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Old 22-03-2013, 11:50   #1
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trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

I have a Hobie Adventure Island that I want to tow from Louisiana to the keys for a week of boat camping. I called the visitor center and they could not answer any of my questions. She did warn me of island that are off limits, but could not tell me which ones or how to know.

I need to know if there are any public or private boat launches that will allow me to park overnight/ multiple days.

I need to know if I can pitch a tent on an island when I get there. The commercial campgrounds are ridiculously expensive, so I am trying to avoid that.
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Old 22-03-2013, 14:26   #2
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

Don't know who you called, but John Pennekamp State Park along with dozens of others has a boat ramp.

In so far as camping, I would ask forgiveness, not ask permission. You should be fine pitchig a tent any place remote.

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Old 22-03-2013, 14:40   #3
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

I called the Key West visitor centor.

John Pennekamp State Park doesn't allow overnight parking.
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Old 22-03-2013, 15:22   #4
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

Bahia Honda state park has both camping and a boat ramp. Not sure if they have overnight parking at the ramp, but you could give them a call:

(305) 872-2353
36850 Overseas Highway
Big Pine Key, Florida 33043

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Old 22-03-2013, 16:03   #5
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

Also, if you don't mind starting farther north, Homestead Bayfront Park has overnight parking. I seem to recall that they require buying a season parking pass. . . . though I was looking for places to park while going off to the Bahamas for a couple of months, so I might've glossed over the daily and weekly rates.

Miami-Dade County - Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces - Homestead Bayfront Park
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Old 22-03-2013, 19:10   #6
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Depending on what you are looking for check out Everglades National Park. Launch Flamingo and hit Cape Sable, either go up the coast a little, or head down to Little Rabbit.

You can camp the Key and see what everyone sees, or spend a week in Everglades National Park and see things few people see, Hobie. AI's will work well back country.

PM if you want more info.


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Old 22-03-2013, 19:21   #7
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

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You can ----- spend a week in Everglades National Park and see things few people see ---
Including some truly voracious insect life if you go in the warmer months.
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Old 22-03-2013, 20:04   #8
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

I think I want to be as far out in the keys as I can be to experience the clearest cleanest water and the most isolated islands. I'd prefer not to be in a swamp, as I was raised in one in S. La. I am looking for an experience as close to the Caribbean as I can get.
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Old 22-03-2013, 21:01   #9
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

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I called the Key West visitor centor.

John Pennekamp State Park doesn't allow overnight parking.
Rent a slip and they will. I trailered a SJ21 there and got a slip and had a blast sailing the HAwk Channel and diving JP Park. Otherwise find a ramp. Launch the boat and go park the rig someplace you think might be safe from thieves. Maybe a Walmart parking lot. They'll let you park an rv for an overnight stay.
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Old 22-03-2013, 21:18   #10
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

Florida Keys Public Boat Ramps

This might help. As far as parking, did ya consider just parking at a hospital, or at a hotel/motel, even a big shopping center after ya drop the boat off? Get creative.

There's a bunch of mangrove islands just north of garrison bight in key west.
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Old 23-03-2013, 02:20   #11
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

How much was the slip?
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Old 23-03-2013, 06:44   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Madwand View Post
I think I want to be as far out in the keys as I can be to experience the clearest cleanest water and the most isolated islands. I'd prefer not to be in a swamp, as I was raised in one in S. La. I am looking for an experience as close to the Caribbean as I can get.
Take a look at the charts for cape sable area and south. Not a swamp, but like any primitive area can get buggy when the wind dies.
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Old 23-03-2013, 08:09   #13
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

The Marquesa keys, west of Key West would be great, but you cannot camp on them. Woman key, Man key, and Boca Grand key also no overnighting. I used to sail my hobie 16 to the Marquesa keys an camp out back in the seventies, but not allowed any more. I run a flats boat out of Key West and fish east and west of Key West and I can't really can't think of anywhere that would work for you. Most keys are just mangroves and it seems like any that have a beach are bird sanctuaries or private.
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Old 23-03-2013, 08:17   #14
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Re: trailer sailor camping in the Florida Keys

Looking at a map of John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, it seems like a landlocked lagoon, is this correct? I found out a mooring for $20/night would allow for parking, but can you actually go anywhere from there? It doesn't seem you can.

If there's nothing but mangroves further west, that would save me a couple hours of driving. But this is starting to look like I should just as soon stop at Perdido Key and save myself 12 hours of driving...
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Old 23-03-2013, 09:33   #15
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We stay at Pennekamp quite often. The mooring feels is nice and protected but there are two exits out of the area the main one being to the south but is a narrow winding river with rental boats zipping along and tall mangroves blocking the wind. A Hobie without a motor would not do well there.

Decent camping area and reasonable price to rent power boats for diving, snorkeling, and fishing.
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