Sikes Cut divides Saint George Island from Little St. George Island in Florida. It was a project where the Army Corps of Engineers literally dredged a canal through St. George Island, splitting it in half. This project was one of the many projects along the Gulf that they pursued in the 1950s to make the Gulf more accessible to intracoastal shipping and to encourage tourism and infrastructure development.
I have been to Saint George Island many times, but I had never been able to actually get to the western end. Despite the beach being technically public access, the western end is mostly private property.
On this recent visit, staying in a rental in the private Plantation area allowed us to walk down and explore. From a distance, it looked like someone had cut a narrow ditch through the beach.
But once we got there, the scale of Sikes Cut was astonishing, much larger and more intimidating than I had imagined. Massive fishing boats navigated in and out, creating a palpable sense of the significant volume of water flowing from Apalachicola Bay to the Gulf of Mexico.
While I acknowledge that this project may not be ecologically sound and is likely regrettable, it remains incredible that humans can accomplish such massive infrastructure works. As a side note, Sikes Cut is also known as the Government Cut or simply “the Cut.”
It was named after the congressman from the 1950s, who, with the help of Bob Sykes, secured the funding for the project. Despite its controversial nature, Sikes Cut is an interesting area and a great place to fish if you ever find yourself in the Saint George Island Gulf area.