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Shane Waterfront Wilson's Blog and Boating Guide

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The Gulf Shore Grill & The Cottage

Posted by Shane On July 17th

Have I got a place for you to go boating this weekend.  Have you heard of the Gulfshore Grill & The Cottage on Ft. Myers Beach?

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This is a great time of year to go. If you like to people watch and have a great time you have to go!  Once you have anchored off  Ft. Myers Beach, you can walk up to the beach and eat lunch at the Cottage. You can sit on a deck or inside over looking the beach and Gulf of Mexico and watch the people, It is really quite amusing.

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The food at The Cottage is really good an the cold beverages are great too. If you want to dine inside in the air conditioning walk next door to the Gulfshore Grill which also offers amazing views of the beach and Gulf of Mexico. The food here is really good as well. After lunch you can go down stairs to the Beach Bar and hang out, enjoy a cold beverage, people watch,  throw a Frisbee,  play smash ball or just relax in the refreshing waters of the  Gulf of Mexico.  You will have a great time here, everyone is happy and having a great time!!!  DO not forget your camera.

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How Do You Get There?

This is easy. Starting from the Sanibel Causeway, head towards Fort Myers Beach VIA the inter coastal waterway. Keep heading parallel to Ft. Myers Beach. You will see the big concrete pier. Just past the pier you will see a large green building, the Lani Kai. The Gulfshore Grill and The Cottage are to the left of the Lani Kai.Have fun.

 

Parrot Key Caribbean Grill

Posted by Shane On July 3rd

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Looking for a fun get away, but still near everything?  Try Parrot Key Caribbean Grill. It is located at Salty Sam’s Marina. Going by water is the best!!! For the land lubbers you can go by car. (See below for directions by land or by water)

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This is a great place to take friends and family to have a fantastic time. They have live entertainment nightly for your enjoyment. The menu is to die for with the wide variety of food that is offered. You can choose to sit inside or outside by the water to enjoy the awesome sunsets. The staff is extremely accommodating to your needs to make it your most enjoyable experience. You will not be disappointed!

Directions by car:

From I-75, take exit 131 and follow Daniels Parkway West to Summerlin Road then turn left. Next, turn left on San Carlos Boulevard and then turn left on Main Street at the foot of the Matanzas  Pass Bridge. Parrot Key Caribbean Grill is at the end of Main Street.

Directions by boat:

From the Gulf of Mexico, enter the intracoastal waterway at the north end of Fort Myers Beach, go under the Matanzas Bridge.  Stay to the left and the Parrot Key Caribbean Grill is at channel marker 24. Boaters can hail the dockmaster at Salty Sam’s on channel 16 or 17 for docking instructions.

2500 Main Street,  Fort Myers Beach.  Phone: 239-463-3257 Fax: 239-463-2415

 

RumrunnersWaterfront Restaurant

Posted by Shane On June 26th

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Escape, Dine & Unwind.  Casual Waterfront Dining.

The above says it all.  We absolutely love this place!! I love to take the family, friends,  and clients here by water. The greatest feeling is to pull out of your canal with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres and cruise down the river nice and slow enjoying every minute. Watching the sky turn a brilliant reddish/orange color as the sun begins to set. Once the sun has set, we cruise up to Rum Runners and dock. Depending on the time of year, there is normally a wait. You can call ahead for reservations (542-0200). This place is well worth the wait. The atmosphere is second to none and the food and service is outstanding. You can dine outside on the water or inside in the AC.  I think you will truly love the entire feel of Rum Runners.

 

If there is a wait, the fuel dock is right next door. Fuel up your boat while waiting. Please remember, it will be dark by the time dinner and dessert is over. Be sure you are comfortable driving your vessel home at night. Things to remember, bring your spot light.

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http://rumrunnersrestaurant.com/menu/

 

How do I get there?

By Boat or by car … This is easy.

Coming from Cape Coral Yacht Club, get into the ICW and head towards the mouth of the river. As soon as you get to the slow zone, look to your right, there is a series of red and green markers. Follow these markers in as if you were going to Tarpon Point. Make a left when you get to the rock/mangrove jetty. Follow the markers down around the corner and you will see Rum Runners. Boat smart and have a great time!!

By car:     The address is   5848 Cape Harbour Drive

Phone: 239.542.0200 Open 11:30am-Close

 

Charlie’s Pass

Posted by Shane On June 21st

Many folks want to know where to go by boat to beaches that are not packed with a lot of people and only accessible by boat.

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Here you go.  Have you heard of Charlie’s Pass? It is located on North Captiva Island. Charlie’s pass is an unofficial name for it, but everyone calls it Charlie’s Pass. Years ago when Hurricane Charlie came through, it literally blew a hole right through the island, hence the name Charlie’s Pass. It was deep enough to bring larger boats through it. In a short time, The pass began to close up to where it looked like a little creek that only skinny water boats could get through. A very short time later the creek closed up. Now it is an amazing place to go to. We love to spend the day here on the beach. The neat thing about the beach here is you can anchor and back right up to the beach within feet of the dry sand. (No long walks to shore). The sand here is the nice white sugar sand and loads and loads of sea shells. Most people set up an umbrella or canopy right on the beach and enjoy the rolling waves on to the beach and the gentle sea breeze. My children and I cannot sit still, so we swim in the beautiful blue green waters and shell along the beautiful Beaches

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Okay this is the really fun part if you like to fish,walk East,  opposite of the Gulf,  about 200 yards and you will come to the back Bay, it is a natural estuary full of marine life. Birds, Crabs, Fish,, you name it. You will see in one of the photos my son throwing his cast net catching bait for his friend Jo Jo, who caught a nice Snook and of course released it. Enjoy the photos, this is such a beautiful place, unspoiled and full of nature. You are going to love it and you will not want to leave. Have fun!!!!!

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How do you get there?

Coming from Pine Island Sound,  head towards Redfish Pass. Hint, South Seas Plantation is on the south side of the pass. Once you are in Redfish Pass, head north up the beach . You will see a few homes on your right. Keep heading north and you will come to an area where the trees are gone and you can see clear over to the Bayside. You are there. Enjoy..

Picnic Island

Posted by Shane On June 12th

If you do not  have time to run all the way to Ft. Myers Beach or the barrier islands to go to the beach,go to Picnic Island. This is a great place to take the family and friends and it is an easy run. The kids  love it here as do the adults. In the last several years, mother nature has created a neat lagoon on the NW side of the island. I would only suggest smaller boats anchor on this side of the island. It gets shallow when the tide goes out and I have seen many, many people stuck until the next high tide. I would suggest anchoring on the NE side if the Island. There is plenty of water there. I bring My 28 footer right up to the beach and kick up both motors.   Remember to mind the tides. This Island is a great place to have family cookouts and meet friends in their boats. The kids have a blast playing in the sand and the adults can relax and watch the kids play.

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If you are really outdoorsy and like to camp. Camp on the island. There are many places to pitch a tent and have a camp fire. (Use common sense with the camp fire) and fish off the beach at night. You will be amazed at what you can catch right off the beach at night. Please remember this, not everyone picks up after themselves, please if you are ever at Picnic Island and you see trash on the ground or in the water, please do not be afraid to pick it up and put it in your trash bag. I know we all want to keep this place a beautiful place to visit. As we all know most people follow by example. Have a great time and boat smart!!

How Do I Get There?

This is easy.  Coming from Cape Coral Yacht Club, get into the ICW and head towards the mouth of the river. Go through the slow zone, when it says to resume normal speed, go almost straight ahead, you will see a green marker, should be Green marker #3.  This is the opening of the miserable mile as some people call it. Proceed staying in the channel and do not go outside the channel or you will run aground. When you get to Green Marker #7, you will see Picnic Island up on your left –

 

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(Google image seen above)

 

The Green Flash Resturant

Posted by Shane On June 5th

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This is great place to go by boat or car.  Although if you love the water as much as My family and friends do, then go by boat of course.

This is a little more formal than say cabbage Key, however, if you have been boating all day it is still perfectly fine to go in and have lunch or dinner. After a day of fishing or at the  beach with the family and friends, you can pull right up to the dock. (They now have two docks for plenty of parking for your vessel.) You can sit outside and enjoy the Florida breeze (if you do sit out side bring a few shrimp from you bait well or some white bait and there are a couple small white Herons that would love a hand out.) or if you are hot go inside to the cool air conditioning. The food is really good here and the service has always been great for us.

How Do You Get There?

This is easy. Coming from Cape Coral Yacht Club, get into the ICW and head towards the mouth of the river. Go through the slow zone, when it says to resume normal speed, go almost straight ahead, you will see a green marker this is the opening of the miserable mile as some people call it. Proceed  in the channel, do not go out side the channel or you will run aground, it is very, very shallow outside the channel. Follow the ICW into Pine Island Sound. You will have the back side of Sanibel on your left. Keep following the ICW. When you get to Green Marker 35 make a left towards land approx. one mile you will see a Red head pin marker, should be number “2″ marking the channel going into the channel into the harbor area. (Stay in the channel there are some shallow spots just outside the channel) Follow the markers in. The Green Flash restaurant will be on your right. You will recognize it from the photo attached. Have a great time!!

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http://greenflashcaptiva.com

Take a look and the Menu!

http://greenflashcaptiva.com/menus.php

http://greenflashcaptiva.com/directions.php

Play VisualTour

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PRICE REDUCED $30,000 OWNER VERY MOTIVATED DIRECT GULF ACCESS!!!!!! MINUTES TO THE RIVER!!!  Extremely well maintained custom built, 4 bedroom (4th bedroom is small),2 bath with oversized 2 car garage pool home. This home has been very well maintained. Bring your pickiest buyer. This home shows great. Formal dining room, Large family room with vaulted ceiling, fire place. Ceramic tile and wood laminate flooring throughout. Split bedroom plan. Master has sliding doors out to the pool area with long expansive views down the canal. There is a large covered lanai to enjoy the outdoors. There is a breakfast nook just off the kitchen which also offers views of the pool and water !!!. Lovely mature foliage around the property, Sprinkler system on a well. There is a large dock with a 10,000 pound boat lift. How great to walk out on to your dock push a button and drop you boat into the water and be in the River in Minutes!!!!!! Come see, you will not find a cleaner home!!!!!

Spectacular River and Sunset Views

Posted by Shane On May 13th

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5915 W. Riverside Drive  Fort Myers, FL  33919

Price Reduced$649,500
Build your Own Riverfront Dream Home
Spectacular River and Sunset Views
Deep water right at your dock   –Rare find
Existing private Dock and 24,000 Pound lift

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Merry Chirstmas and Make It a Prosperous New Year

Posted by Shane On December 19th

In case you missed this … Here is

Lobstering in the Florida Keys Mini Season Part 4

http://www.yourfloridawaterfronthome.com/category/boating-guide/

Have a great Holiday Season !!!

Shane Waterfront Wilson

Lobstering in the Florida Keys Mini Season Part 4

Posted by Shane On December 16th

Lobstering in the Florida Keys Mini Season Part 4

 

Hello everyone, I hope you’re doing great! We have been very busy here in Southwest Florida since our last issue of the Boating Guide.

The weather has actually gotten warmer since we spoke last and it is beautiful out, a little windy, but sunny blue skies. The snowbirds are definitely coming down, roads are filling up.  Restaurants are busy, the waterways are full of boats, and people are enjoying the climate, fishing and beaches.

The fishing here continues to be on fire! I’ve spoken to many of my friends who’ve been on the water fishing and they’re catching large mangrove snapper, large Snook (which are being released because they are out of season), and catching lots of Redfish, as well as Mackerel off the beaches.  The bait fish are everywhere with big threads at the Sanibel Causeway. Small white bait and green backs are being caught off of Fort Myers Beach and the grass flats.  Now is a great time to have your line in the water !!!

 

Another great thing is, the Army Corps of Engineers has stopped dumping water from Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee River. Our waters have become so clear it is absolutely amazing. I wish the water would stay like this year ’round!  We are getting lots of Snook, Redfish, Snapper and many other species moving up the River again. There are large schools of mullet and dolphin migrating back up into the River as well.

 

I’ve spoken to some other friends who’ve been offshore fishing for grouper and here’s a recent update from FWC… 

NEW: At the September meeting, the FWC Commission eliminated the February 1 through March 31 grouper closure for black, red, yellowfin, yellowmouth, rock hind, red hind, and scamp. These species of grouper are now open year-round in state waters of the Gulf.

My fellow anglers are pulling in lots of Grouper, Cobia and Permit out on the artificial wrecks and ledges.  All this talk of fishing makes me want to skip out on work and get on the water…  I just may have to go grab one of my clients, take the boat out, and see what we can catch!

 

I’ve spoken to several of my friends who are still up North –  they sure are getting a cold snap!  Lots of snow, ice and freezing weather with the wind chill pushing the thermometer below freezing.  I’m so thankful and grateful that I live in sunny Southwest Florida.
date on our local real estate market, whether it be on the water or off the water, feel free to email me and I will set you up on my Listingbook program.  Listingbook is a free service that I provide to my clients that will send you emails each day of new listings that come on the market as well as price reductions on properties that fit within your chosen parameters.  I think you’ll like it, it’s a great way to explore the area and a great Real Estate tool.
Okay now on to the fun part, “The Boating Guide: Lobstering in the Florida Keys Mini Season Part 4”.
We left off last time with our second group of people and small children going out in the boat and catching more lobster in the afternoon.  What a great time it was!

After a good night’s sleep we headed out for the second day of mini season in the Florida Keys.  We headed out to several of our spots on the the north side of the Keys, Florida Bay, but did not do quite as well as we did in our morning venture. Many of our Bay spots were cleaned out so we decided to go out on the Atlantic Ocean to some patch reefs in about 25 to 30 foot of water. Once we got to our spot, Wade and I strapped on scuba tanks and went down for a look. This area is full of coral heads and sea fans; just a beautiful, beautiful place to dive. Crystal-clear with a visibility of over 40 feet, there’s so much marine life! I cannot even begin to name all of the different creatures we saw.  Our harvest on that side actually turned out to be pretty good, catching about 12 Lobsters here. We also saw several small Moray Eels.
Check out some of these photos….

 

 


We did not take quite as many photos this afternoon, as we did earlier in the day.  We had caught nearly our limit of lobster so we headed in a little early.

We met up with our friends at the dock; they did very well for the day limiting out on their catch. Check out the photos….

 


Another amazing day on the water!  Just absolutely beautiful; words cannot describe what an amazing place this is.

The next morning we woke up and the whole crew took the boats out on a 10 mile ride to Alligator Light Reef, a marked reef with a massive light house off the lower keys. It’s a protected zone that allows no fishing, no spearfishing, and no taking of wildlife.  Take a look at the photos, you’ll see the amazing beauty this reef has to offer. Sea life abounds here. It is one of my favorite places in the Keys.  Want to learn more about Alligator Light?

Click on the link……

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alligator_Reef_Light

What a fabulous boat ride to Alligator Light Reef. The water is a brilliant crystal clear with a light blue-green tint to it; if you read the history, the lighthouse keepers referred to the water as “gin clear”.  You could see the bottom all the way out to the reef.  We saw several Loggerhead Sea Turtles as well as massive schools of Ballyhoo, which are a type of bait fish. Check out the photos….

When we arrived at Alligator Light, everyone anxiously got into the water and started swimming around. All you could hear was the children oohing and awing through their snorkels…  “Mom, Dad, look at this, look at that, what kind of fish is this?” Even the adults were amazed to see all the marine life at Alligator Light, it/s like Marine Biology 101… Words cannot even describe the beauty of this incredible place… Enjoy the photos….

 

 

Fish, fish and more fish. Every species you could think of. In the first photo above you’ll see Barracuda, Parrot Fish, Yellow Tail, Grey Snapper, and millions and millions of bait fish. Check out these videos of my son filming the base of the lighthouse underwater. You have probably never seen anything like this before! TURN UP THE VOLUME and listen to the popping shrimp underwater… it is like a million crackling noises all at once……..

 

Watch this second Video..

Are these videos just amazing? Did you hear all popping shrimp? Even more incredible in real life!!!!!! 🙂

I did ask Anne and my buddy Craig, do you want to hand feed the fish??? They were both like, seriously?? Yes seriously.. Check out the photos…..

 

 

Watch Craig hand feeding the fish. (CAUTION) one of the fish bites off the end of Craig’s finger……

 Just kidding…

 

 

 

Just an incredible experience, especially if the person has never done it before.

 

Well by now it was time to say goodbye to Alligator Light. These children, and of course their parents, will never ever forget this day as long as they live.  The things they saw and experienced today can never be duplicated until they come back to this magical place. Growing up in the Keys, I have been to Alligator Light many, many times and I’m still in awe with each visit. To be able to take friends and family out there and to see their excitement and enthusiasm is just an amazing feeling that I’m grateful to be able to share with other people.

  

 

 

 

 

 

Another Fantastic day on the water!  However, this day is not over yet…  Going to head to “Robbie’s” to hand-feed the Tarpon and have a fabulous lunch and drinks on the water. Sorry, but you will have to wait for the next edition of The Boating Guide: Lobstering in the Florida Keys Mini Season Part 5.

 

Until then, make time for Family and Friends. Do the things you talk about doing. Do not wait. Time goes by so fast. Like Nike says, “JUST DO IT!!”

 

Make it a great day, everyday, we all have that choice!!!!!!! 🙂

 

Shane “Waterfront” Wilson

 

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