Join us for a ride in the Everglades! This year the 9th Annual Everglades Bike Ride will be held earlier, on March 13, to accommodate our winter residents. Cyclists will have an opportunity to experience the ride of their choice, at their own pace.
In addition to the bicycle ride, all participants will be provided a continental breakfast beginning at 7:30 AM, free bike repairs compliments of Bikes for Tykes of Naples, SAG support for the ride, tour of the historic Smallwood Store Museum in Chokoloskee, and a seafood lunch with a special treat of homemade desserts including calamondin cake. All rides start/end in “downtown” Everglades City near city hall.
For cyclists who prefer a short ride, there is a 16-mile (or eight-mile) route winding through historic Everglades City built in the 1920s, then across the mangrove-dappled causeway to Chokoloskee Island, which arguably has the most colorful history and attitude within all of Collier County.
For cyclists wanting a more challenging ride, you can choose from two longer distance routes. The 27-mile off-pavement route includes Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park, an intimate encounter with nature through pristine cypress forest famous for its orchids and bromeliads. The 62-mile paved route includes 17 miles along US41 in Big Cypress National Preserve through quintessential Everglades, with scenes of cypress forests juxtaposed by stunning prairies, then a stretch along CR29 to view the wilds of Fakahatchee, then tour the historic fishing village of Everglades City, all topped off by a stint to Chokoloskee Island with its refreshing sea breeze. Visit www.evergladesrogg.org and click on Everglades_Ride for specific routing information.
Participants from our previous rides have named this event one of the best cycling experiences in South Florida. Although we cannot guarantee the wildlife you may see during your ride, it will certainly be fun with lots of camaraderie.
This event is being organized by the Friends of the River of Grass Greenway, which focuses on safety, environmental education and stewardship for those hiking, walking, or cycling through South Florida and the Everglades. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Friends of Fakahatchee (www.orchidswamp.org). To register and for more information, visit www.evergladesrogg.org or call Patty Huff at 239-695-2397.