Traversing the Everglades on the desolate Tamiami Trail, the drive through the endless sawgrass marsh towards Shark Valley might initially make you question why you left the sandy, sun-drunk surface of Florida’s southernmost beaches to seek out something more... primal than yet another thong-wielding tourist. But when, not a two-minute walk from the sanctity of the visitor center parking lot, you find yourself mere feet away from one of nature’s most ancient and deadly creatures, the American alligator, it's clear that these are the Florida photos your friends don’t have. Untamed avian and reptilian wonders abound. Be sure to pack plenty of water, an above-average amount of common sense, and a camera—with a telephoto lens. Welcome, friends, to the unfriendliest grin on earth.