Kayaking Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan
Kayaking the Alabama Gulf Coast is a great adventure with many diverse locations and bodies of water within a convienent and excessible radius that makes it easy to go from Gulf to bayside in just a few minutes.I will share a few of the locations that I would recommend and what they are like as we move from Fort Morgan and then head east toward Orange Beach and the FloraBama state line.
From highway 59, twenty two miles to the west down the Fort Morgan Peninsula is Fort Morgan. Over 200 years old now a great historical site is well worth the visit. The ferry ride to Dauphin Island is a trip I would highly recommend. However, I would suggest renting bicyles if you havent brought your own, as the pedestrian price is five dollars round trip and an automobile will be well over thirty dollars depending on how many in your party. The island is bicycle friendly and a visit of Fort Gaines as well as the Estuarium are highlights of the area as well as a walk through the Audubon Bird Sanctuary and walking trail. I do have free delivery and pick up from Fort Morgan and the bikes are only fifteen dollars for the day!
Near the entrance of the Fort Morgan park is a public beach that is great spot for Kayak fishing.You can park along the old abandoned road but becareful not to park in the soft sand.
This will put you in a convienent location to get youself to the west where you find fishing boats anchored in the channel where mobile bay empties into the Gulf. In and around this area you can catch a great variety. Red fish, Spanish Mackeral, Cobia, and speckled trout are often caught, just to name a few.
Perhaps the Gulf is a little rough today and not the ideal weather conditions. Lets go east a couple of miles to Navy Cove which is a cove on the bay side that is easily accessible espeacially if you have an all wheel drive. If not its still not that difficult to launch your kayak but do not park on the side of the road where the sand is soft. Red fish can be found around this area as well as trout when the weather is warm and it is great for its scenic beauty as well.
All of this area of course is one of the best sites in the country for those of us who enjoy bird watching. The Osprey can be found year round flying through the sky often with a fish in their talons and are easily spotted throughout this region in their large nest built atop usually a dead tree that is still sturdy and standing. Their nest are built of drift wood and small tree limbs. They are usually found in pairs and may renovate the same nest for many years.
Early Spring every year nets are set out at Fort Morgan and birders from all over tag and release various birds for research and data being that this area is a last stop or first stop for the many migratory birds.
As we move a little further west near mile marker eight you will find the Pines public boat launch (number 14 on the Alabama coastal bird watchers menu). This area is great for the private beach area along its coast. The extensions of the trunks of the dead trees on the shoreline can take on a life of their own, with a little imagination of course. This location is in the Bon Secour which feeds into Mobile Bay. This will lead us to the intracoastal waterway and will eventually take us into Florida if we continued the course.
My next blog will take us into Little Lagoon and the new kayak launch site on the Jeff Friend trail.