Visiting Cumberland Island can be an out-of-the-ordinary experience irrespective of how you receive there; but kayaking to Cumberland Island is essentially the most exciting and spectacular way to take pleasure from this jewel of a barrier island. Though kayaking to Cumberland Island is not really a trip for novices, experienced kayakers with self-rescue skills needs to have no issue crossing the Cumberland Sound or Intracoastal Waterway and making their in the past from each day on the island. Here are a few day-trips for experienced kayakers who wish to spend each day on Cumberland Island, but don't want to take the ferry.www.the8cumberland.ca
From Crooked River State park to Plum Orchard on Cumberland Island: Put-in at the Crooked River State Park boat ramp at high-tide, or at least before the middle of the out-going tide - about 3-hours after high tide. You will be heading East with a very strong out-flowing current taking one to Cumberland Island. Only a little greater than a mile from the put-in, the Crooked River makes an almost 90-degree turn to the Southeast and then back to the East after about another mile. After the turn to the Southeast, stay across the left side and try to find the big left turn. As you continue out the Crooked River, you will be heading East toward the tree line on Cumberland Island and will soon be able to begin to see the white-structures at Plum Orchard.
The trip from Crooked River State Park to Plum Orchard is approximately 6-miles and should take less than 2-hours. Ideally, you ought to try to find an early enough high tide to get one to the island and give you plenty of time for sightseeing before being forced to head back. You certainly want to be back at Crooked River by high tide - or by dark if high tide is after dark. Bear in mind that even strong, experienced paddlers will see it impossible to help make the trip from the strong tidal currents in the Crooked River.his comment is here
From St. Mary's to the entrance of Beach Creek: Put-in at the boat ramp at the St. Marys waterfront at or after high tide to create this 4-mile trip out the St. Marys River and over the Cumberland Sound to the region close to the entrance to Beach Creek. The outgoing tidal currents in the Cumberland Sound will be pushing you toward Amelia Island and the Atlantic Ocean, so you'll want to monitor your ferry angle as you cross the Sound. Beachcombing on this section of Cumberland Island usually produces pocketfuls of shark teeth and frequent wild horse sightings. There's no navigation to the trip; you need to the falling tide out of the St. Marys River and cross the Cumberland Sound to attain Cumberland Island. Enjoy Cumberland until after low-tide and then take the incoming tide, or flood tide, back to St. Marys. This trip should take about an hour or so to an hour or so and a half each way according to winds and paddling speed.
From Amelia Island to the South end of Cumberland Island: The shortest, but most treacherous visit to Cumberland Island is from the boat ramp at the north end of Amelia Island straight across to the south tip of Cumberland. This route crosses the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) and the Cumberland Sound in a location with abundant, heavy boat traffic, so safety and focus on details is important. The crossing itself is less when compared to a mile; but this is a mile of potentially BIG, scary water. Head to Cumberland Island on an incoming tide and go back to Amelia Island on an outgoing tide. Two important factors to keep in mind are: First, that there are extremely swift currents in this the main Cumberland Sound and ICW; and, second, the wind and weather will change while you're on the island - making surface conditions for the return trip unpredictable. This is not at all a visit for novices and self-rescue skills are a must.
Before you go, call a local outfitter and check tide times and wind and weather forecasts. Also, make sure you have lots of drinking tap water and something to consume in addition to having appropriate gear and clothing for the trip. Most of the year, sunscreen and insect repellant top the set of things to remember for your trip. There's a $4.00 fee for landing on Cumberland Island which is often paid at the Cumberland Island National Seashore Headquarters in St. Marys, or at one of many honor boxes located on the island. With just a little preparation, a day-trip to Cumberland Island is of adventure and fun for a very affordable price!