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Take this tour if you: are interested in South Florida ecology and/or Seminole history, want to learn about Florida’s real-life Tarzan, enjoy cycling, and/or simply want to experience some of South Florida’s diverse ecosystems.

Note: you will be riding a cruiser bike on hard-packed shell rock and pavement.

Note: water is provided.

This tour is fun for: anyone and everyone.

What to bring: tennis shoes and the desire to learn.

Dragonfly Expeditions just launched a new bike tour in Jupiter Florida. I was fortunate enough to be able to accompany the tour creator on a test run of his tour and it was my job to write the official tour description (see below). We have about 50 different tours available to our clients, and for each tour we have a description. These descriptions are used to advertise our tours and give our clients an idea of what their guests will experience while on the tour. Dragonfly Expeditions is launching about 10 new tours this season, and in my opinion, this is the only interesting one. I wanted the tour to be titled “Loxahatchee Bike Adventure,” but the CEO thought that my suggestion wasn’t creative enough and renamed it “Streamside Biking along the Loxahatchee.”

I participated in this activity on: June 28th, 2012.

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Experience the subtropical ecosystem of the Loxahatchee River in a new way: by bike!  Join us for a relaxing, 8-mile bicycle ride through exotic and lush Riverbend Park near the town of Jupiter.  This area has been home to Indians, trappers, pioneers, a trailer park, and the sweetest oranges in the country.  Atop comfortable cruiser bikes, we pedal beneath jungle-like canopies, past swamps where alligators lurk, through hardwood hammocks, and across sturdy wooden bridges onto a few small islands framed by the river’s tributaries.  Our guide will help you differentiate between the ecosystems as the route wends its way through an ever-changing environment.  Don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled and your ears open for blue and white herons, egrets, ibises, white tailed deer, lizards, turkeys, ospreys and the elusive limpkin.

Hear the story of legendary Trapper Nelson, Florida’s real-life Tarzan who traveled the country by means of hitchhiking and selling animal pelts; his journey ended with the building of a zoo and home on the banks of the Loxahatchee, where he eventually suffered a mysterious death.  Take a pit stop beneath the shade of a reconstructed Seminole chickee (hut) as you learn about the Indians who once settled here, how they survived in this challenging landscape, and why they endured three wars.

As we journey around and over the Loxahatchee, Florida’s first federally designated “Wild and Scenic River,” we also pass by an old sawmill and homestead – complete with a chicken coop, windmill, garden, pig pen, and antique sugar cane press.  Our journey comes to an end as we pedal just alongside the winding, lazily-flowing Loxahatchee.  Look into the water to see flowering lily pads and – upon closer inspection – fish and turtles.  This journey gives guests the unique opportunity to hear the many stories that Riverbend Park has to tell and experience the native flora and fauna while joining us for a winding bike ride through a diverse environment.

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