Everglades Exploration Network

Considering heading down to the Big Cypress this weekend and wondering about the water level. Thinking of possibly heading into the area south of 441. Maybe check out gator hook trail. Nothing set in stone. Thanks Dennis

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Water is high just about everywhere:

BCNP Water Stage Summary

Hydrograph for Roberts Lakes Strand

Bugs were minimal when I was down there earlier this month.

 How was your trip earlier this month Keith?  Where did you camp? Where did you hike?

Camped at Bear Island and didn't do much walking. Too much rain that week.

So if I am reading that correctly we would probably be hiking in about 2 feet of water the entire time. Maybe we would be better off doing a trip in the kayaks. Turner River maybe. Any suggestions? Looking to do something one day maybe staying the night.

Yea maybe a kayak would be better.

You could stay overnight at the Swamp Ape and paddle the Turner?

You could paddle down the Turner River, stay in Chokoloskee or Everglades City, and then either back up the Turner River or Halfway Creek (although it is a few miles from the Halfway Creek launch to the Turner launch). I stashed a bike for the ride back to get the car. It was a really nice trip on both rivers.

I think we are going to stick with hiking. Gonna drive down Saturday early and hike either gator hook or do some of the trail south of 441. We are not gonna stay the night. I have not got to do any hiking in Big Cypress in the summer yet.

Which part of the Florida Trail would you recommend going in from loop road or from Oasis? Would like to spend some time looking for orchids and anything else that might be in bloom.It will be interesting to see the swamp full instead of the normal winter look.

It will be wetter entering from Loop Road but the hike is more scenic in my opinion. Try to make it up to Robert's Lakes Strand (basically where the trail makes a turn towards the west) and you will be rewarded with very scenic interior swamp territory.  

I like the sounds of deer crashing through the water.  You could try the Busch Camp Trail off Loop Road. Its east of the Florida Trail and almost straight across from the old gated Pinelands Campground.  The trail goes northeast through several pineheads, across some cypress and ends in a small oak/cabbage head.  I think there is a story here about it if you search.

headed over to my friends to discuss the trip thanks for the suggestions.

We did a short trip in and out totaling 5 miles. The water was ankle deep as soon as we left Loop road.Found one dry patch big enough for one of us to stand on. Saw two gators laying on the road going in. It is so peaceful out in the swamp. I only wish it was closer so I could go more often.

One thing I must ask is what kind of shoes does everyone wear when tromping through the mud and water? I have switched to Vibram Five fingers most of the time but haven't got a pair for hiking yet. The weight of the shoes plus the mud and water are really noticeable after not wearing sneakers for almost 3 months.My pair of Vibrams weigh the same as one of the shoes I wore on Saturday. I ended up finishing the last mile barefoot. Thanks for any suggestions


I wear Vietnam military jungle boots with the water drain holes. They are sturdy, good in mud, good for climbing, light on the foot, water drains and they dry quickly. I have a friend that punched drain holes in soft work boots and he says they worked fine.


On occasion I wear rubber boots when the water is very cold and Im on a short walk/hunt but they are hard to climb trees. If they fill up with water, they are useless.


Sneakers may work but they dont last very long. I can get several years from a pair of jungle boots.


I dont think the Vibram Five Fingers would ever work for me but I never tried them.  What would happen if you stepped on a sharp stick or crossed pinnacle rock? I have had sharp sticks go right through my rubber boots when I used to wear them. Are they strong enough?  Is the sole thick enough?

Dennis McDonald said:

 One thing I must ask is what kind of shoes does everyone wear when tromping through the mud and water? 

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