Thirty five and a half hours before the full moon, I went sailing. Van Morrison sang "Someone Like You" as the sun disappeared over the far horizon. I turned the boat toward the east as the moon silently appeared over the bow of the boat. The moon beams guided the way home but it was Van Morrison's voice that led the way.
Immerse in an ECO-Tour and Experience Southwest Florida Islands by Boat
“Captain Brian Holaway is well versed in the intricacies of our unmatched locale. He can guide to and through a multitude of out-of-the way tidal creeks, bayous, keys and islands. More important is his passionate interest and respect for the region. With unique insights from his many explorations and his studies, not only does he identify the birds and wildlife that inhabit our semi-tropical watery land, but he explains their interconnectedness to their environment and each other. In addition, he shares the fascinating history of rugged people who came long before us: Florida Native Indians, the Calusa, the Spanish, the Cubans, early homesteaders, and the wisdom evident in the growth of their culture.
You will come away with great enjoyment and a new understanding of this beautiful place and its history.”
Historian, Betty Anholt
Author of Sanibel’s Story
Sunday, June 20, 2010
On the second longest day of the year, I traveled to one of the most remote locations in Florida, The Florida Everglades. I usually don't travel to the Everglades in the summer, mainly because of the bugs. They can be horrible, at best, in the winter. Summer they can be epic. Borderline plague. So thinking all these thoughts through, I hauled my boat, the Muspa, to the small outpost of Chokoloskee Island and set out to see one of my favorite trees in bloom, the Royal Poinsettia. There is a Royal Poinsettia tree located on Hog Key many miles from where I left the mainland behind. For over ten years I have wanted to observe this particular tree in bloom. I know they bloom earlier, farther to the south, but I thought it was worth a shot. On the way to Hog Key I stopped by Plover Key, a key I have never been to before. The shells were plentiful and the beach relaxing. The tides allowed me to stay for a while before I caught the high tide at Hog Key. The long weathered Poinsettia had a few red flowers which I expected to see a red glow from miles away. This tree has weathered many hurricanes and storms. I will try earlier next year to see this magnificent tree in bloom.
I decided on my return trip to travel the back country and go up rivers I haven't been up for over ten years. The Chatham River holds many secrets, this is where I left the Gulf behind and traveled into the watery mangrove forests. The notorious Edgar Watson had a place on a 40 acre shell mound at the turn of the century on the Chatham River. He was known to have killed a a few people and every now and then people who worked for him would turn up "missing". Truth or fiction traveling by his place does have a different feel about it. I didn't stay long. Weaving in and around the mangroves, I continued into Huston Bay traveling through Oyster Bay then into the magnificent Sunday Bay where the water averages 3 feet deep. Twisting and turning my way into the Lopez River where I had the tide in my favor and skipped across Chokoloskee Bay back to the boat ramp. At the end of the day, sixty miles were traveled. Beautiful cumulus nimbus clouds observed along with pink roseate spoonbills, a four foot shark in very shallow water, a large tree stump that I left bottom paint on as I pulled my anchor. Memories of the water and what lie underneath me, I have logged in my mind for the next excursion to the intriguing Florida Everglades.
Sunday, June 6, 2010
Suddenly its June, where did May go? The last part of May was spectacular. The clarity of the water was deliciously inviting. I spent as much time as possible on the water enjoying the sights, smells, and listening to the sounds of water. I enjoyed guideing two couples from Arkansas for the entire day. We tried to explore as much as possible. The trip started out by observing 14 manatees by North Captiva Island. We traveled north past the historic fishouses in Pine Island Sound. Then to one of my favorite lunch spots the Tarpon Lodge. After a fine culinary cuisine we traveled to secret spot number 2 on Cayo Costa. The beach was quiet and void of people. The guests said,"This looks like a corona commerical." We then continued our adventure by traveling to Cabbage Key. Nothing like being at Cabbage Key in the late afternoon. I happened to run into some old friends from Cayo Costa and made some new friends as well. Back to Cayo Costa we went for more beach combing. The latter part of the afternoon was extremely enjoyable we had the whole beach to ourselves. After enjoying the pristine beach on Cayo Costa we headed south to Barnchol Phil's resturant on North Captiva. The unique island atmosphere only enhanced the black beans and rice. It was now time to point the boat south and make our way back to captiva. The wind had calmed with only a slight hint of being out of the south. It was a great day on the water meeting new friends and showing new clients around. I look forward to when they return in July.