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A new pass at Shell Key Preserve, courtesy of Hurricane Irma

The 2017 storm opened a new channel at the Pinellas County island, which had been facing problems with stagnant water.
An aerial drone image of Shell Key Preserve in October 2017, shortly after Hurricane Irma opened the pass. [Courtesy of Peter Clark]
An aerial drone image of Shell Key Preserve in October 2017, shortly after Hurricane Irma opened the pass. [Courtesy of Peter Clark]
Published Feb. 5, 2018

Shifting sands and isolated islands are two of our favorite things here at FloridaBeachInsider.com, so news about shifting sands at an isolated island — Shell Key, in this case — really floats our boat (so to speak).

Hurricane Irma took a big swipe at Shell Key in October 2017. The giant storm literally tore through the island, opening up a new pass right in the middle of the key.

That's actually good news, because the nature preserve used to have a pass, but it filled up a couple of years ago, which was a problem in and of itself.

Tampa Bay Times reporter Craig Pittman took a boat out to Shell Key (which last we visited as a camping destination) to see what wasn't there:

Click here to read all of Pittman's story.

For more information about Shell Key Preserve, check out the Pinellas County website here.