The Everglades’ Old Ingraham Highway

Old Ingraham HighwayOne of the oldest and most historic roads in the Everglades is Old Ingraham Highway.  Work began on this road in 1916 and it was completed in 1922. The road was named after James E. Ingraham, who was the president of the Model Land Company and vice president of the Florida East Coast Railroad. Since this road goes through Royal State park and Florida East Coast Railroad helped making Royal Palm a State Park, it made sense the road was named after Ingraham.

This road was created to be a way to access the Flamingo area. People would drive their vehicles down to visit areas along Florida Bay. It was built on piles of limestone. The old road still exists from the Anhinga Trail to Snake Night. This road is no longer open to cars or bikes, and is considered a wilderness area.

If you’re looking to hike this road, please note there is little shade and it is around 10 miles, 20 miles round trip. Wear sunglasses, hats, and apply sunscreen. This takes around 5 hours to complete, one way. This is an easy to navigate path. The pavement has disintegrated, and the road is mostly gravel or potholes these days. Since it is a wilderness area, the trail isn’t maintained like some other trails in the Park. Be aware there could be a few plants or branches that you may have dodge.  You will come across mangroves and sawgrass, along with endless other plants.

Along the trail, there is a canal where birds and alligators can be spotted, especially during the dry season. The trail is open year-round.  There are also entrances to old campsites on the trail, but they are no longer in use.

Walking around the Everglades is a truly magical experience; however, it can also be extremely hot, tiring, and buggy. If you’d like a cooler, less exhaustive and equally-as-fun way to get around the Everglades, jump on an airboat tour with Captain Mitch’s Airboat Tours. Captain Mitch has been people around around the Everglades for decades. To book an airboat tour, click here or call 800-368-0065.

 

photo courtesy: npplan.com