Another Name for Airboat: Swamp Boat
Since the early 1920s, Floridians have been finding creative ways to explore the 1.5-million-acre terrain that is the Everglades. Much of the Everglades is a giant watery flatland; an area of low lying, uncultivated ground, overwhelmed by water, wildlife and vegetation. The Everglades can be murky and thick with vegetation, unlike the deep ocean which allows most boats to easily cruise around. The Everglades is not quite as easy to explore because it requires a lot more effort and the correct type of boat to conquer the difficulty of the landscape. At Everglades Holiday Park, we have mastered navigation of the Everglades.
Typical boats are useless in many parts of these tropical wetlands. Outboard engines and standard submerged propellers that are common parts on boats are impractical in the shallow waters of the Everglades. The most successful method for exploration is: the swamp boat.
Swamp boats or airboats are flat-bottomed vessels that are powered mostly by automobile engines with propellers and not the standard inboard or outboard motors you usually see on boats and other types of watercraft. A cage is typically installed around the propellers to protect from debris and potential damage, and when the propeller is spinning, it pushes massive amounts of air behind the boat causing it to move forward.
Swamp boats can reach high speeds and quickly glide across the surface of the water. Swamp boats are built out of fiberglass or aluminum, with a protective coat on the bottom of the vessel. The coating prevents damage to the bottom of the boat if it should run across any hard surfaces, which is what swamp boats specialize in - making the protective coating a swamp boat's best friend. A swamp boat tour of the Everglades is the fastest, most efficient way to navigate the shallow and murky waters. Swamp boats can go up to, and sometimes over 100 miles per hour in only just a few inches of water.
Today, a swamp boat tour of the Everglades remains the most popular way to immerse yourself in nature. They are even used in rescue missions for their ability to quickly glide across shallow water. After Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana, swamp boats rescued over 3,000 patients from area hospitals in record time. Swamp boats were also used in Vietnam, border security in Iraq, and used by United States Special Forces in certain situations. Local scientists also use swamp boats as the most efficient way to gather and collect ecological data for their research.
Come on out to Everglades Holiday Park to experience a thrilling airboat tour of the Everglades today!