Skip to main content

Catching Up: 2011 Florida Trip - Part 2: Drive to Key West

(Editor's Note: While there's some slow time in the few week's before we have a new addition to the family, I'm trying to catch up on blog entries that I wanted to post or started but never completed.  This is another one of those entries.)

Day 2 of the Florida Trip was the haul from Tampa to Key West.  It was more interesting than the ride from Raleigh to Tampa and a lot more photos this time as well. For the photo proof, you can head to flickr.

Route: I-275, I-75, FL 951, US 41, FL 991, US 1.

We decided to take US 41, the Tamiami Trail, instead of I-75/Alligator Alley and it was actually a pretty nice ride.  Even if this poorly made US highway shield was up along the route.

IMG_6512

Just east of where US 41 meets FL 29 is the Ochopee Post Office.  One of a series of Post Offices that claim to be the country's or world's smallest post office.

IMG_6519

Now I have been to the "World's Smallest Mailing Office" in Silver Lake, WV.  Unlike Silver Lake, Ochopee is still a functioning Post Office.  It's a former irrigation shed that was pressed into service in 1953 after a fire destroyed the Ochopee General Store, which housed the Post Office.  It was closed when we went through.

We turned onto FL 997 and I was amazed at the number of Avacado stands and tropical plant nurseries there were along the entire route.  It was certainly something I wasn't used to seeing.

For roadgeeks, finding a fast-disappearing colored US Route Shield is an accomplishment.  I wasn't expecting to find one, but when we stopped at the Florida Keys Visitor Center in Key Largo. They preserved one.

IMG_6545

We also saw an I think rare Monroe County C-905 marker.

South C-905

We also stopped at the Florida Keys Memorial, honoring those that died in the 1935 Labor Day Hurricane, in Islamorada.

IMG_6819

The 1935 Labor Day Hurricane is one of the most powerful hurricanes to ever hit the United States.  The Category 5 Hurricane killed over 400 people.  Many of which were WPA workers and their families. 

We also stopped at the Seven Mile Bridge.

IMG_6550

The newer structure, built in 1982, replaced a rail bridge constructed in 1912 for Henry Flagler's Overseas Railroad.  When the 1935 Labor Day Hurricane destroyed much of the railroad, the federal government took over and converted the rail bridge to a highway bridge.  Fortunately, there's a good bit of the original span still standing and is used as a walking and bike trail today.

IMG_6557

I can't imagine how anyone could drive on that narrow of a highway for nearly 50 years!

With that it was onto Key West...and Part 3 of the trip "Exploring Key West" next to come.

Comments

Jim said…
I'd love to see the old 7 Mile Bridge one day. On the sections you can't get to anymore except by boat, there are trees growing on the deck!
vugurs said…
I Like Your Blog Too Much....

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 232

This past month I drove the entirety of California State Route 232 in Ventura County. CA 232 is an approximately 4 miles State Highway aligned on Vineland Avenye which begins near Saticoy at CA 118 and traverses southwest to US Route 101 in Oxnard.  The alignment of CA 232 was first adopted into the State Highway System in 1933 as Legislative Route Number 154 according to CAhighways.org. CAhighways.org on LRN 154 As originally defined LRN 154 was aligned from LRN 9 (future CA 118) southwest to LRN 2/US 101 in El Rio.  This configuration of LRN 154 between CA 118/LRN 9 and US 101/LRN 2 can be seen on the 1935 California Division of Highways Map of Ventura County. 1935 Ventura County Highway Map According to CAhighways.org the route of LRN 154 was extended west from US 101/LRN 2 to US 101A/LRN 60 in 1951.  Unfortunately State Highway Maps do not show this extension due to it being extremely small. During the 1964 State Highway Renumbering LRN 154 was assigned CA 232.  Of n

Former US Route 50 and the South Lincoln Highway from Folsom east to Placerville

The corridor of Folsom of Sacramento County east to Placerville of El Dorado County has been a long established corridor of overland travel dating back to the California Gold Rush.  The Folsom-Placerville corridor was once part of the path of the Lake Tahoe Wagon Road which became the first California State Highway and later the South Lincoln Highway.  In time the South Lincoln Highway's surface alignment was inherited by US Route 50.  The Folsom-Placerville corridor also includes the communities of; Clarksville, Shingle Springs and El Dorado. Part 1; the history of the Lake Tahoe Wagon Road, South Lincoln Highway and US Route 50 through Folsom-Placerville Folsom is located on the American River/Lake Natoma of eastern Sacramento County.  That lands now occupied by the City of Folsom were part of Rancho Rio de los Americanos prior to the finding of gold at Sutter's Mill during 1848.  During the California Gold Rush the lands of Rancho Rio de los Americanos were purchased by Jose

Legacy of US Route 466 Part 3; Morro Bay to Shandon via Rocky Canyon

Part 3 of the US Route 466 Legacy series consists of the roadways that made up the highway between Morro Bay and Shandon of San Luis Obispo County.  The San Luis Obispo County segment of US Route 466 is notable due to it having been carried via a dirt segment through Rocky Canyon from 1933 to 1958.  Pictured in the cover photo of this blog is former US Route 466 facing westward into Rocky Canyon. Part 1 and Part 2 of the US Route 466 Legacy Series can be found below: Legacy of US Route 466 Part 1; California State Route 46 Legacy of US Route 466 Part 2; Tehachapi to Bakersfield  Part 1; mapping early US Route 466 in San Luis Obispo County As discussed in Part 1 of the US Route 466 Legacy series the western terminus of US Route 466 ("US 466") from it's inception until truncation in the 1965 was located in Morro Bay at California State Route 1 ("CA 1"). US 466 between Morro Bay and Shandon had two two primary alignments through it's history.  The initia