The landward side of Fort Pickens has a dry ditch, with a counterscarp wall and glacis, which protected the main fort wall from direct cannon fire, and provided another position for infantry to defend the fort from (the "covered way"). The ditch was previously much deeper than at present. The original depth can be visualized with the knowledge that the stairs leading to the covered way meet at the orignal level of the bottom of the ditch. The seaward side of Fort Pickens also had a dry ditch, which was filled sometime in the past.

The landward side of Fort Pickens has a dry ditch, with a counterscarp wall and glacis, which protected the main fort wall from direct cannon fire, and provided another position for infantry to defend the fort from (the “covered way”). The ditch was previously much deeper than at present. The original depth can be visualized with the knowledge that the stairs leading to the covered way meet at the orignal level of the bottom of the ditch. The seaward side of Fort Pickens also had a dry ditch, which was filled sometime in the past.