Gulf Islands National Seashore Superintendent Dan Brown announced today that the public is invited to join him for an End-to-End Seashore Paddle of the Florida District.
Superintendent Brown will lead a series of eight paddles, weather permitting, which begin on Saturday, April 19, 9:00 am at the canoe launch area near Rosamond Johnson Beach at Perdido Key Area and concludes at Okaloosa Island, East Pass access (south of Destin bridge). The paddle is segmented into eight consecutive days with varying degrees of length and difficulty. Participants may paddle the entire 58 mile length of the seashore or choose any number of the individual segments. Most days the paddle will begin at 9:00 am and on Easter Sunday the paddle will begin at 1:00 pm and conclude whenever the end is achieved.
Superintendent Brown encourages visitors to join him in exploring the often overlooked parts of the seashore and experience wildlife such as juvenile fish, blue crabs, flounder, sea stars, and dolphin which live in the sound. Bald eagles, osprey, and great blue herons may also be observed overhead.
Day 1: April 19, Johnson Beach canoe launch to Fort Pickens ferry pier – approx. 8.4 miles
Day 2: April 20, Fort Pickens ferry pier to Escambia County Park West – approx. 6.7 miles
Day 3: April 21, Escambia County Park West to Quietwater Beach – approx. 2.9 miles
Day 4: April 22, Quietwater Beach to Opal Beach North – approx. 11.6 miles
Day 5: April 23, Opal Beach North to Navarre Beach County Park (east of Navarre bridge) – approx. 7 mi.
Day 6: April 24, Navarre Beach County Park to Liza Jackson Park – approx. 14 miles
Day 7: April 25, Liza Jackson Park to Okaloosa Area – approx. 3.5 miles
Day 8: April 26, Okaloosa Area to East Pass access (south of Destin bridge) – approx. 3.5 miles
Participants should provide their own kayak or canoe, life jacket, paddle, sunscreen, hat sunglasses, drinking water, and lunch. A limited number of kayaks are available free of charge by reservation on a first come first severed basis, please call Susan Teel at 850-934-2618 or Steamer Lawhead at 850-934-2629. Participants will also need to provide their own transportation for each leg of the paddle so car-pooling is recommended. Depending on the weather, the daily segment of the paddle could be cancelled. Reservations are not required.
Superintendent Brown encourages everyone to enjoy the national seashore and join us for our ranger-led programs.