Everglades National Park - open?

With a booking on Monday down at Flamingo I contacted the Park this morning to find out if they're closed. As of 9Am this morning (Saturday) the gates are open -but any facilities might only be partially functioning... That means we'll be able to access the ramps down at Flamingo.
Since communications with Park officials are always sketchy (understatement) I'll re-check this tomorrow afternoon find out what the situation is then..... and post it here as an update.
Tight Lines
Bob LeMay
(954) 435-5666

Replies

  • Lake-LinkerLake-Linker Posts: 55 Greenhorn
    Last year as the shutdown loomed I  tried to get as much info as possible as I'd planned on being there the morning of the shutdown....Best info I could get was that gates would be open (they can't just kick everyone out of the campgrounds) but that facilities would be closed. Showers were specifically mentioned. Possibly toilets....and with no enforcement personnel,I KNOW what campgrounds can become. I passed.

    Sounded like ramps would be open...I'd assume this year too.
  • ReverendoReverendo SoFlPosts: 3 Greenhorn
    I heard January 1 was floated as a date that Nat'l Parks might close... 
    Subscribed...
  • FishnTimFishnTim Posts: 9 Greenhorn
    Thanks Bob!
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,066 Captain
    You'd think that as a permitted guide in the Park (in my 23rd year...) that the Park would notify us of whatever they plan to do... Au contraire, mon frere... We're usually the last to hear.  Wish it weren't so.

    As promised I'll call later today and find out if anything's changed.
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,066 Captain
    Go to Nps.gov for further info on status of parks down here in south Florida.  According to what they’ve posted Flamingo will remain open but with little or no amenities.  I’ll post an update as needed-and will be down there myself in a few hours...
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • bodaciousbodacious Posts: 13 Greenhorn
    i don't know about the offices. but gates open and plenty of people on canoes. rangers also on boats. this was yesterday afternoon.
  • StalkintailStalkintail Posts: 1 Greenhorn
    Can you still get back country camping permits?  We are planning trip for the first part of Jan.
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,066 Captain
    Was there yesterday.... Although the Park is closed and the things you need the Park for (backcountry campsites, visitor's center, etc.) are closed down.... The gates are open and you're free to run down to Flamingo and launch (at least for now...).   The good news is that most of the services provided down at Flamingo aren't provided by the Park - they're provided by the concessionaire - and they're running full steam... The boat rentals are up, the tour boats are going strong,  the marina store and gas pumps are in operation, etc.  I didn't ask about the campground so that you'll have to find out on your own... I did make a point of checking in with the marina store to verify what I observed and learned their new phone number (the one I had was discontinued...).  Here's the number they provided... (352) 701-6581.  I imagine that they'll either provide the phone number for the campground or simply let you know whether it's open and how to get reservations (?)....

    Now for the downside... Every year I'm surprised when a normally sleepy, quiet place like Flamingo gets busy -really busy, with tourists from all over the world... and that's what's happening now.  There must have been a dozen paddle craft in Buttonwood canal yesterday afternoon.... so expect crowds until after New Year (and the same crowds every Saturday/Sunday...).

    The good news is that the backcountry was almost empty yesterday.... yeah, I'm spoiled...
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • tarponhuntertarponhunter Posts: 303 Deckhand
    Thanks for the update captain! Merry Christmas and also I sent you a message with a question about the bc
  • JWTJWT Posts: 426 Deckhand
    the marina is open & in full stride. it was like visiting the mall yesterday! lots of canoes & paddlers making B'wood a slow ride. good to see so many people enjoying the park. people won't fight & protect it if they don't know about it, so i have to say its a good thing. campgrounds are open & the entrance booth was manned when i drove thru. the bayside campground is closed. they have a lot of structural material stacked in there for months. looks like they are building some semi-permanent (like anything there isn't :) ) camp tent things. again..........


  • Captain BackyardCaptain Backyard Posts: 435 Deckhand
    JWT said:
    the marina is open & in full stride. it was like visiting the mall yesterday! lots of canoes & paddlers making B'wood a slow ride. good to see so many people enjoying the park. people won't fight & protect it if they don't know about it, so i have to say its a good thing. campgrounds are open & the entrance booth was manned when i drove thru. the bayside campground is closed. they have a lot of structural material stacked in there for months. looks like they are building some semi-permanent (like anything there isn't :) ) camp tent things. again..........

    Yes they are building 20 eco tents. 

  • Captain BackyardCaptain Backyard Posts: 435 Deckhand
    As well as 24 cottages and a restaurant in a little over a year.
  • gladesrunnergladesrunner Posts: 119 Deckhand
    Was there on Sunday and I did see at least one Ranger Patrol boat out front stopping boats as they went by the twin markers at the south entrance to the marina channel.........

    Water quality was horrific out front, although we did find a couple concentrations of fish for the kids to play with. Mostly 17-18" reds. Was in the bay boat so stuck to the edges of the flats, but water was the color of Yoohoo from Tin Can to the Cape to south of Man-o-War.....

    Hope everyone is enjoying the Holidays with friends and family!
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,066 Captain
    Was there yesterday (the 26th) and happy to report that the waters along the Gulf coast have finally cleared up a bit (as noted above it was still pretty bad on the 24th...  Both inside and outside we caught and released (mostly) trout, reds, and snook.  We did keep a couple of reds for the table - here they are...

    21" redfish from inside Whitewater Bay- note the dark red brown coloration... Angler was Andrew Wittenauer


    Here's David Wittenauer with an outside redfish... I was fishing aboard their very nice Shearwater that day...
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • JWTJWT Posts: 426 Deckhand
    where are they planning on putting the cottages? probably where the old hotel was i am thinking........  it would be nice if they fixed the old resturaunt but that building may be shot. the one that used to be in there was very nice. people would drive down from Miami to have dinner on the bay & watch the sunset.
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,066 Captain
    I don't know exactly where the cabins (or cottages) will be when the concessionaire installs them... Before Flamingo got wiped out in 2005, the marina and small store was up and going strong with the restaurant just south (that two story building that's still standing...).  About 300 yards west of the restaurant was the motel (not much to look at - a basic 1960's cheap motel structure...).  About a half mile west were the cabins, then another half mile west the campground...

    After everything was flooded and/or trashed -the only things ever brought back on line were the marina with general store and the campgrounds....  We went to meetings off and on for two or three years to plan the restoration - then after all the yelling and pounding on the tables from all concerned - the National Park Service chose not to replace anything... and that's where we've been since then...  All of the facilities down there are run by a concessionaire under contract and apparently the new outfit really plans on doing some investment (hopefully...).

    I'm looking forward to see what they do.  I've been told that both cabins (or cottages) and "eco-tents"  or "yurts" are planned.  We'll see...

    The Park is my favorite place in this world - but you'll only see me there when I'm booked generally....
    Hope this helps.
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
Sign In or Register to comment.