Florida’s epic festival of dirt and horsepower goes down at Redneck Mud Park

A shirtless senior with red-leather skin tugged at my sleeve to get my attention. He was sitting backward on his ATV. The old man wrapped his bony hands around the handlebars and kicked his feet up as his head swung down. Completely inverted, head to seat, feet to sky, he twisted the throttle and rode away. Someone shouted from behind me, “Oh, he’s been doing that here for years.”

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.hagerty.com/articles-videos/articles/2020/03/26/floridas-epic-festival-of-dirt-and-horsepower

What the author calls a “pontoon truck” is actually a “swamp buggy” a type of home-built vehicle developed just after WWII. They were very popular in the Florida Everglades Swamp and predated the air boat by a decade or so. My first ride in (on) a swamp buggy was in the Everglades on the way to a plane crash site. It was the end of the dry season (May or thereabouts) and the ground was mostly mud and marl with a few waterholes, but we were elevated on the deck of the “buggy” to a level above that of the saw grass, so the visibility was great. It was quite a ride, and I can understand why they are popular even today.