Sarasota County High Point Trip Report

three areas (100+ ft)

Date: December 6, 2002
Author: Dave Covill

This is a very interesting exercise in topo map reading versus understanding the lay of the land. I feel that previous reports missed the crucial fact that the county line is about 0.1 mile WEST of 284th Street. The map shows a poor road leading due north up the county line, and not much else. Well, a lot has happened since then. The old road is a very faint 2-track trace at the east edge of the orange groves, and at the back, west edge of the houses on the west wide of the street. Brand new 284th Street is 0.1 mile east of the county line marker, and while it meanders slightly, it basically goes due north from Singletary Road, up and over the center of the largest 100-foot contour, and back down to the north. Given this, the 3 contours are now mostly well west of the nice, paved road, and to claim this cohp, one must have left the road and wandered about a good deal in back of the houses to count it. It sounds as if Larry Lawton was successful here in September 2002.

From I-75, take exit # 210 - Fruitville Road # 780. Go east 11.2 miles to a T, turn left (north) on Verna Road, and go 1.1 miles north to Singletary Road, go east 1.1 miles to the Magnolia Hill subdivision. This is 0.1 mile past the county line marker into Manatee County, and the pavement changes ever so slightly there as well. Turn left into the subdivision (north) onto 284th Street, and go about 0.6 mile to # 10006 284th Street. You are roughly in the center of the largest, eastern-most 100+ foot contour area. 289th Street at 1.0 mile is too far, and is downhill. This house is owned by the Longs, who were not home when I rang the doorbell. They, like many neighbors, have pushed up sand into piles for landscaping, and own several tiny ponds. The land at the back of the house is highest for the eastern contour probably.

Drive 100 yards south, and park and walk a dirt lane due west into an orange grove, about 0.2 mile to the edge of it. You pass the house with the barking dogs to your left in the process. There is a fence line here, and I feel it is directly on top of the county line.

From here, walk due west then north then return, feeling out for the other 2 areas, although it is pretty flat for approximately 100 yards in all directions from this point of entry into the grove.

We drove back out to Singletary, went west 0.5 mile, and noticed a gated horse property community called Ranch Club. We drove due north 1.0 mile on Ranch Club Boulevard, which curved due east for about 0.3 mile and terminated at a couple of unbuilt lots. From here, you are about 0.2 mile northwest of the westernmost contour area, and you can see that it is uphill to there, and it lies in the groves. Lot 22 may back up to that contour.