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Old 01-27-2011, 07:21 PM   #11
XC Rider OP
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Joined: Dec 2008
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Day 2, leaving Everglades, do Loop road and then back down to Key West.

So here I am all packed up and ready to go.

Snapped a few pictures of some wildlife on my way out.

Saw this little side road and decided to go explore. It supposedly led to Bear Lake.

A little muddy in spots, but nice.

Turns out it eventually dead ends at a canal where you then have to continue either on foot or by canoe to reach Bear Lake.

Ohh well.....more wildlife!

Before exiting the Everglades, I decided to swing by and check out the Nike Hercules missile site. I remember when I came into the park yesterday seeing that they did tours there at 10am; it was now 11am and so I figured I might still be able to catch the tour group. Boy was I lucky, because the really fun stuff (the missile barns and stuff) were behind a locked gate!

Here it is.

Our tourguide unlocking the gate.

Two of the missile barns over the berm.

The missile assembly building. The missiles actually arrived here in pieces and had to be assembled on site. The Hercules missile is 41 feet long, this building was 42 feet long!

One of the actual missile barns.

The launching pads just outside the barn.

The bunker on the other side of the berm from the missile barn where the crew would if they had to launch a missile.

It was a pretty cool place to see; they faced some really tense moments here back during the Cuban missile crisis.

From here I headed back to Florida City and got some tacos for lunch after filling up the bike.

From there it was onto Big Cypress national forest to run Loop road.

The first bit of loop road (if you come in from the east) is paved.

Some nice warning signs.

Then the dirt starts.

IT as pretty much like that road I hit yesterday off of Card sound road. Not too hard at all, just a little mud and some big water puddles.

All in all it was quite enjoyable with beautiful scenery on either side of the road.

I eventually looped back to Hwy 41 and started to head back to Key West.

Ended up pulling back into Key West around 9pm or so. All in all a very fun weekend; weather was good enough, and the bike ran great!

STATS for day 2

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