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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been camping in the Everglades for a few years now but I have never visited any of the beach sites. I am camping out of a skiff and was wondering which beach sites are the easiest to access by boat?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
they are easy to access via skiff, plan with the tides.
but you will have to register to camp.
Thank you. Yes I am aware of the camping permits. I specifically wanted to know about Highland Beach. I did notice that there was going to be about a 3ft tide swing when i am planing to go and if that would make it hard to beach a boat (7" draft). Also my buddy will have a a bigger boat that drafts 12-14" and was worried about him.
 

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I had a friend get stranded on Highland many years ago. Anchored the boat, set up camp, tide went out and grounded the boat. Onshore wind came up and held the tide up from coming full in, for two days. I’ve camped at East Cape plentyof times, deeper water is closer by. You still need to keep a weather eye out. It can get serious quick.
 

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Had the same thing happen to me as a kid when camping on panther key. Ended up cutting some small logs and used them to roll my boat to the water. Short pieces of 1.5” or 2” pvc work well too
 

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I usually find myself at New Turkey Key, plenty of water to deal with the tides on the north east shore. Set up a stern anchor and keep the bow in a few feet of water and you'll be golden.
Pavillion key has a pretty good beach on the east shore, not too sure about the depth there though.
Been there in my 21' Master Angler with no problem, just go slow if you dont know where youre going ;)
 

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Graveyard Creek has a campsite on the ground at the western side of the creek at the entrance... At low tide the creek is well protected by several oyster bars so look for them -but you've not likely to get dry stranded...

As already noted about all the beaches on the west side of the 'glades between Lostman's and Cape Sable - be very cautious about wind direction there.. if the wind starts blowing out of the west (or southwest or northwest) you may not be able to leave your boat there, since the entire shoreline will shift on you, pull your craft's anchor setup and push your hull up onto the beach and proceed to fill it with sand and pretty much bury it... Usually at this point someone will trot out some photos of nice skiffs - pretty much buried in sand - not a pretty picture at all...
 

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A few/several years ago there was a photo, thought it was here maybe FS, of a couple guys who beached their flats boat to camp.. weather got the best of them and they woke up with the boat pretty much burried in sand.
 

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Graveyard Creek has a campsite on the ground at the western side of the creek at the entrance... At low tide the creek is well protected by several oyster bars so look for them -but you've not likely to get dry stranded...

As already noted about all the beaches on the west side of the 'glades between Lostman's and Cape Sable - be very cautious about wind direction there.. if the wind starts blowing out of the west (or southwest or northwest) you may not be able to leave your boat there, since the entire shoreline will shift on you, pull your craft's anchor setup and push your hull up onto the beach and proceed to fill it with sand and pretty much bury it... Usually at this point someone will trot out some photos of nice skiffs - pretty much buried in sand - not a pretty picture at all...
I remember those pictures!
 

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I have been camping in the Everglades for a few years now but I have never visited any of the beach sites. I am camping out of a skiff and was wondering which beach sites are the easiest to access by boat?
I really like Picnic Key. There's a nice elevated white sand beach and you can tie up on the inside away from any wind or weather. The channel between Picnic and Tiger keys is deep--fun to sit by the fire at night, have a beer or two, and soak a bait for big sharks! Easy access to lots of good fishing spots.
 

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I would anchor up on the Lee in a couple feet of water after you unload.

Also graveyard creek has really bad no see ums, I camped there last year in early April.
Just make sure you use wind finder and have your tides right.

When I pulled up, I unloaded my stuff and almost got stuck, I was only sitting there for maybe ten minutes.

I don’t know the name of the area but if you go northwest of grave yard creek about 2 miles there’s a creek with some big sand bars. There’s less bugs there.
 
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Enjoyed re-reading this old thread...

That area northwest of Graveyard? That's the Harney river ( and for a mile or so every opening you see is part of the Harney system...). When we're fishing the coast instead of the interior that's one of several areas you might find me -somewhere between Graveyard Creek and Highland Beach when I'm fishing out of Flamingo. Most days when I'm up that way, the only other boats I see have come from the other end of the Park (Chokoloskee or Everglades City...).
 

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Enjoyed re-reading this old thread...

That area northwest of Graveyard? That's the Harney river ( and for a mile or so every opening you see is part of the Harney system...). When we're fishing the coast instead of the interior that's one of several areas you might find me -somewhere between Graveyard Creek and Highland Beach when I'm fishing out of Flamingo. Most days when I'm up that way, the only other boats I see have come from the other end of the Park (Chokoloskee or Everglades City...).
It is something to see "Feeding Time at The Harney"
I usually end up there sometimes after a day in Tarpon Bay.
 
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