Seven Sisters Paddling Trail
The Seven Sisters Paddling trail is located at eastern end of the Marjorie Harris Carr Cross Florida Greenway, 0.5 mile south of the Buffalo Bluff railroad trestle and 12 miles south of the Palatka bridge. This historic area includes Stokes Landing to the west where John Bartram stored supplies, shipped his samples and received his mail. The Union and Confederate armies fought the Battle of Horse Landing and the Union ship Columbine was sunk here. The trail includes nine uninhabited islands and the entrance to the Cross Florida Barge Canal. Except for the communities the shoreline is largely a flood plain swamp and hydric hammock. Creeks weave around the islands and lily pads and Vallisnaria grass abound. There is a long crooked creek that averages less that 50 yards wide leading from Hermits Cove toward the south around Trout Island. This trail is 1.5 miles long. The St. Johns River is 300 yards wide and splits the islands. The Rodeheaver Boys Ranch is 1 mile south of the islands. There are sunken barges and ships in the river across from the ranch creating interesting viewing.
Hermits Cove and Buffalo Bluff are on the eastern shore of the paddling trail. The Stokes Landing community is located on the western shore. The St. Johns River Club is just around the bend half a mile north of the railroad trestle. The St. Johns Ship Building facility is located on the western shore. The Marjorie Harris Carr Cross Florida Greenway trailhead is a 1.75-mile paddle from the area.
Trail Length: 8.8 miles
The only public access to the area is a small boat ramp in the Hermits Cove community. Nearby, the Hermits Cove Marina has docks, parking, food and beverages. Simply ask before you launch. Parking is nearby. The paddling trail is 3.25 miles from the Browns Landing boat ramp. There are two private landings in the Buffalo Bluff community, and details will be on the website. There are no public landings in the Stokes Landing area.
Paddling Seven Sister Islands
This area is a beautiful paddling area with the many islands and wildlife species. The trail averages over 100 yards wide and the river is narrow. Caution should be used when crossing the river channel due to motorized traffic. Plan your paddle before you cast off since you will be returning to your launch site and there are several creeks and islands in the trail.