Florida naked winter part 3: Springing in to Blind Creek Beach and Sunnier Palms.
Picture the scene: A naked man and a naked woman wade into the Atlantic Ocean at clothing-optional Blind Creek Beach in Fort Pierce, Florida. They are on a mission.
The water is chilly, and the waves are big enough to knock them off their feet if they aren’t careful. So the woman clings to the man’s arm for balance as they make their way through the rolling, crashing surf.
At one point the woman tells the man, “This is good, right here.”
“But I’m not deep enough,” whines the man. So they step further into the waves, jumping up to ride the swells before they crash down on their heads. “OK,” he says. “This is the spot.”
Concentrating deeply, the couple sways arm-in-arm. Finally, they can pee.
Now, I’m not saying that we did this at Blind Creek Beach, but I’m also not saying that we didn’t do this.
The thing is you see people peeing in the ocean all the time, standing waist-deep with their hands on their hips or swatting the water, surveying the horizon like they are pondering the wonders of the universe. Like they’re fooling us.
You don’t have to pee in the ocean at Blind Creek Beach. Porta potties are maintained at the parking area (you must be clothed) thanks to the efforts of the Treasure Coast Naturists. This local naturist group has worked hard to keep Blind Creek Beach open as a lawful nude beach. And, as we found out after relocating to Sunnier Palms Nudist Park from Eden RV Resort and the Gulf Coast, they have a real treasure here.
We had picked Sunnier Palms because it seemed like the perfect location to visit Blind Creek Beach and famed Haulover Beach to the south.
Friends who had been to the resort commented that they liked it, but it was quiet. We quickly discovered that that was true.
If Eden was peaceful compared to Lake Como, Caliente, Cypress Cove and Florida’s other hopping nudist resorts, Sunnier Palms was downright sleepy. And I mean that in a nice way.
We were there through March and April, and they had exactly:
- One dance
- One women’s tea party
- One cocktail party
- Three potluck dinners
The rest of the time, it was quiet time. It’s a small park with several resident members in mobile homes, plus seasonal RVers. Friday and Saturday nights, the clubhouse would be dark, the members having retired to their homes. We rarely encountered other people on our evening walks.
During the day, there would be a few members floating around in the pool. The pool crowd would pick up a bit on the weekends but we saw nothing wild and crazy.
Again, I don’t think this is a bad thing. It’s nice to have some peace and quiet. It’s just that this is not the place to come if you have happy feet. Unless you like to use those feet to walk or pedal a bike. And that’s where I really enjoyed Sunnier Palms.
Naturists enjoying Florida nature.
The park is around 24 acres with 12 of those designated as a nature preserve. I’d walk from our RV, past the tent camping area and the community garden and step into a forest primeval (or at least how I imagined it). There’s a little pond back in the preserve and a looping trail system. I walked this path several times a day, past towering pines and thick ferns.
One day I spotted an otter in the pond, and another day — heart pounding — a non-venomous snake laying across the trail. One member said he saw a rare Florida panther in there. This place quickly became my sanctuary when I had to get away from work. I’m missing that little forest as I write this.
Sunnier Palms is located on state Route 70, also known as Okeechobee Road which is much more fun to say, and there’s a multi-use path that parallels the road in front of the resort. You can walk or ride a bicycle for several miles.
Unfortunately, you have to be clothed, and as bike paths go it’s not the most scenic with the traffic roaring nearby. But I loved it because, if you ride far enough toward Okeechobee, you’ll pass some canals with alligators!
Now if you’re a Floridian, you’re probably saying “Alligators? Meh” But we’re Arizonans. We’re used to giant cactus and giant rocks. We do have plenty of reptiles, but the only ones that are big and look like primitive dinosaurs are the politicians. So we get really excited when we see alligators.
Did somebody say “nude beach?”
But the beach was the star attraction. Several times during our two month stay we followed Okeechobee Road east into Fort Pierce, crossed the Intracoastal Waterway to Hutchinson Island, and drove the eight or so miles south along the barrier island. This included two times when our good friends from Port Charlotte drove over to stay with us and visit Blind Creek Beach.
The parking lot would be crowded, but we always found a space. We would lug our beach chairs and umbrellas and coolers over the short trail cutting through the sea-grape covered dunes. Then we’d pick a spot among the dozens of naturists and chill out. Watching fish jump and boats sail past. Chatting with neighbors. Braving the cool waves to, ahem, just … you know… scan the horizon.
If you haven’t hung out naked at a clothing-optional beach you are missing one of life’s finest experiences.
A naturist beach benefits all.
One day Treasure Coast Naturists had set up a table, promoting the organization and raising funds to help with their legal defense fund. Although recognized as a lawful nude beach, Florida’s Department of Environment Protection constantly pressures St. Lucie County to ban nudity on their beaches.
I know I’m biased here, but Blind Creek Beach seems to be a win for St. Lucie County. Every time we visited the beach we saw dozens, even hundreds of peaceful beachgoers. Many visitors (including us) dined at local restaurants, purchased gas and groceries in town and visited local attractions. The more this beach becomes popular with the naturist crowd, the more the local economy will benefit.
Plus, the nudists help keep the beach clean, and the Treasure Coast Naturists help educate visitors on beach etiquette, including protecting the fragile coastal dune environment.
If you like to live a clothes-free life, and you like going to the beach, it’s in your interest to support organizations like Treasure Coast Naturists in the fight to keep at least some U.S. beaches clothing-optional. OK, leaving soap box now.
Time to say goodbye to Florida, for now.
As the South Florida spring warmed up, we made one last trip to the beach. I took one last evening bike ride, which was a mistake as the gnats were now out in force, fiercely flying up my nostrils and sticking to my eyeballs.
And I took one last walk through Sunnier Palms’ forest (note to Sunnier Palms: Do not ever develop that land). We then put on our clothes, hooked up the car to the back of the RV and drove south to the Florida Keys. We’d spend a month wearing clothes (GASP — think of the children!) in Marathon before turning north to escape the heat.
Our Florida Naked Winter was over. And it had been marvelous. I do think we will return.
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