My Day at Circle B Bar Reserve

The long, hot summer is almost upon us. But OLLI Connects wants to remind you about the marvelous nature hikes available to members in the early spring and fall/winter season. We hope you will enjoy the sensational photographs displayed in two special editions this week, and encourage everyone to consider joining the OLLI Outdoors nature and hiking SIG when it starts up again in the fall. And even if you are a solitary hiker, we hope these articles will inspire you to take a trip out to Circle B Bar Reserve–Editor

Recently I went with a few friends to hike and take photographs at Circle B Bar Reserve near Lakeland.  It was a LONG drive there but well worth it.  It is a very large park of more than 2,000 acres. We hiked four and a half miles and saw not even a quarter of the park.  We took Marsh Rabbit Run (where we were stopped by a large alligator blocking the trail) and Alligator Alley which was my favorite. The large trees shading Alligator Alley are lovely.

There is a large lake (Lake Hancock) along with many smaller “canals” for lack of a better word.  I have never in my life seen so many Great Blue Herons and Anhingas in one place. We saw a Bald Eagle nest with an eagle sitting on it. We also saw many Ospreys.

To see the address, the hours of operation, and a trail list with descriptions, click here.

Even the parking lot gave the photographers images worth capturing.

A fallen tree in the parking lot

We took this trail back to Lake Hancock.

And we’ll share the rest of our hike in photographs.

Eagle’s nest
An Anhinga in an unusual pose
A Great Blue Heron thinking about lunch
Another Great Blue on the shoreline
A Great Blue in flight
One of the many Tricolor Herons we saw
Another hungry Tricolor
The only Snowy Egret who was close enough to photograph

We’ll leave you with a Web photo of Lake Hancock at sunset.


Mary Satterwhite is a life-long lover of books and reading as well as of nature. Raised in a small town in Florida, she recalls walking to the library by herself starting at the age of 8. As a child she wandered in the woods with her dogs, perfectly content to observe life in all its wonders. As an adult, she became a librarian and eventually served as Director of the Temple Terrace Public Library. Now retired, she continues to roam through the woods in the company of her dogs, and especially enjoys nature walks in places like Circle B Bar Reserve.

4 Replies to “My Day at Circle B Bar Reserve”

  1. Hi Mary, you are such an artist photographer–and make us aware of the wealth of birds right under our noses! All we have to do is follow your footsteps . . . .
    Thanks for your lovely article.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.