Eco Adventure: Coffeen Nature Preserve Tour
The Choctawhatchee Basin Alliance (CBA), in partnership with Visit South Walton and Northwest Florida State College, presents a series of Spring eco-adventures in South Walton County. Discover Roads Less Traveled offers visitors and residents varied opportunities to explore and discover the natural resources that make South Walton unique.
SoWal eco-adventures await your discovery.
Historical Tour: Coffeen Nature Preserve
Leader: Susan Paladini
Dates: 3/19, 3/26, 4/16, 4/30, 5/14, 5/28
Explore the Coffeen Nature Preserve and its history of World War II missile testing. The 220-acre Nature Preserve is owned by the Coffeen Land Trust, a local environmental non-profit organization dedicated to preserving it “as a place of peace and quiet and a haven for all God’s creatures.” Its history however is far from quiet. It was used as a secret missile test site by the Army Air Force during World War II. Hundreds of JB-2 “Buzz Bombs,” (the first pilotless, jet propelled missiles), were launched from the dunes into the Gulf of Mexico.
Join Susan Paladini, the Resident Manager, and explore the site where America’s strategic missile program began. You will view the original military photographs inside the “mess hall” and learn about the generous gift of the founder, the late Dorothy Coffeen.
This will be followed by a hike of approximately 1½ miles around the property, which will include walking along two original missile launch ramps, stepping down into concrete launch bunkers and viewing other military buildings. Enjoy the natural beauty of the Preserve and Fuller Lake. This is the most western of Walton County’s globally rare and imperiled coastal dune lakes.
Participants are encouraged to wear a hat, sunscreen and insect repellant and to bring bottled water. Closed-toed or other suitable walking shoes are a must.
Space is limited to 16 participants. No minimum.
Location: Coffeen Nature Preserve, Santa Rosa Beach
Eco-adventure tour schedule and descriptions are available online at www.basinalliance.org. Tour prices vary, starting at $15. Registration is by phone at 850-200-4160.