Blue Turtle Cruising

Post Thanksgiving trip to Franklin Locks

We set off for a peaceful Caloosahatchee River cruise on Friday morning, the day after Thanksgiving (also known as Black Friday).  Joining us were my parents (on Island Time) with my two nephews, Jack and Ryan. On board Blue Turtle was Randy, myself, Corey, Sophie, Johnny (Randy’s father) and Gerry (Randy’s uncle visiting from Taiwan). Mike and Sally from Mystique would be joining us later that day to spend the weekend.

Cruising up the Caloosahatchee with Randy, Corey, Gerry and Johnny
Cruising up the Caloosahatchee with Randy, Corey, Gerry and Johnny

We cruised up the Caloosahatchee River to W.P. Franklin Campground and locked through the dam and locks. My parents have visited this spot a couple of times and told us about it. It was a great experience for Randy and I to learn how to pass through a lock system. The campground was very nice and well kept and had a lot to do for the boys. My nephews and Corey had an awesome time since they had a lot of room to  play, bike and fish. It was also nice to take the boat into fresh water for a change. The Caloosahatchee River is mostly brackish (salt and fresh), however, when you lock through, you enter fresh water. It was interesting to see the different wildlife around fresh water, like the birds, alligators and lily pads. From the pier, the boys fished and (Corey caught a 20″ snook) we spotted manatee in the water. The fishing was active on the fresh water side as well. The boys tried their hand at mullet fishing and after a little help from some of the natives, they were able to catch a few good ones.

W.P. FranKlin Park and Boat Docks
W.P. FranKlin Park and Boat Docks
Entering the locks
Entering the locks
Blue Turtle going through the locks
Blue Turtle going through the locks

I have to say this was probably the most enjoyable weekend on the boat so far. It helps that the temps were in the mid 70’s and it was sunny the whole time. This was such a different experience from hitting the beach and swimming during the Africa-like heat of the summer.  During the day, the kids would entertain themselves bike riding, fishing or playing with a remote-control boat. I went for a short run and took a lot of wildlife photos.  In the evenings, we’d eat dinner under the pavilion and make a bonfire to warm up to and roast marshmallows. Special thanks to Mike who brought the firewood! This trip has left Randy and I craving to cruise more often. We can’t wait to get off the docks more

Here are some some other photos of our weekend:
[flickr_set id=”72157632099058177″ max_num_photos=”55″]

2 thoughts on “Post Thanksgiving trip to Franklin Locks”

  1. Hi! Just received a notice that you are following my blog – the DeFever 50 Finally Fun. Thanks. Likewise, I clicked on your profile and see you are a DeFever owner and in SW FL. We will be working our way around after the Jan.Ft. Lau TrawlerFest and back to St. Pete. Perhaps our wakes will cross. I’ll dig thru your blog to find fun places to cruise on the West Coast of FL….we’ve never really spent any time there. Regards, Sharon 727-560-1801

    Reply
    • Hi Sharon,

      Thanks for stopping by. We’re very new to living aboard and owning our DeFever. It’s been just about 6 months so we haven’t done a whole lot of cruising yet. We do have a few favorite spots in our area though. One is Cayo Costa which we’ve been to a few times on our boat and my parents boat. We also just had a fabulous weekend at the Franklin Locks as mentioned in this post. When we bought our boat, it was located in Longboat Key (Sarasota area) and we brought it home from there. We made a 2 day trip out of it and the area is beautiful up there…might be worth a look as well. Regards, Kim

      Reply

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