Secret Kayak Location - Florida Everglades KayakingSecret Kayak Location - Florida Everglades Kayaking

Unique and wild. That is one way to sum up the 10,000 Island Wilderness in Florida's Everglade National Park. This tropical location is one of the greatest US destinations for paddling! Located near the southwestern tip of the state one can enjoy a wide variety of local and exotic animals such as Alligators and tropical birds. This area also holds many rare tropical trees not found anywhere else in the US like Rainbow Eucalyptus and Plumeria. After a little sight seeing its time to get out for some exciting 10000 Island Wilderness kayaking.

Don't expect to go to this area and find thousands of islands awaiting your enjoyment. There are hundreds of them, but not thousands. Most of these are not suitable for camping or hanging out. There are a few islands, however, such as Tiger Key that have, over time, built up a sandy beach. Do your research if you plan to paddle overnight or visit an island for the day. Be sure its one that will be hospitable.

This is not a kayaking trip for those who lack navigation skills. Do to the many creeks, channels, and bays in this area, it is very easy to lose your way. Caution and planing is needed. Get a waterproof NOAA marine chart before leaving out on this Everglades kayaking trip. You will need a good chart that is waterproof. The regular paper charts tend to fall apart when they get wet. Also, you'll need a reliable compass. You would do well to have the navigational backup of a GPS unit as well. Naturally, you should know how to use all these navigational tools.

Chokoloskee Island is a great place to go for a day or weekend if you enjoy fishing, relaxing and everglades kayaking. When you want to enjoy some relaxation time on the island you can kick back and sink your pole into the water to catch a wide variety of fish. The island is big on relaxation and fishing, since they are blessed with redfish, tarpon, sea trout, snook, and many other types of fish. There are a plethora of paddling trails and multi-day canoe and kayak trips that can be explored and enjoyed in this area.

Make sure to have sunscreen on hand at all times since the sun can be extremely dangerous and lead to burns. You will also need to bring along hats, long sleeved shirts, pants, and other protective clothing for wear out in this sub-tropical environment as well. Since all the water in the area is saltwater, all you will have access to is what you bring with you. Everyone coming on your trip will need to bring a gallon of water per day spent in the area. Protect your water supplies from the raccoons. They will chew a hole through a plastic water container to get at the freshwater inside.

Other than winter months, sand flies and mosquitoes can be just as big of pests as the raccoons. Take lots of insect repellent. Be sure your mosquito netting bars the tiny sand flies as well as mosquitoes. If you go in the winter, this may not be as big of a concern.

The Ten Thousand Islands present many opportunities to explore some of the wildest areas Florida has to offer. Be sure you're in good physical shape for what could be a challenging canoe/kayak trip (depending on winds and tides), and know your wilderness navigation. You will be roughing it in some of the more natural and remote areas of the state. This is a great place to visit just be sure to have all your ducks in a row and do your homework. Get in shape and get ready to enjoy the wilds of Florida!
by David P Lee
References and Bibliography
When you can't be out exploring the tropics, keep a little piece of it at home. Create a tropical oasis with Plumeria. Find out the best way to enjoy Kayaking with a pedal kayak.
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