Santa Rosa Sound

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Santa Rosa Sound is a sound connecting Pensacola Bay and Choctawhatchee Bay in Florida. The northern shore consists of the Fairpoint Peninsula and portions of the mainland in Santa Rosa County and Okaloosa County. It is bounded to the south by Santa Rosa Island (also known as Okaloosa Island in the easternmost region of the sound), separating it from the Gulf of Mexico.

The Gulf Intracoastal Waterway between Pensacola Beach and Fort Walton Beach is routed through the sound.

The Round The Island Race, an annual 100-mile race for multihull sailboats that circumnavigates Santa Rosa Island, running half of its course through the sound.

During strong hurricanes, storm surge elevates the Gulf of Mexico above the barrier islands to the south and increases the water level of the sound. Hurricane Opal and Hurricane Ivan caused extensive damage to waterfront structures on both sides of Santa Rosa Sound.

Communities located along Santa Rosa Sound[edit]

Bridges crossing Santa Rosa Sound[edit]

Pensacola Beach Bridge.

Three bridges carry pedestrian and automobile traffic to the barrier islands on the south side of the sound. The first two bridges have the lowest clearance of any span over the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. For this reason, many sailboats with masts taller than 50 feet must "go outside" and bypass the protected sound using the unprotected waters of the Gulf of Mexico.[citation needed]

The bridges crossing Santa Rosa Sound, including the names of communities on both sides of the bridge (mainland side, followed by island side) and center span clearances above mean sea level, are:

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 30°24′07″N 86°46′37″W / 30.4019171°N 86.7768273°W / 30.4019171; -86.7768273 .