“No name” swamp

Among the swamps most puzzling paradoxes is this:

None of its cypress domes are named.

Shallow pool of water in the middle of a dome, March 2011

Pine Islands are commonly given proper names – Thompson Pine Island to name one – as are many of the hardwood hammocks – such as Lime Tree and Iron Pot – and, to the east in the Everglades, most of the River of Grass’s larger tree islands such as Gumbo Limbo, Choctaw and Johnny Buck.

At first glance that seems to imply a preference for naming high ground.

But think again:

Most of the swamp’s linearly aligned formation of deep-water cypress – called strands – are marked on the map with names – such as Gator Hook, Barnes , Skillet and Gannet – as are most of the major marshy sloughs – Mullet and Lostmans Sloughs to name two.

Even the “middle of the road” marl meadows bare names – including Airplane, Wagon Wheel, and Lost Dog Prairies.

Most shocking of all?

Cypress domes are arguably the swamp’s most iconic and abundant land form. I could spend a year trying to explore them all and probably only cover a few, yet be all but guarantee that I’d never for a moment get bored.

They are sanctuaries of cool water where sun and shade intertwine that arch from a perimeter of dwarf cypress into a rounded apex of cascade of towering trees which at their highest point collapse into a gothic display of orchid-hiding pond apple forests and open water pools.

Water’s edge (and receding fast)

Actually, I kind of like the idea they aren’t named:

The world could use some more places like that.

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