Length: 5 miles round trip if you go all the way to Atlantic Ave
Put in/take out: Deedee Bartels boat ramp.
From Jacksonville: North on I-95 to exit 373 (Callahan/Fernandina Beach/A1A). East on A1A/SR 200 for 16 miles to the intersection
of Atlantic Ave and A1A. Turn right on Atlantic Ave. then left on 14th St. Continue 2 miles to boat ramp at end of road. Launch is a sandy beach. No fee, no phone.
Route: from launch site to the Amelia River/ICWW and paddle south 1/4 mile to mouth of Egan’s Creek on left. The creek goes east and then bends south (to the right). It ends at Atlantic Avenue 2 miles from Amelia River.
Ride the tide – plan this with high tide mid-trip to ride current in and then back out.
Highlights: An eclectic route that mixes past and present. Submarines from King’s Bay Navy Base in Georgia enter the ocean through Cumberland Sound just north of the put-in. Piles of ballast stones from the 1800’s shipping fleets are visible just north of the boat ramp. The entrance to Egan’s Creek is 1/4 mile south of the put-in. The busy Amelia River gives way to the quiet salt marsh of Egan’s Creek and its alligators, otters, roseate spoonbills, dolphins and manatees.
Further south on the Amelia River are the large container ships in the Port of Fernandina. Smurfit – Stone paper mill is the end destination for all those trucks on the highway carrying
pine logs. Kraft paper to make corrugated boxes is produced here. Looking more like a New England port, the Fernandina Harbor is visible south of the mill.
A note about Cumberland Island – Many people want to paddle across to Cumberland Island from Amelia Island. This trip can be treacherous at times and requires good planning and open water skills. Strong currents, standing waves that can become 3-5 feet within minutes and tankers or submarines that cannot stop if you get in their path are some of the things to consider before attempting to paddle across to Cumberland Island.