Monday, January 16, 2023

Kayaking a Nature Preserve: Braden River, Bradenton, Florida - Jiggs Landing to Linger Lodge.

On a nice warm February day, my fellow paddler Mike and I decided to kayak at Jiggs Landing, a nature preserve in Manatee County, Bradenton, Florida. This would be Mike’s first paddle at Jiggs Landing, my second.

We wanted to paddle the Braden River from Jiggs Landing to Linger Lodge Restaurant, about 3 ½ miles upstream, but given that our time was limited, the many turns of the River, and we had not brought a map with us in case we got lost, we decided to limit our trip to one hour upstream and then turn around.

Briefly, our trip was loaded with many types of birds, including egrets and pelicans. We saw many large turtles. There were warning signs to be on the watch for alligators, but we saw none on this particular paddle. Of special interest is the kayak/canoe slide at Jiggs Landing. I had never experienced this type of put-in or take-out, usually, I did a shoreline entry or dock entry. The below video shows both the wildlife and kayak slide entry.

For those paddlers interested in going from Jiggs Landing to the Linger Lodge Restaurant and RV Park, I recommend first scouting this eight-mile roundtrip Braden River trip first, as there are lots of turns where one can get side-tracked, meaning possibly lost. I have attached a Google Earth map where I indicated this paddle to see the many choices that might get confusing.

Yellow Lines from Jiggs Landing to Linger Lodge Via Braden River

To scout this section of the Braden River with a limited time frame (paddle only one-way), I suggest leaving one car at Linger Lodge and a second car going to Jiggs Landing to put in. Of course, the option is always present to do the eight-mile trip.

Remember, for any paddling trip, always leave your put-in and take-out locations with family or friends. I always bring a compass and/or iphone app to trace my paddle as both a reference and a source to confirm where I am on any water paddle.

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