Sunday, April 26, 2009

We Have A Winner!

It appears that Richard has won the "SPOT TREY'S DOLLAR BILL CONTEST"
I wrote "The Expedition Windsurfer 09" on my dollar bill at Cabbage Key.
Sorry I did not see the comment sooner. I do not always go back to read the older posts.
If Richard will email me his address I will have a nice prize in the mail shortly.
My email is;
Thanks for playing!
Great Adventures,

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Slide show of Cayo Casta

I am still trying to learn how to make slide shows and incorportate music. Here is my latest attempt.

Let me know what you think. Please post a comment.

No one has correctly identified my dollar bill at Cabbage Key. Remember that you can click on the photo to enlarge it and get a better picture. I promise to send you something nice if you get it right.

Great Adventures!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Believe it or not Wind Surfing Magazine is doing a article on the Expedition Windsurfer. Here are some photos that might be in the mag. I should have lost some weight!
I am not sure when the article will be published so stay connected!

Monday, April 13, 2009

A Windsurfers Guide to Cayo Costa and Cabbage Key Cont.

The sail from Placida to Cayo Costa was a long one. Only 9 nautical miles as the crow flies, but having to sail up-wind the whole way made the trip 20 miles long. The winds varied from 10kts in the early part of the day to about 15kts in the afternoon. Having the ability to carry supplies and safety gear provides a whole new prespective to adventure on a windsurfer. The photo above shows one to the many islands that I sailed past. This one had a seabird rookery.

The park rangers office and dock are located on the east side of Cayo Costa. I pulled my Expedition Windsurfer up on the small sandy spot in the background. Behind me is Pelican Bay. A small lagoon protected by Punta Blanca Island to the east and Cayo Costa to west. It provides a great anchorage for boats cruising up and down the west coast of Florida.

This is the gift shop on Cayo Costa. It is small but has all that any traveler might need including cold drinks. I especially appreciated that since all I carried with me was warm bottled cooler. The park rangers and the staff are all very helpful and attentive. I arrived 30 minutes after closing and did not have any reservations. When I told the park ranger I had just windsurfed 20 miles to get here the look on his face was perfect. I could just hear him thinking "you poor soul, why on earth..." He and his staff went out of their way to help me get my gear to the camp ground 3/4 of a mile on the other side of the island. Thanks guys!
The trail from the ranger's office and gift shop on the east side of the island takes you through the various natural habitats. From the mangrove swamp on the east side through the hardwood hammocks pictured above, to the coastal grasslands and pine forests on the west side of the island. The park consists of over 2,400 acres that make up one of Florida's largest unspoiled barrier islands. For those interested in learning about the natural environment this is a real paradise.
Along the trail to the rangers station. Evidence of the past.

People come from all over the world to fish the waters surrounding Cayo Costa and Boca Grande Pass.
What is different about this white sandy beach in Florida? No hotels, condos or tourist traps.
If you look closely you will spot a bald eagle on the beach.
Now what did I do with my hammock?
Just a short two miles from Cayo Costa is Cabbage Key. Cabbage Key is a real special place. It was originally built in the 30s as a winter home. Oops, let me start over. Originally built by Calusa Indians as a year round residence, then into the winter home and now as a restaurant with cottages. Famous around the world, you never know who you might meet at Cabbage Key.
Jimmy Buffet, author Randy Wayne White, Florida's current govenor, Charlie Crist and many others have visited this rare gem. I recommend the cheese burgers, they are world famous. Hey, an expedition does not have to be all work, right?
Thats right, those are dollar bills taped to the walls, ceiling, just about everything. Legend has it that an old fisherman came in to wet his whistle at the bar and taped a dollar bill with his name on it. He said that he may not ever make any money at fishing but he would always be able to get a drink at Cabbage Key. Today people from all over the would tape up their dollars. As much as $70,000 is on the walls at any time. The owners of Cabbage Key donate the money to a charity.
I will send a special gift from Florida's ancient history to the first person who correctly identifies what I wrote on my dollar bill.
The trip was a blast. My sail home was a dead down wind run with winds in the 15kt range. It only took me two hours to get back to Grande Tours. I will mark this expedition as one to do again soon.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Windsurfers Guide to Cayo Costa and Cabbage Key

The trip started here at Grande Tours in Placida, Florida, some 9 or so miles north of Cayo Costa. Grande Tours is a kayaker's dream. Situated on Coral Creek it provides access to both backwater paddling and the more open waters of both Charotte Harbor and the Gulf of Mexico. The manager, Mary, and her staff are knowledgable of all things kayaking. Whether you are a beginner or an advanced kayaker, they have just what you need. They also provide various tours of the area including guided eco-tours, night paddles, Calusa Indian History tours or kayak fishing guide service.

Take a look at their carpeted kayak launch! Bet you wont see that at every kayak shop.
More to come soon.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Home safe and sound- GREAT TRIP!

What a great trip!
I sailed my expedition windsurfer a total of 37.5 miles, stand-up-paddled 5 miles, camped on Cayo Costa, eat a cheese burger on Cabbage Key, met some really great people, saw lots of wildlife, got sun burnt and watched the sun set into the Gulf of Mexico.
As soon as I get caught up on my work I will post a complete story of the trip.
This video shows me just after arrival and after setting up camp. Boy was I tired!