Videos From Our Touring, Diving, Beach Cleaning, and Fishing Expeditions in Key Largo
Quite a few years ago, back in the mid-1970’s, I was fortunate to work as a mate then captain of a large passenger carrying boat that took people snorkeling on the shallow coral reefs of John Pennekamp State Park in Key Largo, Florida.
I promoted our business with the phrase “If you can swim, you can snorkel.” Twice a day, we hauled up to 61 passengers a trip on a wooden Harkers Island-built boat to witness the amazing coral reefs and tropical fish that are found right here in the United States.
Today, the State Park concession that I worked from has about 4 multi-passenger snorkel boats that have evolved from that one vessel.
Like snorkeling, there are many marine sports that have sprouted over my lifetime.
Obviously, canoes have been with us for many years. But, who figured out that you could sit on top of a kayak or stand up to paddle a fat surfboard? These are relatively recent innovations that have attracted a huge following.
Then, there are those Wave Runners. When I grew up in the Fifties, we never figured you could have a motorcycle that flew across the water.
All of those sports are fun for those of us who swim but owning all four: a canoe, kayak, paddle board and Wave Runner is expensive, space consuming, and a major maintenance hassle.
What if one vessel did all this, and more?
The Wavewalk catamaran style skiff is the stable and portable boat that literally, does it all. A visit to the company website at wavewalk.com will show you the W500 and W700 solo and tandem twin hull kayaks that are easy on your back because they are straddled like a Wave Runner. Fishermen are especially fond of the Wavewalk design because they are so easy to stand up in order to spot or cast to their prey.
These magic boats can be paddled with kayak or canoe paddles or outfitted for gas outboard or electric trolling motor or both! And, they are lightweight enough to carry on top of your car without a special carrying rack or trailer.
I discovered the Wavewalk design while I was searching the Internet for the perfect kayak to establish a retirement rental business in Key Largo. My first Wavewalk was purchased at retail price. That little W500 was so good that I used it in my commercial fishing business in the Chesapeake region to supply Blue Catfish fillets to Linda’s Cafe in downtown Lexington Park and the Victorian Candle Bed and Breakfast in historic Hollywood, Maryland.
At present, in addition to two commercial fishing work boats, I have a fleet of Wavewalk kayaks for weekend Wavewalk Adventures in the State Parks and National Sanctuaries that surround Key Largo.
And, I am fortunate to be the exclusive Wavewalk distributor for all of South Florida. Contact me if you are in the Chesapeake region and I can arrange for you to have your own Wavewalk kayak.
On a nearly daily basis, I motor my green W700 skiff through mangrove creeks or out in the ocean to make my own adventures exploring places that are almost impossible to reach by any other method of marine conveyance. This Wavewalk lifestyle is a most wonderful and unexpected retirement pastime that I am most happy to share.
So, if you are tired of being cold this winter and want an excuse to visit the Florida Keys, you have one (as if you really need an excuse to visit paradise).
My webiste floridafishingkayaks.com provides all the info you need to schedule a free Wavewalk Wednesday demo of this vessel. Or, a weekend rental with included guide service might be a way to enjoy a complete kayak, canoe, stand-up paddle board package in a boat that “does it all.”
Who knows? You might drive home with one.
As I close down the wood processing company that my father and I operated for almost 60 years in the State of Maryland, I am looking forward to returning to Key Largo for a working retirement filled with commercial fishing exploits, kayak guiding adventures, and relating fish stories from a slightly different point of view.
Twenty years as a U.S.C.G. licensed tonnage captain, sixteen years as a county commissioner, twenty plus years writing both political commentary and fish stories (sometimes, concurrently), and thirty five years of turning trees into lumber, firewood, mulch, and chips may have given me the life skills to find success and happiness commercial fishing and sharing the joy of kayaking in the remarkable Wavewalk vessels.
Imagine a vessel that combines the best qualities of a kayak, a canoe, a catamaran, and a paddle board. Yes, light weight, plenty of room, superior stability, and standup capability have been combined into one affordable boat design, Wavewalk.
Over the years, I have had over 30 boats. A Google search of my name, Larry Jarboe, and the word “fish” or “boat” or “kayak” or “canoe” will produce an array of stories and images that will show you just how many holes in the water I have dumped my money into.
My only regret is that my friend, associate, and brother in the fraternity of fishermen (and women), Yoav Rosen, did not design, engineer, and mold his amazing Wavewalk design fifty years ago when I was just getting started in boating. That would have saved me a lot of clams.
As bad as modern times might be, there are a couple really good products available that make boating, fishing, snorkeling, exploring, and many other on and under the water exploits more than affordable. The W500 and W700 Wavewalk kayak micro-skiffs are designed to provide a lifetime of boating pleasure for minimal cost.
And, they can be motorized as well!
I closed up my mill business in the Chesapeake watershed by mid-December and the mild weather and good fishing for Largemouth Bass, Striped Bass, Eastern Chain Pickerel, and Blue Catfish has been interrupting the closeout. Please check out the Blog at [wavewalk.com] to see that these fish tales are true.
Now I’m back in Key Largo for the winter season, and the beginning of a new life venture. If you live in South Florida or are just passing thru, I welcome your calls to me at 305-680-8841 or, preferably, e-mail me to schedule a demo of the W500 and W700 from my commercially zoned fishing docks in Key Largo.
Read more and watch more fishing videos on capnlarryjarboe.com