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McKay Bay

Birding / Hiking / Adventuring Roadtrip Info

Andrew Thoreson
Sep 2017
 Typical view [?]
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Typical View (11)

Snapshots! (6)
GRADES: Click each for info, * = Note
How Big Not Rated
Importance Not Rated
Revisit? D
Birding C *
Wildlife D
Summer Heat B
Terrain A
Fun Hike F *
Maintained D
Mosquitos C
Biting Files A
Ticks B *
NOTE: B- C+ If not closed B+... but it is very closed.
NOTE: It makes you want to use lice shampoo and get a Hepatitis test.
NOTE: Urban
 LOCATION: Accuracy: Read me
Map On Big Map: Click map (or on google maps). Address: 134 N 34th St., Tampa, FL, Hillsborough, USA, 33605

1) What It's Like

Municipal urban park with birds but that's been treated so so badly I think junkies might begin to be grossed out by it. It's the place we joke about going to when we try to think of where next. There used to be a boardwalk that was probably the main show but it's had a sign closing it off until "2015 budget".

2) Kinds of Birds

Wading birds and a fair number of warblers and sparrows towards the recycling center.

3) Wildlife

We saw huge baited cages up here once. It's very urban - by downtown - so I have to assume they were trying to catch feral dogs. Regardless we've only see squirrels here.

4) Amenities

My first thought while typing this was "thank god there were no bathrooms" - the outside is scary enough.

A plethora of drug dealers (maybe), a goldmine for people collecting aluminum cans, an abundance of shuttered boardwalks.

You're in the city though so anything you want is a quick drive.


5) Dear Ranger

Why? Actually I'm sure the answer is "ask the budget committee" so maybe the question is "are you okay? - that sounds tough".

6) Time Requirements

It's out and back so it's about 1.5 miles total which takes about 50 minutes. I suppose the birds get more likely half way out.


When you park if you look around the areas that aren't the main paved trail you see an impressive amount of beer cans and condoms. When you get out of your car you notice a lot shady people just hanging out in their car. I don't know what drug deals look like but I always picture them waiting to make their exchange... or steal a kid or something. Not EVERY car but it's weird. It's one of the few places I worry about coming back to a broken window and no car stereo. And it has nothing to do with nearby Palmetto Beach being slightly Hispanic (very nice neighborhood!) - it's generally middle aged white guys sitting in those cars.

Once you start walking you notice someone spent money on signs and maybe this was really nice once. But when you see some that are completely absorbed by tree branches you realize that's very past tense.

When you reach the boardwalk - which isn't very clear - the sign says "...unsafe... Costs for repairs have been requested for fiscal year 2015 budget. Repairs will be made pending budget approval.". So I'm guessing that went up in 2014. It's funny to have return visits and see even that sign needs repairs. So this is all "Welcome to Florida's Typical Priorities".

If you keep walking it's unclear where this place ends because it goes very close to but around a ton of garbage for recycling and a bicycle impound. But birds love filth and muck so that's kind of good news. Very unpleasant walk but birds.

Along the way there are a couple of ponds and we haven't seen a lot of ducks (except gallinules) but a fair number of wading birds.

Once behind the recycling stuff so the bay is nearby (but off a hill and not really visible) - you tend to see a good number of sparrows and warblers in there. Very hard to photograph usually though because you tend to get right up on them and they just become invisible.

We've always found it to be a very unpleasant walk - just all of it - but like I said - it does have a fair number of birds even without the boardwalk.

It's too bad this place is basically abandoned because from the highway at a distance you can see that there are a ton of shore birds where the boardwalk should come out.


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