There is a gem of a place located off Winter Lake Road in Lakeland Florida that I had the pleasure to visiting recently. If you enjoy birding, the outdoors and Florida nature than this is the place for you. Named after a cattle ranch that once occupied the property. The Polk County Environmental Lands program acquired the property and completed several restoration projects in 2005 and 2006 to restore the land back to its historical hydrologic function. The result is an oasis of wildlife. We spent a day wandering through the oak hammock, freshwater marsh, hardwood swamp and along the shore of Lake Hancock, and still didn’t walk all of the trails. Osprey, Bald Eagle, wading birds, water fowl, and alligators were in abundance.
There is no entrance fee at the park. So, pack a lunch and don’t forget your sunscreen and camera because the opportunities to capture great photos are endless. Here are just a few that we got during our little adventure.
I can’t wait for spring. We plan on going back throughout the year to experience the changes in the flora and fauna that the different seasons bring.