading too

Around the bend an egret was wading too

This was a good pick. At Smyrna Dunes, it’s a long way down a hot trail to get to the beach we like. At Lighthouse Point, the parking lot is just steps away from the beach. Hurrah! The beach itself, however, isn’t nearly as nice. We explored the south side (as much as we could before the rain hit) and it didn’t take very long. There is much left to explore – a nature trail, a boardwalk, so we’ll be back.

Wear shoes

Wear shoes

Oddly enough, that beach is rocky (rocks? in Florida?) so don’t go barefoot. The water isn’t clear as it is on the other side and the beach drops off quickly – Gizmo took two steps and he was swimming.

Lighthouse on the Rocks

Lighthouse on the Rocks

This is how quickly the weather can change.

The weather changes quickly here

The weather changes quickly here

Time to go

Time to go

We started back to the car and within three minutes we were in a downpour. Just about the time I got the car unlocked, the dogs loaded in, and the engine started, the weather changed back, just in time for me to meet the turtle.

On the way back I wanted to get a close up shot of the lighthouse (as it turned out, the closer I got to the lighthouse, the less of it I could see) but had a close encounter with a turtle out for its late afternoon stroll. It was kind enough to pause for a photo session and seemed to enjoy it. A scruffy-looking fisherman passed by as I was headed back to the car.

Why did the turtle cross the road?

Why did the turtle cross the road?

Fisherman: Do you know why the turtle crossed the road?
Me: No. Why?
Fisherman: To get to the Shell station.

I wish I had taken a picture of him. He was a character.

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