- The Purple trail is open and connects the CREW Bird Rookery Swamp trail to the CREW Flint Pen Strand trails. Distance from the CREW Flint Pen Strand Main parking lot to CREW Bird Rookery Swamp trail is 3.1 miles; round trip is 6.2 miles. Signs are posted at the intersection of the two trail systems for your reference.
Physical Address: 1295 Shady Hollow Boulevard, Naples, FL 34120
Hours: One hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset
Trails/Facilities: Free – donations accepted, Open to public
The Bird Rookery Swamp Trail officially opened in July 2011. The Bird Rookery Swamp Trail offers 12 miles of hiking and biking trails, including a 1500-ft. boardwalk with wheelchair accessibility. A 1/4-mile crushed shell path leads to a 1500-ft. boardwalk, then the trails become ground level, sandy/grassy, relatively flat berms with swamp on both sides. The trails are actually old tram roads used when the area was logged many years ago. Biking can be a challenge on the grassy/sandy trails, but quite rewarding. The maple-cypress swamp is home to alligators, otters, Florida panthers, bobcats, white-tailed deer and more. There is one portable toilet at the beginning of the boardwalk and several benches along the trail within the first 1.5 miles. Beyond that there are no structures.
Birders will delight in the abundance of songbirds that frequent the cypress trees along the boardwalk, as well as the many raptors and wading birds found along the trails. Barred owls are common and swallow-tailed kites frequent the area in summer.
- Nature study/photography
The walking of dogs along this trail is not recommended.
From Fort Myers/Naples: From I-75, take exit 111 and turn east (away from Naples) on Immokalee Road (CR 846). Travel 11.4 miles and turn left onto Shady Hollow Blvd. (One mile past the Oil Well Rd stoplight – Shady Hollow is where Immokalee Rd goes from 4-lane to 2-lane). Go to the end of Shady Hollow (approx 2.4 miles). Parking lot is on the right.
From Immokalee: Travel west (toward Naples) on CR 846 (Immokalee Road) for approx. 16.5 miles. Turn right on Shady Hollow Blvd. Travel 2.4 miles north to parking area/gate.
Google Map to Bird Rookery Swamp Trails: http://goo.gl/maps/9tSNd
Go back to the Visit CREW page.