To follow this trail, launch at Alimacani Boat Ramp in Huguenot Park and head out through the mouth of the Fort George Inlet to the Atlantic Ocean. Turn north and paddle along the shoreline until you reach the mouth of Simpson Creek. Enter Simpson Creek and paddle south, past Kayak Amelia, all the way to the Fort George River. Stay to the left at the Branch in the Fort George River and end up back at Alimacani Boat Ramp.
This route takes the average paddler approximately six hours round-trip, without breaks.
*Experienced paddlers only.*
Launchpoint and endpoint:
Alimacani Boat Ramp
30º 25´ 17.2´´ -81º 25´ 22.6´´
11080 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, Florida 32226
Intersection of Atlantic Ocean and Fort George Inlet:
30º 25´ 42.6´´ -81º 24´ 19.7´´
North mouth of Simpson Creek and Atlantic Ocean:
30º 29´ 00´´ -81º 25´ 26´´
30º 27´ 37.3´´ -81º 25´ 42.0´´
13030 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, Florida 32226
Intersection of Simpson Creek and Myrtle Creek:
30º 27´ 7.4´´ -81º 25´ 22.9´´
This route is for experienced paddlers only due to strong currents, waves, and pockets of heavy boat traffic. Strong currents and boat traffic exist near the launch point/endpoint, or Alimacani Boat Ramp. As you paddle out towards the Atlantic Ocean, stick to the south of the inlet to avoid currents and boat traffic, or take a more direct route to shave time off your journey. As you enter into and paddle in the Atlantic Ocean, strong currents and waves are likely. The southern half of Simpson Creek, beginning near Kayak Amelia, is impassable at low tide. Plan accordingly. Stick to the west side of Simpson Creek where it intersects Myrtle Creek to avoid sandbars. As you reenter the Fort George River from Simpson Creek, look out for heavy boat traffic. We strongly recommend bringing a GPS unit to keep oriented.
Points of Interest:
This is one of the most scenic and challenging trails in this guide, taking the paddler through diverse habitats. Launch at Alimacani Boat Ramp and paddle past Huguenot Park, an important breeding ground for shorebirds and terns.
You will also row around Little Talbot Island State Park in its entirety, with its five miles of beautiful, white sandy beaches. It also has a four-mile hiking trail winding through diverse habitats. Wildlife in the park includes river otters, marsh rabbits, bobcats and a variety of native and migratory birds.
After you enter Simpson Creek, you will row along the southeast shoreline of Big Talbot Island State Park, a nature preserve located on one of Florida’s unique sea islands. Rocky bluffs overlook Boneyard Beach, famous for the salt washed skeletons of live oak and cedar trees that once grew near the shore.
As you enter Fort George River, you will pass the western banks of Fort George Island Cultural State Park. Stop for a break on the beautiful, white sandy beaches of its south side.