Everglades NP Questions

I’m planning to paddle the Turner River Canoe Trail in the Everglades.

I’ve got a Old Town Canoe 16’ Camper. I’d like to stay out of waves and away from power boats as much as possible.

Anyone ever cut through Cross Bays to the Sunday Bay Chickee?

Looks do-able, but it’s not marked as a canoe trail on any map I’ve seen. It should be a rising tide when I go through there.

can do it. please don’t limit yourself to just the wilderness waterway. if you can use a chart and compass and/or gps you’ll be able to put together endless routes in the ten thousand islands. i’ve been the route you ask about and would recommend it on a rising tide. a great place to paddle.

The Sunday Bay chickee no longer

– Last Updated: Dec-08-11 12:45 PM EST –

exists. It has been replaced by a chickee at Crooked Creek. That ought to solve the access problem when the north wind blows the water out of the top of Sunday Bay.

Yes I have done Cross Creek a couple of times. You have to occasionally share with powerboaters but they prefer not to go that way and risk grounding. The Turner River is good for canoeing. I have not seen a powerboater until you get south of Left Hand Turner River. Some days the launch off the Tamiami Trail gets crowded.

Yes it is marked as a canoe trail. See here


Great info. Thanks!
Great info. Thanks!

After posting the original message, I consulted my guide book “Paddlers Guide to the Everglades National Park” by John Molloy, and found the appropriate route.

And yes, I did start out planning to do the 99 Mile Wilderness Trail, but quickly decided to plan a trip more enjoyable for a canoeist.

I don’t have the NOAA charts yet, as I’m still picking my route at a high level. Will purchase when I get there.

I’m pretty good with a map and a compass, but this will be my first wilderness trip in the Everglades. I would also like to venture down to The Watson Place campground before making a return trip via the Lopez River Campground.

Any recent intel on either of those places?

Bobcat at Watson
Its a big grassy area. A favorite of raccoons too. You can rummage in the woods for relics of Old Man Watsons farm machinery but there are a lot of bugs in there too.

Also Lopez is not quite a campground. There is a limit of 3 parties and as its so close to EC you are guaranteed neighbors. Lopez does not have nearly the moving around opportunities Watson does.


A good forum for Glades paddlers


Just returned
I just returned from the Everglades.

We camped for free the night before our departure at Burns Lake campground about 20 minutes down the road from Everglades City.

I dropped my paddling partner off at the Turner River Canoe access point, drove over to EC where I had pre-arranged a Shuttle driver through Craigslist to take me back to our boat.

The Turner River Canoe Trail was pretty cool for me, as I was in the rear of the canoe. I found path finding through the maze of mangroves to be a fun challenge. My paddling partner on the other hand took at least 100 spider webs to the face, and got 5 of them in his mouth.

Stayed the night on the Crooked Creek Chickee and saw pods of dolphins during the day, and had them “Blow past” our Chickee that night.

There was a small craft advisory in effect, with 16 to 21 MPH winds while we were there, which freaked out my novice paddling partner, and by the time we were half way across Sunday Bay, he was spent.

I figured I’d had a good taste of what the Everglades was like and would be better able to plan a solo trip at a future date, so we turned it around and paddled to our car at EC via the Lopez River and the Causeway Route.

We caught a couple of fish, and saw a whole bunch of wildlife.

Good Times!

Thanks for everyone’s responses and pointers.


Sounds like you had fun
and windy winter has arrived in the Everglades. I may be going next month.

It would be cool to have as a toy an anemometer there.

A word to the wise on the Turner river
Check with the ranger station on the water level prior to your trip.

The river is tidal influenced all the way up to the Tamiami trail launch, and in low water years if you hit the wrong tide, you might end up pulling your canoe through some of the mangrove tunnels in mud. Over the past thirty years, it has happened to me twice and on one of them I had to convince mama gator to move out of the way so I could pass by

Jack L