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Latest update: Dec. 2015

Halfway Creek... Big Cypress to The Everglades

Halfway Creek Paddling Trail runs for 7.3 miles from the Big Cypress Welcome Center on US41 to the Gulf Coast Visitor Center in Everglades City. A separate loop adds 3.7 miles. A portion of the trail goes through narrow mangrove tunnels that require some dexterity to navigate, bring a short paddle or one that can be broken down. Trail markers ("HC" and "L") along both the main trail and loop are a benefit as it would be easy to get lost in the mangrove, trail maps are available from the outfitter or at the Welcome Center. (Detailed map and photos below.)

Paddle Everglades, Halfway Creek, kayak, canoe, Florida

Distance: 7.3 miles from Big Cypress Welcome Center to Gulf Coast Visitor Center; 3.7 miles Halfway Creek Loop
Location: Collier County
Difficulty: Moderate to difficult
Tidal: Yes
Launch points: Big Cypress Welcome Center, Everglades Gulf Coast Visitor Center (See map)
Nearby points of interest: Big Cypress National Preserve, The Everglades

Rentals/Outfitters/Tours:

Everglades Adventures at the Ivey House  (rentals, tours, shuttle)

Support and Advocacy:

Friends of The Everglades

Halfway Creek... Comments and Photos

To paddle the entire trail, using an outfitter is a good idea. We used the Everglades Adventures outfitter at the Ivey House (a great place to stay) to drop off at Big Cypress Welcome Center and paddled to the Gulf Coast Visitor Center along the main trail. The mangrove tunnels don't seem to have been cut back recently (compared to a trip we made several years ago), it was a challenging trip with obstacles in the water and we would not recommend this to novice paddlers.

This trip is better taken November-April, the bugs and heat can be oppressive. Airboats might be heard and sometimes seen, powerboats will be encountered at Plantation Island and Chokoloskee Bay.


Along canal from launch to creek

Launching from Sea Grape Drive at the Big Cypress Welcome Center on US41, the paddling trail starts along a manmade canal.


Paddling Trail on Halfway Creek

The trail is wide until the HC3 marker where the loop trail connects (it connects back at HC7). At HC6, the trail enters the mangrove and is narrow and twisting. When it emerges from the mangrove, it become wide again and passes a residential area on Plantation Island.


Loop Trail

The Loop Trail links onto the main trail at HC3 and HC7 - wide at the HC3 end and narrow through mangrove tunnels at the HC7 end. We did not paddle on the loop trail this trip.


Paddling Trail on Chokoloskee Bay

The creek opens onto Chocoloskee Bay, go under the bridge and bear right to the Everglades Gulf Coast Visitor Center.


Seen along the trail

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