EVERGLADES CRUISING INFORMATION - SHARK RIVER, TARPON BAY
(Don't NOT use this as your sole reference to Navigation. As the Captain, YOU are responsible for Navigation)
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VIEW the bottom of this page for some Satellite Photos of Shark River & Tarpon Bay.
This is so far into the everglades that nothing works - phones or TV. VHF will still reach to Flamingo. Remember a Florida fishing license if you’re catfishing with us. We’ll be anchoring. A dinghy is very useful, but someone can shuttle you between boats if you don’t have one. There are no facilities and no docks. Be self sufficient. Some of us raft up in 3-4 boat rafts depending on size of boats and weather. Always be prepared to break a raft - even at night - in case the weather gets bad in order to prevent the raft from breaking loose and drifting. If it does get stormy then a posted watch isn’t a bad idea. Holding is generally good in the bay, but there are some boulders/rocks reported. The Bay is generally calm. There are fishing boats around during the daytime, and some primitive campsites scattered here and there. DO NOT SWIM IN THE BAY - because of Alligators. Crabbing and Catfishing are excellent.
Activity: Mosquitos should be under reasonable control in Jan-Feb, but bring bug spray. (Go inside at dusk) They usually come out at dusk for an hour or two, then we can come back out if you don't turn on lights. Catch freshwater catfish and crabs. Gunkholing is good in dinghies. Handheld radios are worthwhile. Exploring in dinghies is fun.
Charts: The Little Shark River chart is #39 Waterproof Chart (or #11432 gov’t chart). Marathon area is #11451 ). #11433 covers the waters off Cape Sable, and # 11450 is the entire area from the Keys to Little Shark River.
Navigation from Marathon: Once we clear the shoals around Marathon (John Sawyer bank is last one if leaving from Fanny Keys), we head up to just west of Cape Sable. The heading from just off Fanny Keys is roughly 351 magnetic. This first waypoint off Cape Sable will be
25 12.780N 081 13.820W - 2 miles West of R4 buoy, staying about 3 miles offshore to stay in 10 feet of water. Then you shoot for the Little Shark Rvr approach at 25 19.110N 081 10.200W which is 3/4 mi off the river. The entrance daymark (G1) to the river is 25 19.327N
081 09.222W. Go straight in, don’t cut the corner. You can carry 6’ up the river and 7-8’ or more at anchor at low tide. Tide is about 2 feet in the river.
This is Cane Patch Hammock - one of the Hammocks
throughout the Everglades. It's a photo of one of our
2001 Power Squadron trips. All of these people fit into
4-5 dinghies. It was about a 6 nm ride by dinghy for
us to this patch of ground - saw LOTS of alligators
along the way. This patch has a couple of fire rings
for campsites and a small dock to pull up. It sits
alongside one of the alligator ponds here in the
Everglades. Banana trees - Papayas - and lots of
tropical foliage. This small patch of ground even has
one of the NOAA Geodetic markers here!
(YES - for those that have never been into the
Everglades - there ARE places where you can stand
up and walk around! - Even Picnic!)
Little Shark River Entrance. 3 Meter Satellite View. You can see a boat anchored in the bend to port as you enter the river.
When we meet as groups to go up the river together, we'll frequently meet here in this small bend until all boats have arrived.
TARPON BAY - to the right in this photo. North Harney River goes off to the left. North is up. Shark River comes in from below (south)
16 meter Satellite resolution