We Start our Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddle: Day 1, Perdido Pass, AL to Big Lagoon State Park FL 2.13.18

Hooray! We’ve begun! What a gorgeous day to start our three-month sea kayaking paddle to Key West, Florida, along the Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail. My 90-year-old dad and his wife Sara launched us this morning near their beachfront condo in Orange Beach, Alabama. So we paddled 8.5 nautical miles (nm) today to get us to the starting point, technically, of the trail at Big Lagoon State Park, FL. Two months ago today we left our home in Nicaragua. Our son Cliff graduated from college in Colorado and then we had a family reunion over the holidays in Orange Beach. …

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Final Florida CT Paddle Trip Preparations

Tuesday, February 13 is our launch day. We’re launching from right behind my dad’s beach-side vacation condo in Orange Beach, Alabama and paddling 7 nautical miles to Big Lagoon State Park, Florida, which is the official start of the Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail. We’d planned to start a few days ago but the weather forecast looked crappy and sure enough it’s been rain, wind, and lightning all weekend. Tuesday morning looks like the start of some better weather. Dang I just looked at the current forecast (see photo below). We’ll keep our fingers crossed for Tuesday!We’ve spent the week …

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Day 5 Final Reconnaissance of CT

Day 5 Final Reconnaissance. We made it back to my dad’s and Sara’s beach condo in time for the Super Bowl game yesterday. But first the day started with rain and wind and fog and cold at camp. We lowered our pop top and got back at it: John behind the wheel of our truck/camper and me at command central in the passenger seat with three mini computers (aka 2 iphones and 1 ipad mini), a road atlas, guide book and maps. Having a choice to make as to whether we paddle the outer coast or the intracoastal waterway in …

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Day 4 Reconnaissance of our upcoming Florida CT Paddle

Day 4 Reconnaissance of our upcoming Florida CT (Circumnavigational Trail) paddling trip. With only one day more of reconnaissance left to go before we arrive at my Dad and Sara’s condo on the Alabama coast (aka Our Staging Ground), today started with a shopping spree at Tallahassee’s Costco and neighboring Super Walmart for some hard-to-find grocery items (Via coffees, Coffee mate 2Go, packaged chicken, flavored tuna packages, instant green teas and Arny Palmer’s) which we’ll include in the boxes my Dad and Sara will be shipping to 5 post offices c/o General Delivery for us along the route.   Then, …

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Day 3 Reconnaissance of CT trail

Day 3 Reconnaissance of CT trail (Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail) which we plan to start paddling next week. Today we finished scouting the Big Bend section of the Florida Gulf Coast. We: located the market, hardware (fuel) store, landing and friendly motel (which does laundry!) in Steinhatchee (they even have a two-bedroom cottage right on the river if anyone wants to join us!), found the dock, bathrooms and the supposedly primitive kayak campsite at the remote Econfina State Park (at least the one the campground gal pointed out to us, but it’s different than the one described in the …

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Day 2 of CT Reconnaissance

Day 2 of our reconnaissance research for our upcoming Florida Circumnavigational Trail (CT) paddling trip took us pass Manatee Springs State Park, where John got to see his first Manatees. It also took us to the remote tiny village of Horseshoe Beach in the Big Bend section of Florida. We’re camped at a tiny public campground with restrooms and cold showers but no drinkable water, right on the water, which was really nice and wasn’t mentioned in the guide book as anything more than a rest stop (if in fact the rest stop they mention is one and the same …

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Let the Florida CT Paddle Planning Get Real!

Let the Planning Get Real! For our upcoming next grand adventure that is: paddling the Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail (referred to in the future as the CT)! Yes, finally after an unusually cold December and January the weather trend here in Florida is warming. And our logistical planning for this trip we’d originally hoped to begin in late December after Cliff’s graduation and our Christmas family reunion kicks into higher gear.   The full 1,515 mile circumnavigation from the Alabama border on the Gulf to the Georgia border on the Atlantic takes at least 4 months. The prime paddling …

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