Located on the Emerald Coast in the Florida Panhandle, Choctawhatchee Bay is an inlet of the Gulf of Mexico. Connected to the Gulf by East Pass, the bay has a surface area of 334 square kilometers.
Its waters offer great swimming, fishing, and kayaking opportunities. However, the bay is also an excellent place to explore by kayak, allowing visitors to see the local wildlife.
Paddling in Choctawhatchee Bay
The Choctawhatchee River winds its way around before entering the bay. While the river can be intimidating for leisurely paddles, it is often a much calmer place than other bayous.
One of the most famous channels is the South Mouth, which sits above Point Washington.
Paddling in Choctawhatchee Bay is a fun way to enjoy the Florida sunshine and explore the many species of fish that call the bay home.
If you plan to paddle in Choctawhatchee Bay, consider renting a kayak. The river is undeveloped and filled with wildlife. You may see bald eagles and ospreys as you paddle. While paddling, be sure to stay safe and keep the area clean. This waterway is considered to be one of the cleanest bays in the country.
Kayaking in Choctawhatchee Bay
For kayaking in Choctawhatchee Bay, you’ll be surrounded by natural beauty. This bay stretches 30 miles from end to end and is only four to six miles wide at any given time. The waters are home to a diverse array of fish, including gulf menhaden, blue crab, dolphins, and even giant gulf sturgeon.
Getting to the river is relatively simple. Access is available below the Highway 123 bridge. The Little Choctawhatchee River begins near Dothan and flows west to east.
From here, you can paddle to the confluence of the two rivers, where you can begin your trip. You can do a half-day trip from Browns Crossroads to Newton. You can also access the water from Interstate 10.
Fishing in Choctawhatchee Bay
If you’re into deep-sea fishing, then fishing in Choctawhatchee Bay could be the perfect destination for you. The Bay is vast and has many sections and bayous where you can try your luck.
You can also try fishing with light gear if you’re aiming for redfish. Salty Jig Charters, operated by Captain Brad Bishop, is a great choice for fishing in Choctawhatchee Bay.
In addition to deep-sea fishing, you can also enjoy flat-water fishing. The bay is home to large quantities of baitfish, which will give you a variety of options.
These include croakers, which swarm the grassy areas, and mullet, which can be found in the eastern part of the bay. There are also plenty of shrimp and crabs to be found throughout the bay.
Swimming in Choctawhatchee Bay
One of the most popular swimming locations in the area is Choctawhatchee Bay. It is a relatively undeveloped bay and is filled with wildlife, including bald eagles and ospreys. You can even kayak or paddleboard down the bay.
There are many types of wildlife in the area, including both species of sharks and other invasive species. Here, you can enjoy swimming, fishing, paddle boarding, and kayaking.
A spring that produces up to 70 million gallons of water each day is located 0.6 miles upstream from the confluence with the Choctawhatchee River.
The spring is only clear blue during low stages. A vent in the limestone on the north and south sides of the pool is at the southern end. The depth is approximately 15 feet. The water is also covered with tupelo and cypress wetlands.
Boating in Choctawhatchee Bay
If you’re looking for a relaxing way to spend a day on the water, boating in Choctawhatchee will be the perfect activity. With four miles of pristine, natural seashore, this bay is ideal for those who enjoy solitude and quiet.
You can comb the shoreline for seashells, swim, snorkel, or just sit back and enjoy the view.
There’s even a boat ramp on East Hewett Road. The north end of the road offers a single-lane gravel ramp. If you’d like to explore more of the bay’s shallow water, try boating in Eastern Lake, which is adjacent to the Bay.
The Bay has numerous fishing opportunities for anglers, as well as other aquatic life. There is a variety of baitfish to catch in the bay, including croakers, which swarm in streams and marshes.
Mullet can be found along the east side of the bay, near the Mid-Bay Bridge. Crabs and Shrimp can also be found in abundance in the bay.
The Choctawhatchee Bay and River Estuary have many functions. Among these functions are the storage and regulation of stormwater runoff, providing a reservoir for drinking water, protecting water quality, and regulating floodwaters.
These waters also provide a home to several species of fish and wildlife, as well as providing windows to the aquifer and resiliency against storms and coastal changes.
Throughout Florida, conservation efforts are necessary to protect our coastline and natural resources. Conservation efforts at the Choctawhatchee Bay are necessary to protect the ecosystem.
The bay and its headwaters are rapidly changing and developing. While government and nonprofit management agencies are tackling watershed management on a large scale, individuals must take part in a variety of efforts to keep it healthy.
For example, a recent study has shown that the Bay and its estuaries support a variety of wildlife species, including endangered Okaloosa darter and Gulf sturgeon.
Are There Alligators in Choctawhatchee Bay?
A Florida alligator hunter caught a giant alligator this summer in the bay near Freeport. The gator was a whopping 1,000 pounds and stood 13 feet, six inches tall.
The reptile has been a local fascination for the summer, as Freeport sits on the edge of Basin Bayou, which empties into Choctawhatchee Bay, and the Gulf of Mexico.
Is Choctawhatchee Bay freshwater or saltwater?
Choctawhatchee Bay is a saltwater estuary located in the Florida Panhandle. The bay is home to many different species of fish, birds, and other wildlife. Saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico mixes with fresh water from rivers and streams that flow into the bay. This mix of fresh and saltwater creates a unique environment that supports a variety of plant and animal life.
How deep is the Choctawhatchee Bay?
The Choctawhatchee Bay is about 43 feet deep.
What’s biting in Choctawhatchee Bay?
Locals love fishing for Speckled Trout and Striped Bass in Choctawhatchee Bay, but you can also catch Redfish Grouper Flounder Spanish Mackerel. Keep an eye on the tide or moon phase because those factors may influence what kind of fish are biting at any given time!
Choctawhatchee Bay is one of the most beautiful places in the world. It is a beautiful place that is perfect for exploring. The scenery is breathtaking and the wildlife is incredible.
There are many different things to see and do, and the views are simply stunning. If you love nature and want to explore somewhere new, then Choctawhatchee Bay should definitely be on your list, as I would highly recommend visiting if you want to experience nature at its finest.
I hope you have a chance to visit this amazing place for yourself someday soon.