Susan and I were in Ft. Myers this weekend for my annual Company Christmas Party. I’m lucky enough to work for a business that has an annual retreat for the weekend for all the employees… in the middle of winter… in FLORIDA. For those in our company not from Florida, it’s a great, usually warm escape, and for us based here, it’s a great chance to get together with our co-workers from up north.
Anyway, after our gathering, Sue and I drove to Grande Tours, the location of Checkpoint One. This is the checkpoint that has been bugging me from the very moment we decided to do the Challenge, as we have to drop the mast to get Clarity under a low bridge, and then paddle a hundred yards to get around the end of a railroad trestle bridge, now used as a fishing pier. There are pilings under water, but a check of the tide charts shows us to be (probably) safe from impact. After that, it’s 5 or 6 hundred yards to Grande Tours.
Grande Tours is, by the way, the way I want to retire… casually running a perfect location to sell, rent, and store customer kayaks, offer tours of the area, and just generally feel like a pith helmet and machete are required as part of the uniform of the day. Or perhaps loincloths and leapord-skin maillots… its’ up to you. If you kayak, go there. They even have bunkhouses!
Check them out at http://www.grandetours.com/ 12575 Placida Road,
Placida, Fl 33946 (941) 697-8825
We’ll post some pictures of the checkpoint in a day or so.