Know the Trail
History and Development of the Paradise Coast Blueway Trail
The Paradise Coast Blueway trail development effort began with the Ten Thousand Islands section (Phase 1), which covers the wilderness area between Everglades City and Goodland. The main trail and six day-trip routes are the most challenging and cover the wilderness areas within Everglades National Park and the Ten Thousand Islands National Wildlife Refuge.
The Blueway development committee researched whether or not to use marked in-water signage. The decision was made not to pursue in-water signage. First, it would not be consistent with the natural wilderness character and it would likely not be allowed by the two national land managers. Also, the permitting process for signage takes several years and requires proof of budgeting and staff required to do constant sign maintenance, neither of which Collier County has. While some paddlers prefer sign-marked trails, the area of the Phase 1 section is not consistent with signage.
Phase 2 will cover the Goodland to Gordon Pass area and includes routes through Rookery Bay, a prime and easily accessible area for paddlers. Phase 3 will be the simplest to plot. It includes a trip up the Gordon River in Naples, and a coastal route along the beaches to the northern county line. It will also include Lake Trafford in Immokalee as a day trip.