Leaving Fort Lauderdale we made our way north to Fort Pierce and settled in at the Savannas Recreation Area. This is a wonderful St Lucie County campground with full hookups. It is also another one of the very popular, hard to reserve Florida county parks. Our campsite backed up to a narrow canal. A stiff wind during our stay kept away mosquitoes. There were many signs warning of alligators in the canal but we only saw one during our week stay. The Savannas area is a popular fishing and kayaking area but it was too windy to get out on the water while we were there.
We enjoyed driving around the Fort Pierce area. We looked for other possible campgrounds for future visits but didn’t really see anything we liked better than where we were staying.
We did some geocaching and stopped by the old Fort Pierce site. The fort along the Indian River was built in 1838 as a main supply depot for the army during the Second Seminole War. It was abandoned in 1842 at the end of the war and burned down the next year. Nothing left now but some historical markers and a beautiful view. It is also the site of an ancient burial mound of the Ais Indian tribe who once lived from the Cape Canaveral area to Saint Lucie inlet.
Last summer while traveling through Pennsylvania we stopped by Shanksville to pay our respects at the site where United Flight 93 crashed on September 11, 2001 due to a terrorist attack. We noticed on the wall honoring those who died, the name of CeeCee Ross Lyles from Fort Pierce. She had been a member of the Fort Pierce Police Department before becoming a flight attendant. We knew there had to be a memorial to her somewhere in Fort Pierce. We stopped by the Fort Pierce Visitors Center and found out it was just a short walk away. We found her statue and memorial at a beautiful, peaceful spot overlooking Indian River.
Next we traveled to Vero Beach for a five night stay to visit Bill’s son Sean, Sean’s fiancee Cathy and Bill’s Aunt Charlotte. Always nice to visit with them!
As we continued traveling north our next stop was one of our favorites, Jetty Park in Cape Canaveral. Jetty Park is a Brevard County Park campground, extremely popular and rather pricey. We love this campground because there is an easy, close access to a beautiful beach and we can watch cruise ships depart each day. It is a great place to watch rocket launches at the Space Center. We watched a couple of launches when we were there last year but unfortunately none were scheduled while we were here this year. During our ten day stay we spent time at the beach and enjoyed long walks on the beach, pier and boardwalks. The beach was beautiful both during the day and at night under the full moon. Each day we watched cruise ships departing with throngs of excited passengers crowding the decks.
We learned that on March 10, 1783 the last Continental Naval engagement occurred nearby during our eight-year War for Independence. The Continental Frigate Alliance inflicted severe damage on the British warship HMS Sybil and then went on to her destination in Rhode Island.
One day Bill’s college friend Pete and his wife Beth drove over from their home near the gulf coast to spend the day with us. Bill and Pete reconnected back in January after almost forty years and we have enjoyed seeing them several times during our five and a half months in Florida this winter. Thanks so much Pete and Beth for making the long drive over to Jetty Park. Much, much too soon our time in Jetty Park was over. (Huge sigh)