The Trip

February 18 – 24, 2006





“Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from God"

Kurt Vonnegut



We began at Sanibel Island, west of Fort Myers in the Gulf of Mexico and Ended east of Stuart in the Atlantic ocean at Port St. Lucie Inlet.  Distance was 160 miles.  We actually  crossed Lake Okeechobee (still can’t believe it) from Clewiston to Port Mayaca – a distance of just under 25 miles.  We had great weather every day except the last day.  The last day was overcast and very windy with gusts over 25 mph but we loved it and thought it was beautiful.


Below are maps, our original paddle plan with daily and culmulative miles (calculated – actual varied slightly longer), and a list of where we stayed and contact info.




Click on the map below to go to a “live” pdf picture where you can click along the waterway for more info on specific spots.  It links to a US Army Corps of Engineers site.  You can also get a lot of info (including the above) on the Okeechobee Waterway on this US Army Corps of Engineers site :


The Day 1, Day 2, etc. indicators on the map are where we were after kayaking the set distance for that day.  They mark where we spent the night.  On Day 5 we kayaked straight across Lake Okeechobee – not the “crooked” path that is recommended for boats as the waterway map below indicates.




Below is our paddle plan charted with daily (in green blocks)

and culmulative miles.



Here is contact info of places we stayed:


Note:  We found most of these by using and then zooming in on the area we were interested in and typing in “camping”, “motel”, “hotel” – start by going to and type in Ft Myers, FL.  Then you can click on the map and move it along the Okeechobee Waterway all the way to the east coast.  Zoom in/out as necessary.  Stop along the way and look for camp grounds, hotels, etc. by typing in the appropriate phrase.  Very cool and useful.  Used in congunction with to estimate mileage.


1)  Best Western 800 274-5511  13021 N. Cleveland Ave, Ft Myers, FL - bring AAA card for discount.

Great spot – sandy beach area and rooms very close to beach area.  They allowed us to chain the kayaks up

just outside our rooms – we recommend bringing locking devices for the entire trip for piece of mind.  Be sure to ask for ground floor and follow-up a few times before your trip to ensure the reservations are as expected.


2)  Caloosahatchee Regional Park 18500 North River Road, Alva, FL  33920  phone: 239 693-2690

Can make reservations on-line – look up the name in Google.


3)  Meadowlark Campground/RV park   near Ortona Lock  phone: 800-889-5636/863-675-2243


4)  Roland Martin's Marina,  Clewiston, FL   recommend staying in room vs campsite



5)  DuPuis Management area – 1-800-432-2045   Call for special permit to camp along river.  Watch for ant hills.  Also difficult to climb out of river – a 10 foot ledge.   There was an area on the north side of the St Lucie canal around 2 – 3 miles east of Lake Okeechobee and a mile west of Dupuis area that looked good for camping – an open area –no houses, etc but we don’t know who owns it.  May be okay to camp along river there if you don’t leave any traces…


6)  Port. St. Lucie Lock  make reservations through – cannot call it in.  RV sites fill up a year in advance but one tent site was available for us.