10-Jan-2011 -- We were touring along the Gulf Coast of Florida. As this confluence is only 5.6 miles (as the crow flies) from the motel where we were staying in Port Charlotte, we couldn't resist a visit. It was another lovely warm but windy day in Florida.
We drove east from Port Charlotte to Harbour Heights where a sign welcomed us to the town and stated that it was "A Designated Bird Sanctuary". The temperature was 76°F as we pulled up to the confluence at 11:30 AM. No one was at home in the confluence house on sparsely populated Pinellas Drive. However, we could hear a dog barking inside the home after Alan rang the doorbell. Alan took the liberty of walking on their lawn just to the side of the driveway so he could get the zeros. He accomplished this fairly easily and we soon had the various views photographed.
It seemed that there must be something more to add to this visit so we drove around the area a little. Less than a mile from the confluence spot we found Harbour Heights Park on Whidden Bay. Whidden Bay connects to Charlotte Harbor which in turn connects to the Gulf of Mexico. At a boat launch area, we saw people removing their boat from the water to tow it away behind their truck. Near the launch area, a red sign warned, "CAUTION Alligators may be present". A white sign off shore stated, "Manatee Zone SLOW SPEED Minimum Wake"... this is good as Manatees are large and slow moving so they can easily get injured by high powered boat motors.
As I walked around the park taking photographs of Palm trees, birds, docks, and picnic tables, I kept checking around carefully to make sure there were no alligators nearby. As well as the lovely Palms, there were other trees with Spanish Moss hanging from the branches and swaying in the breeze. A few people came to play tennis at the park and some construction workers stopped to have their lunch at one of the picnic tables. Black Turkey Vultures soared overhead.
With another confluence visited - our most southerly visit to date - and more than enough beautiful photos to use, we headed north along the Gulf Coast.