ATTENTION BOATERS!  WE NEED YOUR HELP!

A large boat broke anchor and beached on Anclote Key in early May during a time of extremely high winds.  The boat broke up and pieces are now strewn along the entire length of the island.  Please help by picking up boat debris and either taking it with you to a trash receptacle on the mainland, or place the debris well above the high tide mark for the ranger to pick up.  Please be wary of sharp edges and metal hardware, like screws and nails, along the shoreline.  We encourage you to wear shoes and gloves.  This vessel has become not only an eyesore but a danger to everyone.  Thank you for any help you can provide.   

Friends of Anclote Key State Park & Lighthouse

The Friends is a volunteer organization that supports Anclote Key State Park and the lighthouse.  It is a Citizens Support Organization (CSO) designated by the State of Florida and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.  It is composed of people who care about the ecological health of the islands and the integrity of the lighthouse.

Anclote Key State Park

Anclote Key State Park covers the islands of Anclote Key, Three Rooker Bar, and North Bar.  All are barrier islands about three miles offshore of the mainland with Tarpon Springs the nearest town onshore.  The largest of the islands is Anclote Key, a four-mile nature preserve composed of sandy beaches, maritime hammock, mangroves, and seagrass beds.  The other two islands are smaller.  North Bar is now completely underwater at high tide.  Three Rooker Bar is constantly changing in shape, size, and number of islands.  Named for the historical three wooden structures (now gone) built on the bar for the collection of guano, Three Rooker Bar now exists as two small eroding islands.  All the islands are important bird nesting, feeding, and resting areas.  All the islands are accessible only by boat; there are no bridges or causeways leading to the islands.  A State Park Ranger lives and works full time on Anclote Key.  Visitors are encouraged to take nothing but pictures and leave nothing but footprints.  

Because Anclote Key and Three Rooker Bar are nature preserves, no dogs are allowed.  This is primarily to protect the nesting and resting birds of the islands and other native island wildlife.  North Bar, a sand spit north of Anclote Key is open for dogs on 6' leashes.  Honeymoon Island to the south has a dog beach where dogs can play on 6' leashes as well.

Anclote Lighthouse

The lighthouse is a historic portion of the state park, owned and managed by the state park system and staff.  The lighthouse is open for climbing only during scheduled open houses that are run by the Friends of Anclote Key.  Due to Covid, no open houses are scheduled at this time. Visitors may walk up to the locked fence surrounding the lighthouse to get a close view.  A pit toilet, educational signage, and picnic tables are nearby for public use.   

Camping

Anclote Key State Park is open for visitation throughout the islands, and primitive camping is allowed at the northern end of Anclote Key.  Please be aware of the following:

  • There is no electricity. 
  • There is no fresh water.  
  • Everything you need must be brought with you.  
  • There are no trash receptacles so all trash must be taken with you when you leave the island.  
  • The island is well known for its biting gnats, "no-see-ums," and mosquitoes, so plan accordingly.  
  • Shade is minimal, so plan for extreme sun exposure.  
  • No dogs are allowed anywhere on the island.  
  • No drones are allowed on or near the island.
  • No alcohol is permitted on the island.
Please be aware of weather and tides during your stay.  Camping is free but registration is required.  Please call Ranger Tod Cornell at 727-638-4447 to register.  

For more information about Anclote Key State Park, please visit:  

https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/anclote-key-preserve-state-park


DOWNLOAD THE PARK MAP 

Find us on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/AncloteKeyLighthouse/

Thank you to D. Archbald for the photos below!

Florida Lighthouse Association


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