ECONFINA RIVER*

For those cruising Florida’s “Forgotten Coast” the last gunkhole before swinging west for a roughly 15 mile jump across open water to the entrance of the long channel to St. Mark’s or the 36 mile run over to St. James Island and what could be considered the easternmost end of the panhandle, the Econfina River is where you’d want to spend the night resting up.

Though the river entrance is marked by a 20 foot high wooden tower it’s not easy to find this place. It’s all flat marshland with no landmarks. In general I avoid listing Lat/Lon in this guide, but if I don’t do it here you’ll get lost and there’s no real alternative if you miss it…so, try and find N 30° 1’ 55” W 83° 55’ 27” Those aren’t “spot on” numbers but they should get you close enough to see the tower.

This is definitely a gunkhole. Be careful entering the river. There are lots of large submerged rocks to port. Many are well buoyed, but prudence should have you giving them a wide berth. To starboard it’s all sand and mud. Good holding and well protected from wind in all directions. Small boats whiz in and out of the river to and from the Gulf and are the only indication there’s any life nearby. There isn’t a sign of civilization to be seen. It’s a nice, peaceful place to spend a night or a couple of days communing quietly with nature.

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