Amelia Island/Fort Clinch – April 3-14, 2022

This place is one of our favorites. The past couple of weeks, we have had fabulous weather. Our time on the computer has been focused on booking campsites for next year, on Florida’s new reservation system. It is proving to be very challenging to book a decent site. Otherwise, we are mostly outdoors, walking, running, hanging at the beach or exploring. We will not likely have good internet until around May 8.

Nice campsite at Fort Clinch State Park. The beachside campground is a very short walk to the beach. Nice to hear the ocean from camp.

Fort Clinch, Fernandina Beach FL
Construction of the fort began in 1847. During the Civil War, it was initially under Confederate control, until it was evacuated. Later, it was a critical fort during the Spanish American War and an operations center during WWll.
Fort Clinch State Park, Fernandina Beach FL
Fort Clinch State Park, Fernandina Beach FL
Fort Clinch State Park, Fernandina Beach FL
Beautiful sea shells at Fort Clinch State Park! Most people are looking for fossilized shark teeth. They regularly dredge the channel into the St Mary’s River for the ships and submarines stationed at Kingsbay Naval Submarine base. This is probably why the ancient fossils are easy to find. The three I found are near the quarter in this photo.
Baby alligator (photo taken from inside truck) Fort Clinch State Park, Fernandina Beach , FL
Dave, hunting for shark teeth
Fort Clinch State Park, Fernandina Beach, FL
A submarine being escorted past Fort Clinch. We were so lucky to see one!
The Palace Saloon, Fernandina Beach, FL
It was built in 1878 and was a men’s shoe store until it became an upscale bar in 1903. It is the oldest bar in Florida and was the last American tavern to close during Prohibition. It survived that dry era as an ice cream parlor. It was once a favorite haunt of the Carnegies, the Rockefellers and other socialites.
This shark tooth fossil is likely from a megalodon shark over 5 million years ago. A guy who regularly camps and fishes at Fort Clinch State Park, simply looked down and found this, one morning, a few years ago. He has carried it with him since then. A store in town buys and sells shark teeth. A tooth 30% smaller than this, costs around $600.