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Biking at the Sanibel refuge

By Staff | Mar 17, 2020

To the editor:

My favorite bike ride in Sanibel is the eight-mile loop through the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge, which costs me one dollar and provides a very pleasant hour of peaceful nature watching. I am very fortunate to live nearby and enjoy this activity two or three times a week.

Usually I pass through the gate quickly, no problem. But today there were four cars ahead and one behind, which actually cut in front of my bike as I approached. Realizing this would take awhile, since they all were asking directions and wanting receipts for their $5 (should be $10, I think), I decided to just go to the front and hand over my $1 bill.

Whereupon the gate lady started yelling loudly “Get in line!” waving her hands frantically. I approached, handing over my dollar bill and asked if she meant me. Yes she did, and wanted me to go back behind the line of smelly carbon emitting cars. “You need to be respectful of cars,” she said. Then she let me go by.

So really? I thought we should be respectful of our environment, not cars. I thought bikes were preferred on Sanibel. I’m wondering if I’m wrong.

I have a suggestion for the refuge: How about just putting a donation box for the bikers and walkers. We can just drop in our dollar and keep on going. It seems this plan might be better for us all.

Linda Wulff