19-Mar-2013 -- After attending a conference in Orlando, I spent a few days on a 'mini vacation' in southern Florida: Flying to Key West, then renting a car there and driving it back to Orlando. Of course, I had degree confluence points on my mind the whole time. Two points in particular - [26,-81] and [27,-81] - intrigued me, as they had each been visited only once, more than eleven years ago.
The previous day I had investigated [26,-81], but realized that it would require at least a 20 mile round-trip hike (or perhaps mountain bike ride) along the Florida Trail. [27,-81], on the other hand, I could get much closer to. I found that by driving to the end of Roberson(sic) Road, I could get to within about 1.5 miles of the confluence point, but a large irrigation canal was in the way, so this would not be a good starting point. I needed to find a way to cross this canal.
The previous visitor had found a road (to the south) that crossed the canal to a boat ramp. They used this as their starting point, but this was still 3.5 miles from the confluence point. I found a better access point to the north: A pumping station at [27.0304,-81.0026], just 2 miles from the confluence point. Although a locked gate prevents you from driving along the top of the canal's levee, it's (presumably) OK to walk or bike along the levee instead. I started walking south along the levee, then headed south-eastward towards the confluence point.
I immediately encountered a waist-deep swampy creek. Undeterred, I waded through this, but found that the swampy conditions continued afterwards. Although the water at this point was only calf-deep, there was a lot of thick vegetation in the way, and I quickly realized that I would not be able to get to the confluence point and back before sunset. So I was forced to abandon this attempt, about 1.8 miles from the confluence point.
This confluence point (along with [26,-81]) will have to wait until some future visit to Florida). I will not give up on them easily!