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Big Johnson Lake, Florida, USA by Craig Walters

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On a typically hot and humid July day in north central Florida, I traveled to one of Florida’s first state parks, the Mike Roess Gold Head Branch State Park near the village of Keystone Heights. My intention was to take images that capture the essence of the natural features contained in the marshes, lakes and scrub of the park. The unique feature for which the park is named is a steep, narrow ravine with seepage springs forming Gold Head Branch whose crystal clear waters flow over golden sand, bisecting the park.

After exploring the ravine I was drawn to photograph the open vistas surrounding the several lakes in the park. Big Johnson Lake is typical of the shallow, freshwater lakes which occur throughout northern Florida. I was able to capture the large, open area of the lake and surrounding wetlands as well as the distant forest and the dramatic sky and clouds.

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