This is a wonderful post about living and boating in Pinellas County. People that live in Treasure island, St. pete beach or maybe Madeira have their boat in the backyard (water) or use a ramp on Gulf Blvd. This article shows you that you can launch a boat even if you do not live right on the water.
When my husband and I moved to Pinellas Park, FL in January of 2002, we knew that living in Pinellas Park, FL and boating would somehow have to go hand-in-hand for us. We moved to Florida from Chicago, couldn’t afford a house on the water with a dock, but knew that we would want to make boating part of our new, Floridian lifestyle. In the fall of 2002 we bought a smaller boat, a 19 ft. Regal, and have been happily boating ever since.
Most people living in Pinellas Park, FL, do not have a house or a condo with a dock on the water, Pinellas Park is in Central Pinellas, and although the Bayou and Bardmoor Area and many other surrounding neighborhoods offer beautiful houses and condos, barely any of them are on boatable water. But Pinellas County has made it easy to combine living in Pinellas Park, FL and boating. Many Florida residents have their boats at marinas, or they keep them on trailers. Our subdivision’s deed restrictions do not allow boats to be parked in driveways, but we have a 3 car garage, and keep the boat trailer in the garage. Anybody new to the area and/or looking to move here, if you are interested in boating, I’d be happy to help with my knowledge of the local deed restrictions pertaining to boats.
There are many high and dry marinas that will store your boat located right on the water, and many of them just a short drive from Pinellas Park. Since we have our boat on a trailer, we use the public boat ramps that are all over Pinellas County to go boating. Most often we use the ramp at “Bay Pines”, as boaters call it. It is a public boat ramp that is part of the War Veterans Memorial Park, a beautiful public Pinellas County Park, it is located at 9600 Bay Pines Blvd., St. Petersburg, FL.
The ramps at Bay Pines are wide and not too steep, they have just the perfect pitch, that it is easy to get the boat on the trailer even during low tide, without it being too steep that it is hard to pull out bigger boats. The floating docks are big and in good condition, so that they don’t scratch or damage boats that are tied up.
The Bay Pines ramp is located on “Long Bayou”, which leads via Boca Ciega Bay into the Gulf of Mexico. Its location is though well protected, and unless there is severe weather, the current is not very strong. Loading and unloading the boats is mostly a breeze here, I would recommend this ramp even for inexperienced boaters.
The Bay Pines Boat Ramp has restroom facilities, which are normally clean and well stocked, an added bonus after a long day of boating. The War Veterans Memorial Park itself is closed from dusk till dawn, but the boat ramp section is open 24/7. It costs $6.- to park a vehicle with boat trailer at the ramp, and $2.- to park a vehicle without trailer.
There is a big parking lot, even on weekends and Holidays the parking lot is not filled to maximum capacity for vehicles with boat trailers. However, there are only about 15 spots there for vehicles without trailers, so those are at a premium even during non-peak times.
We have had many wonderful boating days that started and ended at the Bay Pines boat ramp, living and boating in Pinelllas Park, FL go indeed hand-in-hand, this is the Florida lifestyle at its best!