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Everglades NP Post-hurricane Paddlecraft Access
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Author:  RangerTim [ Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Everglades NP Post-hurricane Paddlecraft Access

Eveglades NP Post-hurricane Paddlecraft Access

Everglades NP was hit pretty hard by Hurricane Irma on September 10 of this year. A possible long-term impact is to paddlecraft access. As of this writing all backcountry campsites (beaches, chickees, and ground sites) are closed until further notice. The Flamingo Campground is closed until further notice.

As of this writing, paddlecraft can be launched from the Flamingo Marina. Howver, no facilities are open and no fresh water is available. The launch area next to the park's Everglades City visitor center is closed until further notice. I am unsure of the status of other park launch sites.

Until the Flamingo campground is opened, at least to dry camping, Flamingo Marina access is of limited use due to the 45-mile distance to lodging. I am particularly concerned that the launch area adjacent to the Everglades City Visitor Center will be used for construction staging during the rebuiliding of the Visitor Center. That could delay access for years.

I have written Superintendent Pedro Ramos to advocate for access as soon as possible. Other users of the waters of the Everlgades may want to do the same.

Author:  RangerTim [ Tue Nov 07, 2017 5:13 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Everglades NP Post-hurricane Paddlecraft Access

Everglades superintendent Pedro Ramos responded quickly to my email:

Hi Tim,

We are in the process of securing the (Everglades City) VIsitor Center building with fencing and once that is done, access to the launch will be open. Hoping this will be done inside the next couple of weeks. Waters are open however, so if you can put in elsewhere, you may enter the park waters. We will make every effort to maintain the access at the launch through our recovery process.

Regarding Flamingo, we are hard at work and hope to have the camp sites available as soon as possible. Don’t have an estimate of time on this one right now but we are working hard to make sure visitors have camping spots this season.

Thank you for the message and best regards!


Pedro Ramos


Everglades and Dry Tortugas National Parks


On Nov 7, 2017, at 12:25 PM, Tim wrote:


Superintendent Pedro Ramos
Everglades National Park

Dear Superintendent Ramos:

I laud the efforts thus far toward restoring visitor access to Everglades National Park.  I am writing to make a particular request in that regard.  

I am a longtime paddlecraft user of Everglades National Park, both from Flamingo and Everglades City.  I am asking that paddlecraft access be opened as soon as possible.  I and many other paddlers need no facilities, just access.  

As you know, in Flamingo that access is already available from the marina. However, without at least dry camping in the campground that access is of limited use due the distance from camping and lodging. 

In Everglades City paddlecraft access would be the traditional access adjacent to the visitor center.  As of this writing that access is closed until further notice. My fear for Everglades City access is that the traditional paddlecraft launch will be used as a staging area for recovery projects, denying access for months or even years.
Any additional kayak/canoe access (Turner River, 9-Mile Pond, Hell's Bay, Noble Hammock, West Lake, and Coot Bay Pond) would be great, but the two access points mentioned earlier would be best.

Thank you for your attention, Superintendent Ramos.  I would greatly appreciate a reply outling plans to restore paddlecraft access.


Timothy L. Downey

Author:  gbellware [ Tue Nov 07, 2017 10:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Everglades NP Post-hurricane Paddlecraft Access


Thanks for the update and for your deft advocacy, it is so much appreciated. I look forward to seeing you guys soon in Florida,


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