FL-Curry Hammock State Park in the Keys

Discussion in 'Florida' started by rookiecampers, May 18, 2007.

  1. rookiecampers

    rookiecampers New Member

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    Has anyone ever been? I just booked spring break 2008. I almost didn't get a site. All those snowbirds book early!!

    2000 Coleman Westlake
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    4 kids.. ages 12, 11, 7 & 6
    Married 15 years. Ready to EXPLORE!
     
  2. Fairview 2001

    Fairview 2001 New Member

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    There is no shade. Gizmos are absolutely necessary. All of the trees are about 3-4 feet tall. The campground is only open six months out of the year (open from November 1 through May 31 each year.) The sites are gravel pea rock.

    Here is an aerial view of the park.

    The campground at dusk

    Bring lots of bug spray and sunscreen. The sand fleas and mosquitoes can be bad. The park is surrounded by Mangrove swamp. Low tide can have a strong odor. There is no divide between sites. Bring water shoes. The sand is really marl and the bottom is muck and coral and cuts can become infected very easy. No boats allowed.

    <font color=red><center><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_ranger.gif border=0 align=middle> Ron & Barbara <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle>
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    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 19 2007 10:26:09
     
  3. mostlyok

    mostlyok We're Mostly OK!

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    We camped at Bahia Honda last year, which was great. But Sand gnats were bad and there were no trees, they had been destroyed by Wilma.
    I didn't know about this one.

    Heidi & Paul <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_camping.gif border=0 align=middle>
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  4. rookiecampers

    rookiecampers New Member

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    have you ever been? You make it sound like its not a good choice. LOL. From what i've read on rvparkreviews.com its a great campground. I can handle the sun and i hope that the bugs aren't as bad in March as they are in the summer... I tried Bahia Honda and they were full the week that we wanted.

    2000 Coleman Westlake
    Atlanta suburbs
    4 kids.. ages 12, 11, 7 & 6
    Married 15 years. Ready to EXPLORE!
     
  5. Fairview 2001

    Fairview 2001 New Member

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    Yes , I have been there. I live 70 miles up the road from there. I am in the Keys once or twice per month.

    It is a new park. You asked what it was like. I gave a description. Honestly, it is okay if that is all that is available but no it is not one of the better parks. While it may be only two years old, it is still in the middle of a salt flat swamp with lots of bugs. It is on pea rock and is very hot. Just don't expect a pristine white sandy beach. Have you ever been to the keys before? If you have you may be aware of what the ocean floor is like in that area. It is coral and it will crunch under your feet.

    rvparkreviews.com tends to give the nod to parks dedicated to "RV's", not a pop up. The motor home crowd likes this park but for us there are better camp grounds. I read the review on rvparkreviews and they were all posted by people that own Motor homes and fifth wheel trailers. i.e., "The ocean was right out our door, not really a swimming beach as is full of sea grass but very nice to look at. We had no problem getting our coach - 41 feet - into our site"

    I read: "The beach is primarily crushed shells...so it's a little rough on your feet...and yes, there is sea-grass"

    Bahia Honda and Long Key both allow boats on the camp site and we bring ours along. That is an issue for us. They also have real sand. Not trying to scare you but I was just giving an honest answer to your question.

    <font color=red><center><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_ranger.gif border=0 align=middle> Ron & Barbara <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle>
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    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 20 2007 11:43:17
     
  6. rookiecampers

    rookiecampers New Member

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    I appreciate your honesty. It just seemed that you were only posting the negatives and I wondered if you had anything positive to say about it. I'll check Long Key and see if there is any space available. Thanks.

    2000 Coleman Westlake
    Atlanta suburbs
    4 kids.. ages 12, 11, 7 & 6
    Married 15 years. Ready to EXPLORE!
     
  7. rookiecampers

    rookiecampers New Member

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    nothing is available at either park so we'll just stay put here and bring our water shoes. lol I have been to the keys but it was so long ago, i dont remember specifics. I am originally from Miami.

    2000 Coleman Westlake
    Atlanta suburbs
    4 kids.. ages 12, 11, 7 & 6
    Married 15 years. Ready to EXPLORE!
     
  8. Fairview 2001

    Fairview 2001 New Member

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    Funny. I am originally from Douglasville. My grandfather was Police Chief of Villa Rica and lived in Coweta County. My father was born in Newnan and my family settled in Dahlonegha in 1823.

    The positives: It is in the keys! It is on the water! <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_big.gif border=0 align=middle>

    The keys are still a nice place to go. I am going there this week to camp for 4 or 5 days at Long Key.

    Long Key is the only one in the Lower Keys, with any trees left. The water washes over the mangroves but destroys most of the trees during a hurricane. In Hurricane Wilma there was a 20 foot surge with 8 feet of standing water above the road. Hurricane Georges in 1998, Charlie in 2004, Katrina, Rita and Wilma in 2005 have all but removed all of the shade trees from the islands. Wilma again left 8 feet of water above the roads and destroyed the parks.

    Long Key and Curry Hammock were closed for almost a year after Georges and then again after Rita and Wilma. All of the campsites at Long Key were destroyed. All the electrical boxes and water lines were washed out to sea. Almost all the sand has been washed out to sea and what is left is the rock bed and sea grass. Make sure to bring swim moccasins for your feet. A lot of people come down and are not happy trying to walk on the Corals. You won't be able to find the swim shoes down there because they are always in short supply. We still enjoy it an spend about 2 weeks a year camping in the keys.

    Here are some pics to show you how the islands looked in Wilma. scroll down to see them all!

    Our Campsite at Long Key in 2004

    The Same campsite in 2006

    This is what low tide looks like! See why I said to bring and wear the water shoes?

    This one shows our trailer in the middle of the pic with the green EZ-Up Taken from about 150-200 feet from the shore line.


    <font color=red><center><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_ranger.gif border=0 align=middle> Ron & Barbara <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle>
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    2004 GMC Sierra 1500 W/Sway Control
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    Our General Store

    <font size=4>Click Here To See Our Photo Site</font id=size4></center>


    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 20 2007 13:35:23
     
  9. Yellowkayak

    Yellowkayak Popups.....when sleeping on the ground gets to you

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    Fairview,

    My wife and I are going to be in the Everglades from the 9 - 11 August , and were wondering if Long Pine Key campground in the lgades has very many people during that time and what opinion you have of that one if you've ever stayed there. And Flamingo also!




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    Edited by - Yellowkayak on May 20 2007 17:06:57
     
  10. rookiecampers

    rookiecampers New Member

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    small world!! My BIL lives in Villa Rica.. LOL
    Wow, the ocean floor is ICK... definitely need water shoes for that. Great pics. We will find plenty to do in the Keys so we'll deal with the icky ocean bottom. lol. at least we have a nice view. I know the keys aren't known for their beautiful beaches.. not like the Gulf Coast anyway.. My husband hasn't ever been. We were supposed to go down there for our honeymoon in Sept of 1992 but it was a week before Andrew hit and we were told there wasn't any water or electricity in the Keys.. a week later we found out that south of Miami got hit hard but the Keys were FINE!! We ended up flying to Miami, renting a car and drove to Orlando.
    Anyway, thanks for the pics.. it gives me a better idea of what to expect.

    2000 Coleman Westlake
    Atlanta suburbs
    4 kids.. ages 12, 11, 7 & 6
    Married 15 years. Ready to EXPLORE!
     
  11. Fairview 2001

    Fairview 2001 New Member

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    <BLOCKQUOTE id=quote><font size=1 face="Verdana,Arial,Helvetica" id=quote>quote:<hr height=1 noshade id=quote>My wife and I are going to be in the Everglades from the 9 - 11 August , and were wondering if Long Pine Key campground in the lgades has very many people during that time and what opinion you have of that one if you've ever stayed there. And Flamingo also!<hr height=1 noshade id=quote></BLOCKQUOTE id=quote></font id=quote><font face="Verdana,Arial,Helvetica" size=2 id=quote>


    Long Pine Key campground is very nice in an old growth Slash Pine Forest. There are NO Showers, no water at site and no electricity. The pond has a couple of large Alligators. No swimming allowed. The signs say it, and it is for real. You may not always see them but they are always there. From their website: It has 108 drive up sites for tents and RVs, including one group site. There are rest rooms, water, and a sewer dump station with fresh water fill, but no showers or hookups. A picnic area is nearby, with fire grates and rest rooms. There is also a pond for fishing, an amphitheater for winter programs, and several hiking trails in the area.

    Long Pine

    Flamingo has had a lot of problems. After Hurricane Andrew in 1992 the Parks service used the hurricane as a ploy to get money to renovate the park. It backfired. Politicians closed a lot of the park. 2005 almost closed the park for good.

    Flamingo has a campground. Their description: The Flamingo Campground is located at the end of the main park road in Flamingo. It has 234 drive-in sites (55 with a view of the water), 3 walk-up group sites (on the water's edge), and 40 walk-up sites (9 on the water's edge). It also provides cold water showers, two dump stations, picnic tables, grills, and an amphitheater for winter programs. There are no hookups. Flamingo has several hiking trails and canoe trails, and opportunities for saltwater fishing are plentiful.Flamingo

    Last time I was there the "grass?" was about 3-4 feet tall and was filled with stickers and briar's. There have been no facilities operating at Flamingo in the last two years. There was no electricity or running water available at all.

    Everything, the Hotel, the restaurant, marina were all closed.

    As I have read, some of Flamingos facilities have reopened recently. (as in the last week or two!) Look Here It says:"The following services are available at the Marina for the summer season, May through October 2007." so, I cannot speak for what will be happening next year.

    They have the following disclaimer:"Discontinued Services at Flamingo Lodge & Marina (from damages caused by hurricanes in the fall of 2005) are listed below:

    * Overnight Lodge & Cottage Accommodations
    * Restaurant/Buttonwood Café and Lounges.
    * Houseboat Rentals
    * Dock Rental Space the Backcountry side of the Marina.
    * Florida Bay Cruise aboard the Bald Eagle."

    Are you going to Kayak and camp on the Everglades Trail??

    NPS Statement on Flamingo

    If you want , I can refer you to another campground that has hot water, showers and laundry facilities (washers, dryers) nearby. 15 miles from the park entrance.

    What are you planning to do? Kayak, Sight seeing? Tell me what your plans are and I can offer some advice. Personally, I would drive over to the park instead of staying there. 3 or 4 days is a long time without a shower!

    BTW, when you guys pass through here call and stop by for coffee!

    <font color=red><center><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_ranger.gif border=0 align=middle> Ron & Barbara <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle>
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    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 21 2007 00:53:17
     
  12. Fairview 2001

    Fairview 2001 New Member

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    rookiecampers: Hope you understand by way of pics what I was trying to tell you about the shoes! The Keys are known for the snorkeling and diving and Coral but a lot of people expect sandy white beaches like the west coast or the Bahamas beaches.

    As for the bugs, they can be bad. Then again, I go to Atlanta every spring break and between the pollen and the yellow jackets they can drive some people nuts. It really is all what you are used to.

    Take the family up to the Islamorada Fish Company in Islamorada. (It is now owned by BassPro Shops) At dusk they feed the sharks in the boat basin scraps from the fish market. Hundreds of Sharks and Rays, Tarpon and fish of every description come into the basin to feed. It is awesome to see. (and free)

    Make sure to plan a day in Key West, lots to see there. A Historic Fort, the Roosevelt southern White House office, the Southernmost Point of the United States, the Conch Train, ect.

    Here are some pics of Key West in 2004.

    <font color=red><center><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_ranger.gif border=0 align=middle> Ron & Barbara <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle>
    '01 Coleman Fairview W/GlideOut <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_pu.gif border=0 align=middle>
    2004 GMC Sierra 1500 W/Sway Control
    3 Fantastic Boys</font id=red> <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_camping.gif border=0 align=middle><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_kayak.gif border=0 align=middle>
    Our General Store

    <font size=4>Click Here To See Our Photo Site</font id=size4></center>


    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 21 2007 00:02:06
     
  13. rookiecampers

    rookiecampers New Member

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    That sounds like something my kids would lOVE. Thanks for the recommendations!! I am already excited and we still have to wait almost a year before we go. LOL.

    2000 Coleman Westlake
    Atlanta suburbs
    4 kids.. ages 12, 11, 7 & 6
    Married 15 years. Ready to EXPLORE!
     
  14. Yellowkayak

    Yellowkayak Popups.....when sleeping on the ground gets to you

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    Fairview,

    Thanks for the post. My wife and I went on a kayak fishing trip in Flamingo last year on our honeymoon, and hooked up with a bunch of kayakers from the forum we are members of. They took us out past some small keys and we caught some nice fish. One of them is a Naturalist at a local park in Homestead, and he highly recommends NOT camping at Flamingo because of the Florida State bird "Mosquitoes). LOL, but the Long Pine Key isn't as bad.

    When we were in Flamingo last yeat it looked horable, from the damage the hurricane did. We are fully self sustained with our popup, so showers are not a problem. Plus in the summer time a cold shower using the parks facilities would feel great anyway. I was just asking to see if they "cleaned up" a bit sense than.

    We are going to be kayaking fishing for three days at Flamingo and Biscanye Bay, and was just looking for a cheap if not free place to set up the popup. I've got on line and saw some RV resorts, but at those prices might as well stay in a cheap hotel. But we are bringing our popup, so we will be staying in parks.

    We do alot of kayak fishing and every time we get a chance to go to Florida we try and expereince as mush as we can in the short time we are there. We have about $25.00 worth of bug sprays and what not to keep the buggers at bay. Once we are out on the water and away from the mangroves the mosquitoes aren't that bad. Maybe this year I'll get a snook! Last year I got a large tarpon.

    07 Chevy Trailblazer
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  15. Fairview 2001

    Fairview 2001 New Member

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    This Camp Ground is not far away. (15 miles) We stay here often. It is around the corner from my house. It is the only government campground in the county other than Everglades NP. Here are some pics, we just had a group campout there a couple of weeks ago. Nice place to camp. My pick but not as close.

    There is also Miami Everglades Campground which is a old KOA that lost the franchise. It is 10 miles from the park. Nice but the staff is militant and the park is more geared to motorhomes and TTs.

    There is also Southern Comfort RV Resort in Florida City. It is maybe 5 miles from the park entrance but is more or a trailer/rv/full timer kind of park. It is clean and close. I would stay there if traveling. Has a tiki bar!

    345 E Palm Dr, Homestead, FL
    Tel: (305) 248-6909


    <font color=red><center><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_ranger.gif border=0 align=middle> Ron & Barbara <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_bike.gif border=0 align=middle>
    '01 Coleman Fairview W/GlideOut <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_pu.gif border=0 align=middle>
    2004 GMC Sierra 1500 W/Sway Control
    3 Fantastic Boys</font id=red> <img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_camping.gif border=0 align=middle><img src=../Images/icons/icon_smile_kayak.gif border=0 align=middle>
    Our General Store

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    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 21 2007 11:06:52

    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 21 2007 11:08:54

    Edited by - Fairview 2001 on May 21 2007 11:11:58
     
  16. Yellowkayak

    Yellowkayak Popups.....when sleeping on the ground gets to you

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    Thanks Fairview!!!!!

    07 Chevy Trailblazer
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    07 Fleetwood Niagra
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    (1) Hobie Outback
    (1) Pungo 120
    (1) Pungo 100
     

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