Everglades Kayak Journal
Feb 13-19, 2011

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Steve and I drove from Crystal River, FL to Everglades City. This is about 300 miles down the west coast of Florida. Everglades City is the western gateway of the Everglades National Park. We stay at the Ivey House Inn which seems to be the center for most people planning to do any kayak excursions into the Everglades. We arrange for the car shuttle and they tell us that the car will be waiting for us in Flamingo, the east entrance of the Everglades Park when we get there in a week.


We also spend time talking with the Park Rangers and reserving our campsites in the Park. The good thing is that campsites can NOT be reserved sooner than 24 hours of when you are planning to start your trip. In Chokoloskee we visit the historic Smallwood General Store which is now operated as a "museum". To really understand the early settler history of this area it is best to read Peter Matthiessen's book, "The Shadow Country". It is a fascinating story of Ed Watson and his brutal and hard life in the Everglades along the Chatham River. He terrorized his community and ultimately he was killed outside the Smallwood's store.



We also visit the Rod and Gun Club. An "Old World" historic Inn, lots of wood, a big fireplace in the lobby and pictures of the many celebrities who have stayed and fished, including several presidents.

We found a great tiki bar to eat and listen to some music, the Camellia Street Grill. After dinner I inventory my trip packing list once more to be sure that I have NOT forgotten anything that I will need, as there is NO chance of getting anything along the way during the next week and 80+ miles in the water.

Next Day