Feb Ride-3a South

The Everglades are a BIG place, what we have left is over 670,000 acres in 3 counties, not including the Natl. Park. 3a South is the largest of the Conservation Areas. From Alligator Alley there are no roads or levees for over 25 miles south, and it is almost 25 miles wide. For those not familiar with the area, landmarks are not as easy to distinguish as some other places, this sawgrass and trees looks alot like that other sawgrass and trees. There are alot of Camps out there and they all belong to someone. We will not be stopping at any of these Camps without the owners permission. Some folks ain't exactly as social as others, if you know what I mean. Some of them have had things stolen or vandalized over the years, and some even have chains or cables blocking the entrance. Most of the Camps have very limited parking (3 or 4 boats). The ride that I have planned will cover about 60 miles. Remember to bring extra fuel.

This is a breakdown of each leg of the trip so those of you from out of town will have an idea what to expect.

(1) MM35 ramp to Andrews Ave - aprox. 3 miles
Right now the water is low. the first couple hundred yards going into the trail is very narrow and winding with limited visibility. PLEASE GO SLOW and always be aware of oncoming boat traffic. As you come out of the willows the trail will open up and then fork, stay to the left and follow the trail South to Andrews Ave.

(2) Andrews Ave to Holiday Trail - aprox. 8 miles
As we continue South and East you will see a treeline on your left, this is the levee for the Miami Canal and the clump of tall trees is Picnic Island. We will stop at the slough in front of Browns Camp.

(3) Holiday Trail West near Hawk Camp – aprox. 13 miles
This is the longest leg so you may want to grab 2 from the cooler before we leave. About a mile west of Browns Camp the Survey Trail forks, stay to the right and continue due West. As we go along we will pass by several Camps along the way. We will stop at a slough just North of Hawk Camp near the main trail.

(4) Hawk to the corner of Indian Land – aprox. 3 miles
The trail goes around several tree islands and goes Southwest to the posted corner of Indian Land. Signs clearly marked – NO TRESPASSING – We will stop here so everyone can see where NOT to go.

(5) Corner to Microwave Tower – aprox. 4 miles
We will follow the posted trail West on the Southern side of the Indian Land until we get into the cypress then go Southeast to the Microwave Tower at the edge of the Deep Water Canal.

(6) Tower to the Swimmin’ Hole – less than 1 mile
Looking at the Tower take the Deep Water Canal to the right and a little ways down you’ll see the Big Rocks at the Swimmin’ Hole. The ground behind the Big Rocks has lots of exposed rocks. The water by the Big Rocks is shallow and has large rocks just below the surface, GO VERY SLOW

(7) Swimmin’ Hole to the Hilton – aprox. 5 miles
Take the Deep Water Canal back by the Tower and follow the trail around to the right and go South through some of the most AWESOME Cypress Trails. I am pretty sure an 8’ wide boat will fit, I will try to keep us on the wider trails and out of trouble This is the back way to the Everglades Hilton. We will go just past it and then come around.

LUNCH at the Swimmin’ Hole

( 8 ) Hilton to the Tower – aprox. 4 miles
We’ll take the main trail from the Everglades Hilton back to the Microwave tower.

(9) Tower to the Corner of Indian Land – aprox. 4 miles
There are many different trails that run through the cypress near the Tower, I will try to take a different one back until we get to the Indian Land and the posted trail. From there we go East to the corner.

(10) Corner to Hawk – aprox. 3 miles
We will cut off the main trail and ride the secondary trail back around Duck Camp and to the slough near Hawk Camp

(11) Hawk to Bergerons – aprox. 7 miles
Leaving Hawk we will go North and East through wide open sawgrass trails. As we get closer to Bergerons Camp it starts to dry up, and there are sticky black mud patches and exposed rocks in some places. So be careful. We will stop in the slough just west of the camp.

(12) Bergerons Back to the MM35 Ramp – aprox. 6 miles
We should avoid the main trail that leaves and goes due East to Camp 9 ½, the water is very low and has exposed rocks especially near the heads.
Leaving Bergerons we will go North around the willows and then head back East towards Hippie Head and then around the cypress head and back to the Ramp-o-rama.
On this last leg the water is very low and the trails get skinny, REMEMBER as we get closer to the ramp this is the same narrow, winding trail with limited visibility that we started out on. PLEASE GO SLOW and always be aware of oncoming boat traffic, especially near the ramp.
pretty work on the ride...I think you have clearly defined a good days ride. Should the water stay at a reasonable level, gas may not be a problem at all...lots of skinny water. At the very least EVERYONE should bring along a jug for themselves, or for the guy who didn't calcualute enough for the ride. As a semi local, and knowing a few of the local camp owners......if you approach the camps in a nice manner, and do not act like a out of towner jerk, the reception at the door is usually a positive one. Some of the glades camp owners would rather nobody come out, or ever visit thier camps. But a positive experience with a group of out of town riders is better than some of the other surrounding counties/people who have vandalized camps over the years. Bring an extra can of food, or something like an extra bag of paper plates, toilet paper etc.
Do this, and your always welcomed back!
Ok well I am still learning how to judge fuel on this boat (I have been judging by run time) and just so I am not the one short on gas about how many hours actual run time should we expect :?:
I have a wedding to go to in Marco Island that weekend. That is also the same day as the fish fry/poker run at the Dade county club- Airboat Association off of Tamiami Trail. I guess I will be missing both..........
This should have just about everybody covered...

Directions for yall takin’ I-95 from up North…
I-95 South until you get to Jupiter. Then exit and go west ½ mile to the Turnpike (toll road) and keep on truckin South. You will go through Palm Beach County and past Glades Road (about 4 miles) you will exit onto the Sawgrass Expressway (toll road - 869). Go West and stay on the Sawgrass Expressway and the road will turn South. (When it does on the other side of the levee is the Everglades Area 2a) Continue South on the Sawgrass Expressway to the end and pay another toll. When you exit the toll plaza look for and follow the signs for I-75 North (to Naples). Continue on I-75 North (actually driving West) past us-27 to the Alligator Alley toll plaza (yes, another toll road). 10 miles West of the toll plaza is the MM 35 Rest Area. When you exit, follow the road (past the 1st boat ramp) around and under the bridge (past the 2nd boat ramp) and around to the stop sign. You will see the Rest Area on the right. Make the left (headed West) and go over the bridge and follow the road around to the 3rd boat ramp. On the Southwest side of the Ramp-o-Rama.

Directions for yall takin’ US-27 from up North…
27 South (past Okeechobee and Big Sugar) to I-75 North. Continue on I-75 North (actually driving West) to the Alligator Alley toll plaza (toll road). 10 miles West of the toll plaza is the MM 35 Rest Area. When you exit, follow the road (past the 1st boat ramp) around and under the bridge (past the 2nd boat ramp) and around to the stop sign. You will see the Rest Area on the right. Make the left (headed West) and go over the bridge and follow the road around to the 3rd boat ramp. On the Southwest side of the Ramp-o-Rama.

Directions for yall takin’ I-75 from the West coast…
I-75 South (past Naples) to Alligator Alley toll plaza. Continue on I-75 South (actually driving East) headed to Ft.Lauderdale. After you drive through the Big Cypress National Preserve. You will see the Indian Gas Station mm 49. Keep on driving East, about mm37 you will see the Rest Area. Take the 1st exit (before you get to the bridge) and go to the stop sign and turn right to the boat ramp on the Southwest side of the Ramp-o-Rama.

Plenty of parking for all.
and I’m tired of typing.
Feb 10 Saturday
Chance of showers. Highs in the low 70s and lows in the mid 60s.
High 73°F
Precip 40%
Wind: S 9 mph
Max. Humidity: 75%
UV Index: 4 Moderate
Sunrise: 7:01 AM ET
Overnight Low 65°F
Precip 60%
Wind: WNW 6 mph
Max. Humidity: 78%
Sunset: 6:11 PM ET
Quick question here....if you take Hwy 27 to Hwy 80 W to CR833 down to Big Cypress Indian Res. on down to I-75....is there any toll booths between MM41 (on ramp) and MM35? I came home that way once and can't remember. Call me a cheap bastard but if I can save a few dollars for a few miles of the alley.... :D
It appears to me that airboat4fun has done alot of work to put this ride together. I personally would like to thank him for all the work. Especially the directions cause my dumb a$$ would probably get lost without them.

No need to thank me just show up and have a good time with us. It's always more fun with friends. Speaking of more fun and friends, lets hear from those who plan to ride. Again I will ask who plans to ride for the day, what time do you want to get back to the ramp, who plans to stay for the sat. night ride, maybe do some froggin in the water we have left.

Now for the latest water update with 1 week to go. Bravo and I went out yesterday to test drive his boat (he just put on new poly and freshened her up, I thought it did real well).
The water is continuing to drop. There is still water in the main trail, but not much and the mud is starting to build up on the sides. Some of the mud patches are dry enough to start to sprout new grass on em. The only place I may see a problem is the last leg of the trip, from Bergerons back to the ramp. It is still dry around Bergerons and there were dry patches in the Governors Trail (the trail I wanted to come back on). We may need to take the trail back to Andrews ave and then the boat ramp. Either way it looks like there will enough water to do the run. I will be out Friday night and will let everybody know what it's like when we meet at the MM35 boat ramp Saturday morning.
Randy, I may be the wet blanket again regarding time. We have obligations back in Jupiter the require us to be of the water around 4. If this poses a problem for others, I understand and will try to make other arangements.


You can stay at our place in Jupiter if your time limit runs out on your Kitchen pass and you don't make it back in time :p
Lets not talk about wet blankets, I think Cntry and Stan have a story from the previous Glades run, Larry & the rest of the group had another.

Florida Cracker, That's exactly why I asked.
We can plan for it here instead of finding out while we are out there.
Anybody else.

I swear I won't tell the FWC, IRS, FBI, Americas Most Wanted, GreenPeace, your-EX, or anybody else where you are going to be that day.
I just want everybody to have a good time and get back safely.
Hay Randy you got an empty seat in that boat of yours I think I would like to come and take pictures if you have room
im gonna be there friday till sunday sometime , jdot threw me a grass rake togeather last fri night for the little boat so i wouldnt disapear under the saw grass i believe king an my nefhew are coming also jodys boys .gonna let my new grandsons get someseat time in the glades on the little boat the younger one hasnt drove it yet LOOK OUT!! his name is jacob if he ask to hold your gig i wont be responsable LONG STORY!!
Hey Sniper, I don't know if you helping the situation or adding to it :lol:, but I appreciate the offer (almost needed it after the last ride). Actually, my wife and 3 of my kids are hoping to go. However, that evening my daughter is hooking up with a girlfriend and my older daughter to head out of town. If my wife makes it down for the ride, it will be only her third time out. Her other two outing have not be near as long, I need to be careful not to overdo it with her, or she may not make another one. :cry:

BTW - it would be great if you can make it down. I'm sure if Randy doesn't have room, someone else will.