Dead Lakes, Florida. The Chipola River rises near Dothan, Alabama, and travels 90 miles due south through the Florida Panhandle, passing through Marianna, before joining the Apalachicola River on its way to the Gulf of Mexico.
Towards the end of its journey, near Wewahitchka, it becomes the Dead Lakes State Park. Although it's a man-made landscape formed by the damming of the river around 80 years ago, it is nevertheless strikingly prehistoric in appearance, like a primordial swamp from The Lost World.Stumps of Bald Cypress trees rise from the water like jagged teeth, some still crowned with foliage, where Belted kingfishers hunt and nest. Turtles, including the rare Barbour's Map turtle (found only in this area and nowhere else in the world) bask on every fallen trunk and exposed surface they can climb upon, while hidden from view in the vegetation along the banks lurk the alligators.