Two RV Gypsies: Full-Time RVers
Florida sign display

at Big Shoals State Park
White Springs, Florida

April 1, 2009 (and again on April 24, 2010)

The two RV Gypsies visited White Springs, Florida in April 2009 and again in April 2010. They spent a lot of time at Big Shoals State Park on a rainy day in 2009, and revisited Big Shoals State Park again on a sunny day in 2010. They discovered that more than just the weather of the day had changed as shown in both sets of photos below.

Big Shoals State Park features the largest whitewater rapids in Florida. Limestone bluffs, towering 80 feet above the banks of the Suwannee River, afford outstanding vistas not found anywhere else in Florida. When the water level on the Suwannee River is between 59 and 61 feet above mean sea level, the Big Shoals rapids earn a Class III Whitewater classification, attracting thrill-seeking canoe and kayak enthusiasts. Over 28 miles of wooded trails provide opportunities for hiking, biking, horseback riding and wildlife viewing. The Woodpecker Trail, a 3.4-mile long multipurpose paved trail, connects the Little Shoals and Big Shoals entrances to the park. The river offers excellent opportunities for freshwater fishing. A picnic pavilion that seats up to 40 people is available at the Little Shoals entrance.

Big Shoals State Park in White Springs, Florida
April 1, 2009
Below: The dirt road entrance to Big Shoals State Park and the bridge at the entrance to Big Shoals Park
The dirt road entrance
Lee Duquette on a bridge
A big smile on a rainy day in the woods
- this sign was nowhere to be found in 2010
This is what you get when you take
your own photo with a real camera
Karen Duquette at the Big Shoals sign in the woods
Karen Duquette
The two RV Gypsies enjoyed a 2-mile hike on a rainy day - This river was not reachable when the two RV Gypsies returned in 2010.
Karen Duquette by the river - April 2009
Lee Duquette by the river - April 2009

This park claims the largest whitewater rapids in Florida. When the water level on the Suwannee River is between 59 and 61 feet above mean sea level, the Big Shoals rapids earn a Class III Whitewater classification, attracting thrill-seeking canoe and kayak enthusiasts.

The Suwannee River
The Suwannee River
The Suwannee River
The Suwannee River
The Suwannee River
The Suwannee River
Lee Duquette by the Suwannee River
Lee Duquette by the Suwannee River
Lee Duquette in the woods
the river
Below: Lee Duquette on the beach April 2009 - writing in the sand - the rain had temporarily stopped. (This sand was unreachable by the two RV Gypsies in April 2010)
Lee Duquette at the beach
Lee Duquette writing in the sand
Below: Lee Duquette wrote in the sand "We were here April 1"
Lee Duquette writing in the sand
Lee Duquette writing in the sand
Below: Lee Duquette wrote Karen Duquette's name in the sand - how sweet!
Karen's name in the sand
Karen Duquette at the beach in her rain gear
Below: Lee and Karen Duquette enjoyed the beach and the woods.
Lee Duquette
Karen Duquette
Karen Duquette
Karen Duquette
Below: An Armadillo ran right in front of the two RV Gypsies as they were hiking.
An Armadillo
An Armadillo
As stated above, the two RV Gypsies returned to this area one year later on April 27, 2010 and found that nature had really changed the area. The path to the beach and the river was no longer accessible. But since this was a nice day without rain, the two RV Gypsies decided to continue on the trail to actually see the limestone bluffs at Big Shoal this time. But after walking the trail for over an hour, they found the trail leading away from the river, so they turned around. It was not anywhere near as enjoyable as the first trip, even though it was pouring rain the first trip.

April 27, 2010

The road into Little Shoals
Lunch area
The road into Little Shoals
Lee setting up the lunch area
Below; The Woodpecker Trail, a 3.4 mile long multipurpose paved trail, connects the Little Shoals and Big Shoals entrances to the park. The two RV Gypsies walked part of this trail, then they noticed a small road alongside the trail and decided to drive that road to Big Shoals, so they turned around to get into their toad.
The Woodpecker Trail,
Below: This side road was a bit bouncy, and Karen Duquette was a bit concerned about what to do if a car came from the other direction because there was no room for two cars to pass each other. These first 3 photos were taken through the tinted front window of the truck as it drove along the dirt "road" in the woods.
the dirt road
the dirt road
Below: After taking 3 photos through the tinted front window of the truck as it drove along the dirt "road" in the woods, Karen got out to get a better photo of the truck that would show that only one vehicle fits on the road at a time.
the dirt road
the toad of the two RV Gypsies on the dirt road
No problem - safe arrival at the parking lot to Big Shoals without meeting another vehicle.
Big  Shoals sign
Lee Duquette
Below: Looking through the trees at the Suwannee River, which was not reachable from this trail on this date.
Looking through the trees at the Suwannee River
Looking through the trees at the Suwannee River
lee Looking through the trees at the Suwannee River
Looking through the trees at the Suwannee River
Looking through the trees at the Suwannee River
Below: A swamp area on the side of the trail away from the river.
a swamp area
a swamp area
a swamp area
Below: Karen Duquette photographed a very small lizard.
a very small lizard
a very small lizard
Below: Lee duquette photographed a yucky critter in a tree. The park says there are poisonous snakes in the area, so this could be one or not, but whatever it is, Karen Duquette hated the photo, but Lee wanted it posted on this website anyway.
a yucky critter
Below: While Lee Duquette looked at the trail map, Karen Duquette took a few photos from the little bridge.
Lee checking the map
photo from the little bridge
photo from the little bridge
photo from the little bridge
photo from the little bridge

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