My wife and I will be driving down from southern Illinois with the goal of camping for 2 nights on Dallus Creek to celebrate our 10-year wedding anniversary just after New Years. One of our first trips together was camping on the Gulf down in the 10,000 Islands and we both miss living in FL very much. I am a "planner", so I have been poring over paddling guides, maps, charts, fishing reports, and anything that I can find about the area. I have already figured out that we will want to do the trip from the ramp to the campsite near the mouth during high tide to save ourselves a lot of dragging. I plan to arrive near peak high and ride the tide out, and also plan to head back to the ramp just before peak high to ride it in, assuming that the times are fairly close to those for nearby stations like Steinhatchee. I also already booked the campsite for both nights through the FWC.
We will likely be taking my 16' fiberglass canoe, assuming that we shouldn't encounter much for wave action other than outside the mouth of the creek and from boat wakes. Sounds like there may be a lot of boat traffic, so I'll likely rig up a flag or something since the canoe is flat black. Life jackets while in the canoe of course. I will put the fishfinder and an anchor in the canoe so we can find deep holes if it is cold. Will bring some soft plastics on jigs and some sinking plugs. We will likely also bring waders to walk around and fish the shallows if it's not man-eating mud.
My wife is a geologist who is always interested in checking out the critters in the seagrass beds, and I majored in marine biology, so I'm sure we'll be nerding out in the shallows too. Not living near the ocean is a drag. I am currently doing my graduate work in wildlife with a focus on birds, and she also enjoys birding, so we will also likely try to paddle around to find some birds. I'll have the camera in a Pelican case for scenery and wildlife.
I will be bringing a PLB, plenty of warm gear in dry bags, thermacells if it looks like it will be above 50 degrees, and other boating/camping safety gear. I'm really excited to get down there and enjoy some time on the coast, even if it is right in the middle of duck season up here There's just something about the ocean that is hard to beat!
If anyone sees anything that I have really wrong in my plan, I'd appreciate your feedback. I am not trying to get fishing spots, as I know that's not cool. Rather, just trying to make sure that I don't take my wife down there and get us in a bad spot somehow. Please PM me or email me at email@example.com if you'd rather do it that way.