To transform into Clam Bayou Nature Preserve, Osgood Point underwent a major restoration project in 1995.
The effort was a collaboration with the City of Gulfport, Southwest Florida Water Management and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
Native vegetation was planted, and a system of boardwalks were installed, providing a glimpse into coastal Florida’s undisturbed past.
Resources for exploring the area
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Length: 1 mile loop
Trailhead: 27.74054, -82.69452
Address: Miriam St. S, Gulfport, FL 33711
Land manager: City of Gulfport
Open from one hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset.
Leashed dogs welcome.
From Interstate 275, head west on 22nd Ave S for a mile. Turn left at 45th St, and continue a half mile, taking a right at the end of the road. Turn left, and the parking area is immediately on the left.
Beginning at the parking lot, take the wide crushed shell path to the east through a tunnel of sabal palms.
Large beautyberry bushes border a right turn in the trail, just before the first overlook.
Turn left at the intersection and take a short stroll down the boardwalk for a scenic view of the bayou.
Head back to the main trail and take a left. Native firebush and coontie can be spotted to the right before a little boardwalk goes over a low spot in the marsh.
Continuing down the shell path, a covered pavilion is available alongside the trail before it descends around the corner to another boardwalk.
This boardwalk really showcases the natural vegetation of the estuary, as it is thickly lined with mangroves and sea grapes.
A bridge offers passage through this salt marsh jungle to two overlook platforms on a small island.
After taking in the views, head back to the main shell path and turn left.
The trail winds slightly, bordered by stout sabal palms and a bench. At the next intersection, turn left towards another boardwalk lookout point.
Tall sea grape trees reach up and over the path, clusters of fruit dangling from their branches.
Follow the boardwalk to the end for a more open view of the bayou where it meets the bay.
A bench is available, and a half-sunken boat named “The Grateful Dad” can be seen in the distance.
Head back to the shell path again, taking a left through a forest of sea grapes to the last lookout point.
This deck offers a scene of open water, with boats passing by, entering and leaving the marina.
Follow the path north, past the end of the street and back through the stout palms, then make a left, heading back towards the parking lot.
At this point the trail can be followed straight, or take one more turn to the right, then left.
The path goes over a dune with a bench at the top. Either route will return to the beginning of the hike.
The kayak launch is adjacent to the parking area and being on the water offers a unique perspective of the bayou.
If launching a canoe or kayak, immediately turn right and head through a mangrove tunnel.
Around the corner, the estuary is dotted with small islands thick with mangroves.
Timid roseate spoonbills and yellow-crowned night herons take cover within the branches, and the calm waters make for an easy paddle.
More worth exploring while you’re in this area.
Explore a maple swamp and an oak hammock on a pair of family-friendly loops along boardwalks and footpaths that lead to a tower on Sawgrass Lake
Tunneling through mangrove forests and palm hammocks to overlooks on Tampa Bay, the trails of Weedon Island Preserve offer unique perspectives for birders while interpreting one of Florida’s ancient settlements.