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Ft. Pickens Road closed due to weather, campers remain

SANTA ROSA ISLAND - Gulf Islands National Seashore has closed the Fort Pickens area to all incoming visitors through Friday because of the stormy weather overnight.

Fort Pickens Road was left drenched, with sand covering the asphalt in some areas. The road is closed to vehicles and new campers arent allowed, but ones who are already staying at the campgrounds nearby, like the Stansberry family, can stick around.

It was a bad storm, said Craig Stansberry, whos visiting the area with his wife and son from Atlanta,We looked out and saw tents crashing in, we saw gazebos, our gazebos got smashed in.

The Stansberry family is staying through the end of the week.

In Georgia, North Georgia, we dont get rains quite like this, Craig said, Even in the mountains.

Craig says the stormy weather forced his family to buy coolers nearby and drag them back to camp.

The wind and the rain drove the water into the side of our RV last night, Craig explained, And shorted out the refrigerator.

Craig says his family is okay and ready for the cold.

Its only supposed to get down in the 20s, Craig said, So its not gonna be that cold. I guess for you Florida boys it is gonna be cold.

Elsewhere on the island, streets were flooded, trees were toppled and a few yards were left looking like giant puddles. The waters receding but for some who live here its been a rough 24 hours.

When asked what it was like overnight, Pamela Scott, who lives on Largo Drive, said, Extremely windy, the house was vibrating, and the cans, everything downstairs got blown overVery, very bad storm.

Power was out for a few hours before crews got it back online in the morning.

For now, and over the next couple days, it's all about keeping warm.