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Wanaflatsfish

Reports Chokoloskee, EC, POI, Goodland

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I was in Goodland yesterday; it looks like a war zone, complete with a convoy of National Guard troops and equipment. There is significant damage to mobile homes and carports, and a layer of mud about 1" deep literally everywhere. I had ~3" of water over my slab (all water gone now), although thankfully the house is on pilings. Those that were lower really suffered.

The public ramp was closed yesterday. Not sure about Calusa. Coon Key suffered a lot of damage and one of their dry racks is down.

Some really strange stuff happened. I had an anchor in my front yard. No idea how that happened! Also, my dock box is gone, but someone else's is on my dock!!! Amazing.

The nice thing is the community is bouncing back strong and proud. People are cruising the streets passing out water, ice and food and offering help as needed. No doubt the same in POI and EC.

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Flamingo is NOT ready to fish.  The ENP is closed and will be for some time.  I understand there is a request for help in Everglades City, looking for volunteers to help elderly people clean up their homes.  This is being organized for to,or row (Saturday 9/16).  Volunteers need to be "self-sufficient" (food, water, equipment).

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It's insane here in St Aug..Dead. I think the people are just beat down as most of us just finished rebuilding from Matthew. I know I am...     I tore out myself and I can't even get a dehumidifier and my buddy owns a restoration company...

We had tons of church groups, Red Cross, volunteers psssing out food and water. I guess they are everywhere else in state cause it's a ghost town here now. 

 

The church groups here last year were awesome to the folks that didn't have a big support system. Many hands make light work. Thank them for me. 

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I'm at my place in cip now. My son & I got here yesterday afternoon with as much ice as i could fit in 4 coolers, 60 gallons of gas, food, supplies, generators & I did a BBQ for 25 of my neighbors. We literally worked til we laid down & passed out after the last neighbor left last night.  

This place is torn up. I got hugs from sobbing people last night, thanking me for cooking them a simple burger. Truly touching. 

The rangers dont want anyone in enp waters right now. And if you trailered a boat down here I'm pretty sure the locals would be highly offended since they're struggling to cope with having no power or water in this heat. Besides, Ive been told the ramps in Glades City still have piled up debris on them & you cannot safely launch a boat here at cip either. The owner told me last night that only residents are allowed at this park until the office is reopened, which is going to be a while  

The enp guides rely on taking people fishing to make a living so of course they need to spin the current situation as "no big deal, lets go fishing!" Its dangerous to be running around the waters around Choko right now. Choko Bay at low tide looks like a maze of snags. But I'm sure the fish are hungry!!

Fishing means nothing to me when people are in need. But I can tell you that there is so much debris & trees in the water that when I do start fishing Choko again in the months to come it will be within a few miles of cip and I wont be going much faster than idle speed. Many lower units will be lost down here due to people hitting "submerged objects" over the next year. 

The need down here right now is gas & ice & kindness & sympathy for those that have lost everything. This thread should be a about helping others instead of fishing the enp again. We ALL want to go fishing again but timing is everything!

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Power came back on in Goodland last night. On the way over at 8am I saw an army of probably 50 power trucks at 41/29 preparing to enter EC. I hope they worked as fast and hard there as they did in Goodland yesterday. There were linemen from as far away as Michigan working in Goodland, as well as cops from Tampa, West Palm/Jupiter and even UCF Campus Police! Plus, the DEA and FBI (no joke!).

Once the power is back in EC I hope all these resources head to the Keys. They need it bad.

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6 hours ago, conocean said:

I'm at my place in cip now. My son & I got here yesterday afternoon with as much ice as i could fit in 4 coolers, 60 gallons of gas, food, supplies, generators & I did a BBQ for 25 of my neighbors. We literally worked til we laid down & passed out....

Fishing means nothing to me when people are in need.....

The need down here right now is gas & ice & kindness & sympathy for those that have lost everything. This thread should be a about helping others instead of fishing the enp again. We ALL want to go fishing again but timing is everything!

Conocean gets it. 

I helped parents of a fried -people I don't even know - tear out today. More rewarding than the biggest fish I've ever caught. You should try it. 

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13 hours ago, conocean said:

I'm at my place in cip now. My son & I got here yesterday afternoon with as much ice as i could fit in 4 coolers, 60 gallons of gas, food, supplies, generators & I did a BBQ for 25 of my neighbors. We literally worked til we laid down & passed out after the last neighbor left last night.  

This place is torn up. I got hugs from sobbing people last night, thanking me for cooking them a simple burger. Truly touching. 

The rangers dont want anyone in enp waters right now. And if you trailered a boat down here I'm pretty sure the locals would be highly offended since they're struggling to cope with having no power or water in this heat. Besides, Ive been told the ramps in Glades City still have piled up debris on them & you cannot safely launch a boat here at cip either. The owner told me last night that only residents are allowed at this park until the office is reopened, which is going to be a while  

The enp guides rely on taking people fishing to make a living so of course they need to spin the current situation as "no big deal, lets go fishing!" Its dangerous to be running around the waters around Choko right now. Choko Bay at low tide looks like a maze of snags. But I'm sure the fish are hungry!!

Fishing means nothing to me when people are in need. But I can tell you that there is so much debris & trees in the water that when I do start fishing Choko again in the months to come it will be within a few miles of cip and I wont be going much faster than idle speed. Many lower units will be lost down here due to people hitting "submerged objects" over the next year. 

The need down here right now is gas & ice & kindness & sympathy for those that have lost everything. This thread should be a about helping others instead of fishing the enp again. We ALL want to go fishing again but timing is everything!

I don't think any guide is "spinning" anything right now. I think they want to get back to making money and normalcy as quick as they can. They have families too. Why wouldn't they. I'm quite sure they have helped as much as they can but they too need to earn a living themselves and they are entitled to look out for themselves too believe it or not.

Yes, the waters may be trashed with debris right now near shore but I doubt it's that bad farther out away from shore. Guides will go out and assess the areas and find areas that will work for them.

So a guide is going to be highly offended if someone goes fishing?? really. Would they be offended if My power came back on and theirs didn't and I turned on everything and started living normal again and they couldn't because theirs wasn't on yet? How about if I drive a better truck then them, or own a better house then them,?? To me that's a ridiculous statement.  And just so it's clear, I've cut down so many damaged trees in my neighborhood for elderly people that I've gone through three chainsaw blades because there's no time to hand sharpen them.

Many of us on here have served our communities for years, protecting people that needed it in disasters of all kinds. I myself have personally served the US Government and as a local first responder for 32 years of my life and have seen disasters that you can never imagine sitting at your desk writing boat insurance policies. Maybe you should think of it as stress relief for some who see disaster every day of the week in one way or another. Believe me, its far different than being an insurance salesman but I'm sure you know that because You've probably flown with the Coast Guard, been deployed on the USS Carl Vincen and rode along with every law enforcement agency in your county.  I love when someone here asks a simple question just like wannaflatsfish did and all you get back is narcissism.  If I want to go fishing, Ill go fishing.

 

 

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I can tell  you with all my certainty you don't know what these people are going through cause you were "Gov" or a "First responder". Not more than a cop, firefighter, insurance salesman or anyone else who hasn't been through it. You (might) have seen a lot but you've felt nothing.  I've been a firefighter in FL for 15 years and worked through many  fires that left people homeless,  hurricane seasons and all that had no idea what these people really felt until we lost our home to Matthew less than a year ago. Then we tirelessly rebuilt  it - to the point we were featured in one of our local magazine two weeks ago - then lost it again last week.  Please tell me what you saw in your career made you feel like that'?  Rememeber, you said it was so  stressful it warrants going fishing in a virtual disaster  zone for stress relief....

Im not telling you that to feel sorry for me, but rather make a point.  I bet you couldn't argue that I likely know what these people need tho.  It's physical help, home cooked food, water, ice or even just someone to talk to that's not trying to take them for all their $.  BTW its the elderly, the single  woman, the people with no support system that need the help most.   So atleast wave at them when you drive by their nightmare to go fishing ok?

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9 hours ago, SkinnyH2O said:

 

 

I don't think any guide is "spinning" anything right now. I think they want to get back to making money and normalcy as quick as they can. They have families too. Why wouldn't they. I'm quite sure they have helped as much as they can but they too need to earn a living themselves and they are entitled to look out for themselves too believe it or not.

Yes, the waters may be trashed with debris right now near shore but I doubt it's that bad farther out away from shore. Guides will go out and assess the areas and find areas that will work for them.

So a guide is going to be highly offended if someone goes fishing?? really. Would they be offended if My power came back on and theirs didn't and I turned on everything and started living normal again and they couldn't because theirs wasn't on yet? How about if I drive a better truck then them, or own a better house then them,?? To me that's a ridiculous statement.  And just so it's clear, I've cut down so many damaged trees in my neighborhood for elderly people that I've gone through three chainsaw blades because there's no time to hand sharpen them.

Many of us on here have served our communities for years, protecting people that needed it in disasters of all kinds. I myself have personally served the US Government and as a local first responder for 32 years of my life and have seen disasters that you can never imagine sitting at your desk writing boat insurance policies. Maybe you should think of it as stress relief for some who see disaster every day of the week in one way or another. Believe me, its far different than being an insurance salesman but I'm sure you know that because You've probably flown with the Coast Guard, been deployed on the USS Carl Vincen and rode along with every law enforcement agency in your county.  I love when someone here asks a simple question just like wannaflatsfish did and all you get back is narcissism.  If I want to go fishing, Ill go fishing.

 

 

Man, we are all on edge after catastrophes! 

I have a few friends who are enp guides that will be helping with the assessment of damage when the park reopens so they can safely get back to work asap. And what I was alluding to was that its dangerous for us rec anglers to start running around the enp before the area is assessed.  

I didn't state that a guide would be offended if somebody went fishing. I stated that I was pretty sure the locals (in Choko) would be highly offended. 

If you want to go fishing then please do so. If you want to go fishing out of Choko then you will be arrested because the enp is closed.

Fishing is indeed stress relief and we all need it! I want the park to reopen just as bad as anyone and that will happen in time. 

Surely I havent seen what you have in your career. And vice versa. (but Im not a sailor & I once did a jail tour with my 8th grade class!) 

dont know, maybe I was caught up in the moment when I made that post earlier. But my intent is never to come off as having an excessive interest in myself. I am all about others. 

Thanks for your 32 yrs of service to our great country SkinnyH2O! 

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Guide, Locals or anyone else. You would simply be helping them out in another way by starting to pump money back into their economy at a time when they need it most. That includes the local bait stores, shrimp deliveries, etc. Helping them out is indeed a top priority right now however too many people flocking in to help becomes a burden, trust me, I know first hand. It complicates things, gets people hurt and causes more chaos which takes away from emergency personnel's plan of action.  If you don't agree, fine. I personally have seen it work. And I highly doubt any Ranger at ENP would arrest anyone right now. They barely have the resources to patrol the park on a normal basis , let alone now.

Justfish, I understand your loss, you have had it harder than most. Because I haven't experienced losing my own house surely doesn't mean I do not know what people feel, need or anything else. I too have helped people rebuild, remove debris and aided in any way that I can. I worked in Homestead after hurricane Andrew for a month, slept in a car, ate anything we could find and stunk like hell from sweat, bad water and feces everywhere you stepped, So  your first couple of sentences are pathetic to say the least. With that said, Unless you are a humanitarian aid worker, you at some point, have to move on with your own life. You can't say, Oh, I'm not going to go fishing today because Texas is flooded. You sympathize with the affected people,  Support them with whatever aid you can and keep them in your prayers. Heck, even drive down there with your boat and take a local fishing for a few hours, out to eat or whatever to get his /her mind off things for a while or Give them your phone number and tell them to call when they feel up to it. If they say no, or go to hell, at least you tried. If you don't keep your head straight and move on with what you want to do, you'll never make it out of your career in one piece, trust me.   

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Hey Skinny......there is nothing open in Glades City or Choko right now so it's hard to pump money back into the economies there until businesses reopen. Both cities have LEO's & National Guard forces everywhere including at least one LEO standing guard at the ramps in both cities except for cip where you can't launch right now anyways. Drive down there and see for yourself. Again, the park is closed. Guides can't run trips nor can rec anglers take locals fishing.

I'm not sure why you are so sour towards us. Trying to make fun of what I do for a living and calling people's sentences "pathetic" is bad etiquette and won't be tolerated by the mods on this forum but there are other forums you can join that will be happy to have you do that. If you have a problem with me or anyone else then send us a PM, let's trade contact info & we can talk or meet up to work out our differences. Please try to relax!

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Let's everyone step back and take a deep breath...  Yes, most all are on edge and have been through a rough patch these past few weeks, no doubt.  Please keep in mind the Forum rules here, no personal attacks. 

 

Skip

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Not sour towards anyone. Not making fun of anyone's career, simply pointing out differences and I'm not sure how you consider my reply as a personal attack but crying "moderator" was unnecessary. The word pathetic was used to describe a sentence in comparison to my experience. Obviously, some people aren't used to having their viewpoint seen from a different angle. Regardless, you won't hear from me again on this issue. I'll wait for you to give the all clear to head down to the keys again. Feel free to delete the thread if you want.

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I just received word that the ramp at Outdoor Resorts is open for use. No other facilities there are available and they won't be reopening the store, etc for approximately 4 more weeks. There are submerged piles of debris & trees in the water all around Chokoloskee and ranger availability for emergencies on the water is limited at best.

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Chill Pill.

A word of warning. I have already pulled a couple of dock pilings out of the river up here. They are too heavy to pick up and they are rock solid and water logged.

They are almost impossible to see from a boat as they are exposing only about an 1/8 of an inch above the surface. Lord knows what is hidden below the surface. You hit one of those floating pilings at speed and your toast.

We have cancelled a multi boat charter out of Anclote for this Friday due to conditions and water quality. The water coming down river is so bad it killed the shrimp in the bait tanks. I may take the tower boat and go poke around a little but will not be doing any zipping around for sure. Bad enough around here and I can't even imagine the debris at points south of here.

And yes, I would like a pay check but the guides around here are pretty much grounded. Locals have enough to deal with and most have had some unexpected  out of pocket expenses. Anclote ramp and park were still closed as of Saturday.

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