Autumn on Shell Key marks the waning of the oppressive summer heat and the start of camping season. Usually preceded by gentle rain squalls, the cool air moves south in waves that are a week or so apart. It moves in like a breath of crisp air after the rains – and then it dissipates over the following few days. This pattern will continue and become cooler as winter arrives in January.
We like to go for over-nighters right after a good rain. The days are mild with the sun traveling lower in the south – and night time temperatures are usually in the 60’s. Yet, the water is still comfortable enough to swim.
At this time of year, the water is clear and the island is sprinkled with the colors of Autumn foliage. However, the island sandspurs are particularly nasty because their dried burs tend to leave splinters in your skin. If you camp on Shell Key, don’t forget your required (but free) camping permit and please help us by cleaning a little extra before you leave.