My husband and I went fishing one day with my in-laws on Dead Lake near the small town of Wewahitchka, Florida, called Wewa for short by the locals. Yes, there are really dead lakes with a lot of dead trees that could make the trip dangerous, however, we survived. The name of the lake and the dead trees inspired this mystery set on Dead Lakes in Wewahitchka, Florida. Yes, there's more than one lake. These lakes are legendary. According to Florida State Parks, Gulf.com, and the City of Wewahitchka, sand bars created by the current in the Apalachicola River blocked the Chipola River. High water killed the trees in the flood zone and gave the area its name.
The Seminole Indian name means "water eyes" because when viewed from the sky there are two round lakes resembling eyes. The city is located in the Florida Panhandle's northern Gulf County and has approximately 1,800 residents. It's best known for the Dead Lakes and Tupelo Honey, which is world famous and has been harvested for over one hundred years from the Apalachicola River Basin. Peter Fonda's 1997 movie "Ulee's Gold" was set in this majestic beauty. It's a story about the beekeepers.
If you decide to try your luck with fishing on Dead Lake, be forewarned of a graveyard of cypress knees and dead stumps that can tear apart a boat or motor. I hear the fishing can be good. In fact, it's considered the best. You'll find crappie, blue gill (bream), shellcracker, large mouth bass, and white bass. Maybe you'll have better luck fishing than we did, if you believe in luck, fisherman's luck, that is. Dead Lakes State Recreation Area is only a mile north of Wewa.
The many cypress trees create a beautiful majesty and though we didn't catch any fish that day, I enjoyed the boating and beautiful scenery. You'll find a variety of trees including magnolia, cypress, longleaf pine, and sweetbay. I took a spiral notebook and pen with me and began this mystery. I hope you'll find it intriguing. It's the first one in my Dead Lake Mystery series. If you want to experience a hauntingly beautiful area of cypress skeletons, stumps, and knees in lakes that are considered the best freshwater sport and bass fishing in the nation, brace yourself with courage to boat in a graveyard of trees and explore. Nature photographers will find an oasis. Enjoy.