October/November 2021 Vacation Day 16 PAGE 51.

November 10, 2021:  Wednesday continues going south into Florida.  This is the state line sign so many tourists look for as they come to the Sunshine State of Florida.  This image is at the south end of a bridge across the Saint Mary's River which is the natural border between Georgia and Florida at this point.  The blue water seen through the trees at the left side of this image is part of the river as it winds around this location.  This mile marker at the right side of the image shows it is 382 miles to the END of Interstate 95 near the south side of the city of Miami where it connects to US 1.  US 1 goes all the way down to Key West in the Florida Keys, but that is another story.

I mentioned how US 17 and I-95 would cross paths in Florida.  Here is the first encounter just 2 miles south of the state line.  US 17 is headed toward Jacksonville, Florida.

After passing the exit to the Jacksonville International Airport, this sign about the I-95 bypass around the city offers East Side, West Side, or drive through the city which is what we did on this day heading for home.

The next big route choice is near the city center of Jacksonville.  The LARGE road signs on the pavement minimize the chances of drivers being in the wrong lane when the routes divide ahead.  Although US 17 is not painted on the roadway, Google Earth has tagged this image as US 17 along for the ride before it heads south from Jacksonville to Orlando, inland away from the Atlantic Ocean.

Most everyone looks at the overhead signs when approaching a major interstate highway junction.  From this vantage point, each driver can see the divide in the roadway ahead.

These LEFT lanes are for I-95 southbound, but just in case a driver is over here wishing he was getting on I-10 heading WEST, here is one last chance to get there.  Interstate 10 goes all the way to Santa Monica on the Pacific Ocean in the Los Angeles area of Southern California.

If you have worked your way through the I-95 / I-10 split properly, you will be on this approach to the Fuller-Warren bridge across the Saint Johns River seen at the right side of this image.  It is one of a few rivers in the USA that flow NORTH before reaching the Atlantic Ocean which is EAST of Jacksonville and the big US naval base out there.  For now, keep left in one of the three lanes and follow the Daytona Beach sign at the next split if you are heading south.

Here is the other sign which will get you out of town, but which way?  Daytona Beach on I-95 is for most of the THRU traffic to all cities on the East Coast of Florida.  US 1 is Phillips Highway and an old local route all the way down to Miami and Key West if you want to see a lot of OLD FLORIDA.  US 1 runs more or less parallel to I-95 so you do not have to make that decision here in JAX, which is the three-letter code for Jacksonville International Airport.  If you want to see the nearest beaches, take US 90 East to Florida route A1A.

The next town south of Jacksonville is the oldest city in the USA that was established by the Spanish colonists when Florida was claimed by them.  I am speaking about Saint Augustine.  One of the things some folks think about is these two factory outlet open air malls on opposite sides of Interstate 95.  Here is the west side of the highway

Here is the East side of the highway with another mall.

IF you like browsing factory outlet malls, I-95 Exit 318 near Saint Augustine, Florida has two of these outlet malls with one on each side to the interstate highway.  The morning sun on the Google Earth camera car  required some  processing of the image below to make the sign more legible.

The next big intersection on I-95 in Florida is where I-4 starts at Daytona Beach and goes to Orlando, Lakeland, and to the big cities of Tampa and Saint Petersburg, Florida on the Gulf Coast of Florida.  We are going south on I-95 to bypass Orlando traffic as we go back to the Saint Cloud and Kissimmee area.

Getting off at EXIT 202 is route 524 where a right turn is a short route about half a mile to Florida 520 that goes west about 3 miles to the Saint Johns River as the border between Orange County and Brevard County this far south of Jacksonville where the river is much smaller.

Here is the county line crossing the Saint Johns River into Orange County.  The last county road we take getting closer to home is only about 3 miles to the WEST of the Saint Johns River and it is county road 532.

Here is a combined image showing a green sign indicating a LEFT turn ahead leaving County route 520, where the LEFT turn is onto County Route 532 that runs for 26 miles until it ends at US 441/US 192 on the East side of the town of Saint Cloud, Florida.

This end of the road starts at this intersection in Orange County, the same county where Orlando is located.  At this point route 532 is going almost due south.

The change in the color of the asphalt of the road defines the county line where Osceola County begins the maintenance to County Road 532.  The Google Earth image below is from 2019 and did not show the county sign.  I had to jump over to US 192 entering from Brevard County to cut and paste the sign seen here.

This Google Earth image is looking south to show the speed limit sign facing north to traffic that just started down the road from Orange County into Osceola County.

One of the things the county did was to put mile markers on the surface of the road counting down to the southern end of the road at US 192.  This is the second sign inside the county that is in better shape than the numbers at marker 23.

I placed push pins at the locations of the painted mile markers on this part of Florida County road 532, also known as NOVA ROAD by the locals.

I have been in the CATV, TV Broadcast, satellite, and fiber optics communications industry since 1971.  I have seen a lot of TALL television towers in my lifetime.  There are a couple of those towers accessed from Nova Road.  This TV tower is less than half a mile East of route 532 near mile marker 21 with a UHF antenna at the top of the tower.  This location is between Orlando and the Melbourne / Brevard County communities.  Those large electric power line towers connect a few power plants together from several areas of Florida.

Here is the same camera angle but the magnification set to minimum for wide-angle imagery that confirms the tower is visible from mile marker 21.  Just so you know, that white line is the edge of the pavement on route 532.  It is not a divider between two photos.  That orange marker about 2 feet above ground level is for a buried telephone cable near the edge of the right-of-way for the highway.

Jumping ahead to the ZERO mile marker location is the end of Nova Road at the junction of US 192 and US 441 East of the city of Saint Cloud, Florida.  We turned right here at 1:49 PM to head WEST, the real direction of this part of the route, takes us to the end of our journey that began October 26 and ends here on November 10 for a 16-Day trip to new horizons and back to HOME!

This is the view heading west after the first traffic light on the East side of Saint Cloud, Florida.  This place is about 6.4 miles from home with stop lights and cross streets ahead.

The feeling of being home is when you pass by one of your favorite restaurants like this Village Inn, and the Pepboys Auto next door where I recently bought new tires for my RAV 4 after 63,000 miles on the original factory-installed tires.  A hostess at the restaurant is married to the manager of this Pepboys location.

Directly across the highway is this Chili's restaurant where I picked up take out meals when the Covid-19 Lockdown began.  I would order our meals online and pick them up at the take out door.  We still order our take out meals once every week from here.

The other steak house not far from  home is this OUTBACK Steakhouse that is next to where the Florida Turnpike crosses US 192 and US 441 near the Kissimmee/Saint Cloud exit from the turnpike 1.5 miles from here to the west.

There is no place like home!  Engine off at 2:10 PM in the driveway.  Traffic was stop and go through Saint Cloud.  The the last two miles were easy.