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Monday, February 28, 2022

Beach Walk on South Hutchinson Island

 Monday, February 28, 2022

Hi Blog!

After a couple days of paddling and hanging out with our friends enjoying live music on the waterfront, it was time to take our legs out for a good stretch. We set our sights on a long beach walk on Hutchinson Island. The beach is just a short drive over the south causeway from our campground.

Hutchinson Island is a barrier island in the middle of the Treasure Coast of Florida, stretching a narrow 23 miles through both St. Lucie and Martin Counties with the Atlantic Ocean on the east and the Indian River on the west.

We parked at Jetty Park, located on the north edge of South Hutchinson Island next to the Fort Pierce Inlet. The postcard frame says it all!

The Fort Pierce Jetty is a local hotspot for fishing, especially in the early mornings. Fishermen are known to catch anything from snook to jack crevalle, to sheepshead, snapper, ladyfish and more. The pelicans also seem to enjoy fishing from the jetty. They like the social aspect of it.

The Great White Heron prefers to hunt solo.

The jetty was paved almost the whole length with benches on each side. However, near the end of the jetty there was storm damage and much of the paved surface had washed away.  There were a number of cracks and crevices in the rock creating interesting tide pools.

This was a far as we dared go. The Phillies cap Kathy was wearing started a number of conversations with ex-pats from the Philly and South Jersey area.

In 1995 the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers modified the Fort Pierce Harbor and enlarged the entrance channel to 30 feet by 400 feet and dredged the turning basin to a depth of 28 feet. We saw several large freighters in the harbor.

The north side of Hutchinson Island seemed to get more wave action. We saw a number of surfers at Fort Pierce Inlet State Park. 

We tried several times to get a photo of the shy plovers. As we approached, they ducked behind the rocks. We just happened to catch this little one between hops.

In this photo, the beach looks fairly flat. We were wondering where all the people went. It wasn't until we walked toward the water that we realized our part of the beach was five feet higher than the ocean's edge.

We found a number of broken sand dollars. The insides were filled with nooks and cranies.

We couldn't have picked a better day to walk on the beach. The sky was blue, the sun warm and the breeze gentle.

The waves broke right at the shore line in one long crashing crescendo. They would crash behind us and race by and continue to crash in front of us. Click the link if you would like to watch the blue-green waves crashing onto the beach.

Anyone who knows us, knew there would be some shell collecting. Kathy stated she was going to wait until the walk back to pick up shells. You all know that only lasted about five minutes. Today's hunting and gathering was all about the scallop shells. Someday you will see these shells in a wind chime on the porch of our forever-and-ever house.

Any visit to a touristy beach area would not be complete without a waterfront lunch, complete with pelicans flying by and dolphins swimming around the green island at the end of the marina.

And so ends a great beachy adventure. The chance for rain increases tomorrow, so we are hoping to visit a museum and enjoy some indoor entertainment. Stay tuned.

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