Situated less than an hour from Jacksonville, the George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park is an iconic landmark and public recreation space that spans Nassau Sound.
Stretching for over a mile, this pedestrian-only structure is a haven for anglers as it gives them access to some of Florida’s best fishing areas.
You’ll find it just seven miles to the north of Little Talbot Island State Park and eight miles from Fernandina Beach. Access to the bridge is via Amelia Island State Park, which in itself is well worth a visit.
Open every day of the year from 8 am until dusk, you can also cross the bridge on foot or bicycle. This is a particularly worthwhile thing to do at sunrise and sunset, when the hues radiating from the sun take on magical properties.
During their visit to the park, guests can engage in certain outdoor recreational activities.
Here is a brief outline of what you can see and can do during your time there.
Fishing at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
For those who enjoy fishing both the bridge and the nearby shoreline of Amelia Island State Park offers excellent opportunities to cast a line.
Some of the species you can catch include speckled sea trout, jack, redfish, whiting, tarpon and drum. While over at the Nassau Sound a state record 20-pound flounder was once caught!
Higher numbers of these fish tend to be available in the spring and fall than at other times of the year. Some of the most popular baits include shrimp and mullet which can be caught with a cast-net around the shoreline. Artificial baits are sometimes used by anglers too.
When wetting a line here you will be able to enjoy fabulous sweeping views of the Nassau Sound, Big Talbot Island and Amelia Island. It is also advisable to bring your fishing cart with you, as well as an umbrella for shade, plenty of water and a picnic lunch.
Should you snare a catch, there is a cleaning table available on the bridge’s northern side. It also comes with running water to help you better prepare your haul.
Unfortunately, night fishing is not permitted and you will not be able to gain access to the bridge before 8 am and after sunset.
While fishing, you will have to abide by the rules and regulations of Florida state law.
Hiking at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
With the bridge stretching for over a mile you will be able to take in splendid panoramic views of the surrounding waterscape.
Be sure to bring your camera or iPhone with you to capture some footage to post on your social media accounts.
Please be aware too that access to Big Talbot Island is currently not available on account of the middle section being closed.
Biking at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
As well as walking over the bridge, you can choose to cycle over it too.
Just be aware that access across the sound is not permitted and you will need to share the tarmac with fishermen and walkers.
If you do not have a bicycle with you, they can be rented at the Kelly Seahorse Ranch which you’ll find at Amelia Island State Park.
Picnicking at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
Should you fancy a picnic, there are several tables located on the bridge.
Providing excellent views of the surrounding area, you will find them located across from a set of restrooms.
Birding at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
If you are into birding, the park provides you with the chance to spot osprey and brown pelicans.
During the winter, you may even see bald eagles if you are lucky too. So it’s a good idea to bring your binoculars with you to increase your chances of doing so.
Nature & Wildlife
From its lofted position the fishing bridge provides visitors with an elevated vantage point in which to spot a range of wildlife.
This is particularly true when you get above the sound, where you will find uninterrupted views of the sky and water.
Depending on what time of day and year you visit the bridge, you may be able to see black tip sharks, bottlenose dolphins and possibly even loggerhead sea turtles swimming in and around it.
If you happen to be at the bridge during the months of spring through to summer, you may also spot diamondback terrapins. They are a species of estuarine turtle that nests on the shoreline of Sawpit Island.
Pets at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
While service animals are allowed within all areas of the park, regular pets are not permitted to join you on the fishing bridge.
For further clarification about the park’s pet policy it is worth contacting the main office.
Camping at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
There are no camping accommodation options in immediate proximity to the bridge.
However, within easy driving distance of it are several campgrounds that provide excellent places to stay for those with RVs, trailers and tents.
These include the Fort Clinch Amelia River Campground, Fort Clinch State RV Park and Little Talbot Island Campgrounds.
Between them they offer sites that have full hookups with water, sewer and electricity, rustic cabins, primitive tent sites and group camps.
Depending on where you stay, amenities may include comfort stations with flush toilets and hot showers, a dump station, children’s playground, laundry and swimming pool.
Amenities at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
You’ll find restroom facilities at the bridge’s northern end situated within the bathhouse. This includes flush toilets and a shower station.
These restrooms are wheelchair accessible.
George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park
9000 Heckscher Drive
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034
Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier State Park: