Friday, December 30, 2011

Driving on the Beach

We took a ride over to Port St. Joe today to get a permit to drive on the beach in Gulf County. It was a gorgeous day for a ride and for spending time at the beach!
at Cape San Blas

the permit (good for one year)

This picture below shows (in green) the beaches you can drive on. The dotted line between the two sections is closed during turtle nesting season (May 1- October 31) but open the rest of the year. Note on the map all the sections in white are water. (It feels to me like they should be blue not white! The land is pink.)
from the Gulf County forms page
We drove first on the southern beach at Indian Pass (at the bottom of the map). We went straight down CR 30 from St. Joe to the first beach access point and headed right (west) with the idea that we might be able to drive around to Cape San Blas (on the west side of the peninsula).

This part of the beach is not developed - very few houses even. There are more houses if you head to the left. We saw a few other Jeeps, a few people out walking their dogs, and some people riding horses. 

Here's my view from the back seat:

We drove into the turtle nesting area but right after rounding the bend at the tip, the path was obstructed by big pieces of driftwood (some of them looked like whole trees). We turned around and headed over to Cape San Blas to check out that side. We drove down the beach a couple miles and then stopped to take a walk and have our picnic. We pretty much had the beach to ourselves:

We could not have asked for nicer weather - it was 71 and sunny! Crazy for December 30th. The sand was warm enough to go barefoot (which of course I did). After our picnic (turkey sandwiches, hardboiled eggs and pirate booty), we packed up and headed home. Here's the view from the driver's seat:
We're looking forward to more adventures driving on the beach this year!

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