April 3, 2011

4/1/11 – Fontainebleau SP

This is the day that we didn’t go to the French Quarter in New Orleans.  George was being persnickity and didn’t think it was safe unless we went on a tour bus.  He didn’t want to park the truck anywhere downtown NO.  I made the mistake of selecting an RV park on the north shore rather than in New Orleans proper, so no handy-dandy tours were available.  NEXT TIME we’ll stay at Lake Pontchartraine RV, which has their own buses to take you downtown.
Anyway, rather than spending the day at the trailer in a pique I found a state park on our side of the lake.  It was built at the site of an old plantation, but the only thing still remaining from that period is the old sugar mill.  Exhibits at the Visitor Center explain about the history of the plantation, sugar mill and the owner.
The remains of the sugar mill are right outside the Visitor Center—just a couple of tall chimneys and a few brick walls fenced in so you can’t wander around the crumbling brick.  Everything is leaning precariously, but it’s still amazing that anything is left after 150 years of neglect.
We decided to take the Alligator Marsh Boardwalk trail through the sweetgum and cypress trees.  Wildflowers are starting to bloom, but you have to hunt hard to find them.  There are 2 boardwalks when you get to the end, so you can look for fish and alligators and waterfowl.  We found a baby alligator floating in the gunk (semi-technical word for moss and algae that makes the water a mess). 

We checked out the rest of the park after the hike.  They’ve got a lot of camping sites, and down by the lake is a fishing pier and a big pavillion.  No wonder this is the busiest state park in Louisiana.

To see the baby alligator and more park pictures, click here:  Fontainebleau SP

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