Shelling at Blind Pass – Captiva Island, Florida

by BeachHunter on December 26, 2010

Driving across Pine Island Sound via the system of causeways and bridges on the way to Sanibel Island.

Driving across Pine Island Sound via the system of causeways and bridges on the way to Sanibel Island.

Finding the best shells involves timing. You have to pay attention to the weather and the tides. Sometimes you have to drop everything and go shelling. You snooze, you lose. But even being a shelling loser isn’t that bad. There are always consolation prizes waiting for you at the beach.

Strong cold fronts often bring excellent shelling to Florida’s Gulf beaches. December brought an unusually strong cold front that really churned up the Gulf and brought lots of shells to the southwest Florida beaches. After reading about the incredible shelling on the I Love Shelling blog I decided I had to take a quick drive down to Blind Pass on Sanibel / Captiva Islands. I was a few days late, but still had a great time and found some nice shells.

Blind Pass, Captiva Island

Blind Pass as viewed from the Captiva Island side.

A large sand bar has formed on the Captiva side of the recently opened Blind Pass. It was covered with shells. Even though it had been carefully picked through by much more experienced shellers than me, I was not disappointed with the shells I found.

Shells at Blind Pass, Sanibel/Captiva Island

After a strong cold front, piles of shells accumulated on the sand bar in Blind Pass.

Captiva Island shells.

Here are some of the nicer shells I picked up during the hour I spent on the sand bar at Blind Pass. Calico clams were everywhere.

Going fishing in Blind Pass, Sanibel / Captiva Island.

Blind Pass is popular with both shellers and fishermen. The bridge in the photo leads from Sanibel Island to Captiva Island.

Captiva Beach, near Blind Pass. Looking north.

Captiva Beach, near Blind Pass. Looking north.

Captiva Island parking meter at Blind Pass.

Before you can park at the beach accesses on Sanibel and Captiva, you have to pay the troll.

While I did enjoy shelling at Blind Pass, I wanted to walk up to Redfish Pass, so I only spent an hour at Blind Pass. Unfortunately I missed some great beachcombing further south around Gulfside City Park, as documented at I Love Shelling.

Also, Venice Beach has some great shelling as well.

It was nice to be back on Sanibel and Captiva. It brought back some great memories of our Sanibel Island wedding in 2009, a great morning bike ride on the island, beautiful sunrises, and morning walks on Sanibel’s beaches.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 iLoveShelling December 26, 2010 at 12:53 pm

I’m getting ready to head up to Blind Pass to see what treasures these NW winds are bringing to us again….. but I hope it doesn’t close the pass all together. Nice pictures and not bad on the shelling either, huh? Great nutmeg and ohh so pretty murex! Thanks for the mention and Happy New Year!

2 beachhunter December 26, 2010 at 1:13 pm

Looking forward to your report!

3 Kimber December 26, 2010 at 11:58 pm

Thanks for sharing your visit to Blind Pass for us all , this is our favorite place to find shells. Looks like you found some beautys too :)
I’ve got mixed feelings bout the pass staying open and closed. Again thanks for the update.

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