Stuart to Chokoloskee; EAA Reservoir Between…


Pin is location east of EAA Reservoir area; Stuart is blue dot, and Chokoloskee is next to Everglades City on lower west coast.

The day began with smoke, smoke off the sugarcane fields.

Yesterday, Ed and I took a flight from Stuart to Everglades City, passing Chokoloskee and photographing the EAA Reservoir lands along the way. It is huge out there in the “Everglades,” seemingly endless. The easiest way to get one’s bearings is to look for the Miami and New River Canals that run south of Lake Okeechobee. Highway 27 parallels the New River Canal; where the red balloon is located above is the area east of where the EAA Reservoir will be constructed. For more specifics see link (

For Ed and I the flight, although hazy, was an opportunity to learn to recognize from the air Water Conservation Area 3, just south of the EAA Reservoir Area. The water conservation area lands are not located in Everglades National Park, but water quality is protected.

“To me these are the Everglades,” Ed said looking down.

“They are but they aren’t,” I replied. “They are part of the Central and South Florida Project, they are not natural; they are controlled. When they are too full from EAA water, the water from Lake O is not allowed to go south. If too full, from rain, or otherwise the animals can drown. Trapped on the tree islands raccoon, and deer, and panther together. Terrible.”

“Why can’t the water just flow south,” Ed asked.

“Lot of reasons, people like to say it’s because of an endangered bird, but its bigger than that, mostly because we have chosen to make it that way, and powerful entities keep our legislature from changing it in spite of what the voters say.” (SFWMD Constraints:

Ed did not reply.

We looked forward to what appeared to be little hills. The cypress domes of Big Cypress National Park reflected in the sunlight, and I could see “end of the earth” Chockoloskee right next to Everglades City in the distance. Pretty…

I can understand why people like to live down there so far away from everything. But they too can not escape our problems ~not with water.


Water Conservation Area 3:

Big Cypress National Preserve:


Cape Seaside Sparrow:

Water Conservation Areas
Smoke rises over sugarcane fields southwest of Martin County near the Palm Beach Canal
Smoke, canals, sugarcane fields


Belle Glade, FL south of Lake Okeechobee
Ed asked what this is. Not sure flooded fields, mining?
Flowing Highway 27, the A1 on west side begins to show. Now a Flow Equalization Basin this land was once the Tailman Sugar Mill and is located on the east side of where the EAA reservoir is to be constructed.
Looking west of A1 towards A2 where EAA Reservoir is to be built
A1 from another position
The North New River Canal to Ft Lauderdale now follows Highway 27. It once was in isolation as people used the canal to get to and from Lake O from the mouth of the New River
Water Conservation Area 3 (WCA3) lies under A1 and A2 area; although not part of Everglades National Park, it’s water quality is protected:

WCA 3 close to Big Cypress National Preserve
Big Cypress National Preserve
1000 Islands off of Everglades City
Chokoloskee near Everglades City, Everglades National Park area, south of Tamimai Trail

5 thoughts on “Stuart to Chokoloskee; EAA Reservoir Between…

  1. I love it that you and Ed share your photos from above. I’m still trying to understand this whole thing…keep educating me! Appreciate this so much. Happy New Year!

  2. Thank you both for the helpful and insightful reporting. And the beautiful photos. Happy n safe 2109

  3. The WCAs are good habitats and are just as much a part of the Everglades as the Park. In fact, better managed except when they are flooded during rain events. They are flooded because most of the year, even during three months of the wet season, even if there is a rain event, flows are restricted to protect the Cape Sable Seaside Sparrow. Endangered Species. Even
    With the “deviation” granted by the U S Dept of Interior, only about 6000 cfs is allowed to flow under the Tamiami Trail from January to mid July. (Some years longer, this year the restrictions began in October). This blockage overfills the WCAs and prevents draining the Lake, forcing the USACE to drain the Lake out the C 43 and C 44, destroying the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee. Anyone telling you otherwise is putting out false information.

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