9 Down; 5 To Go

After nearly 40 years of talking about watching the sun rise over the Atlantic and then set over the Gulf on the same day, we added Sunrise/Sunset to our 13 in 13 list. We started the day in June of last year on Miami Beach watching the sunrise through the clouds after a thunderstorm and the evening ended much the same way watching the sunset from the Naples pier after being chased to the car by lightning less than an hour earlier.

This year we decided that Sunrise/Sunset deserved another year on the list. In fact, we made this a new tradition, one that will be witnessed from different beaches each year. Our 2014 sunrise destination...Canaveral National Seashore, and just as we crossed the boardwalk to the beach the sun began to peek over the horizon.

We kicked off our flip flops and walked south down the beach toward the launch pads visible in the distance and came across turtle tracks from a nest that hatched earlier in the morning as well as a crab that posed for the camera. Of course we both took pictures waiting for the perfect sunrise shot.

Finally the sun broke through the clouds.

After leaving the beach we drove the Black Point Wildlife Drive, a trail Meghan had taken in the spring where she’d seen birds, gators, and even a bobcat. However, we didn’t have any such luck. I guess it’s either sunrise on the beach or wildlife at sunrise. We’ll have to try this drive another time.

Then we were off to Dunedin on the west coast for sunset, but first a stop at Eli’s BBQ for some ribs, pulled pork and all the fixin’s. After a short nap, we biked the Pinellas Trail to Honeymoon Island to work off our lunch.

And for the final stop, we loaded the bikes in the Suburban and drove across the bridge to Clearwater (I refuse to ride that bridge…much too difficult.) and then unloaded the bikes on the west side of the bridge and rode the rest of the way to Clearwater Beach.

We passed the crowded public beach and found a restaurant near St. John’s Pass, ordered a drink, and relaxed while waiting for the final leg of our trip.

Sunrise and sunset, 2014, without lightning or thunder, who could ask for more?

Wonder what two beaches will be the site of 2015 sunrise/sunset?