Cedar Key

This is a neat area to canoe. There are numerous small estuaries leading back from the bay. The East Pass of the Suwannee River enters the gulf just north of Cedar Key and would be fun to explore, as it is totally undeveloped. This is a fisherman's paradise, and a lot of them use air boats, which are noisy, and can be dangerous if the operator isn't paying attention to where he is going. Because it is so far out of the normal tourist traffic, you can still experience solitude along this section of the coast.

One Monday I joined my son Michael, Larry Page, and Gene Talley at the small county campground north of Cedar Key, and the four of us paddled out to Deer Island. For five hours, we enjoyed Florida as it was. The only footprints on the sand were ours. The gulf stretched out to the horizon, sparkling blue. No traffic noise, no jet skis, no 'no trespassing' signs. We explored the woods on Dog Island and found some great places to camp in cooler weather. We walked the beach, and each of us played our own role of Robinson Crusoe. It was great.

We paddled around the north end of Dog Island, stopping to check out the exposed section of the shell mound where the tides were slowly changing the shape of the island. There is no beach on the inshore side of the island, but we disturbed a bald eagle, and watched him fly to a perch in a higher tree.

We continued to paddle down the gulf-side of a chain of islands that stretch towards Cedar Key, and then headed back through a very shallow water area to the campground. If you aren't careful, the tides can catch you and strand you in the middle of a mile of mud flats till the next tide.

National Weather Service Live Buoy Report

Wee Lassies take a break off Ceder Key.
Quite a few of us paddled to the key off Cedar Key
during a joint canoe/sailboat weekend.


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