Florida’s National Scenic Trail
1,400 miles. Hundreds of trailheads and campsites. Wilderness escapes and urban walks. Swamps and beaches. The Florida Trail is a study in contrasts, a scenic pathway that connects you with a unique mosaic of landscapes in one of the most botanically diverse states in America.
We're Sandra Friend and John Keatley, publishers of FloridaHikes.com, founders of the Florida Trail Hikers Alliance, and authors of The Florida Trail Guide and the Florida Trail app. We're avid hikers who have many thousands of miles behind us in Florida and beyond. The Florida Trail has been our home turf since we were kids, back in the days when it was brand new.
Join us as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Florida Trail this year by inspiring you to hike our state's most notable footpath more often.
The Florida Trail: The Book
Foreword by Jim Kern
Afterword by Carlos Schomaker
Edited by Linda “Earthworm” Patton
Botanical expertise by Rick Ehle
Published by Watula Press
Printed in the United States
9x12", 228 pages, full color
725 color images
79 black & white images
Limited edition: 250 hardcover, 700 softcover.
ABOUT THIS PROJECT
More than a decade ago, prior to the 40th Anniversary Celebration of the Florida Trail, Sandra started taking notes and organizing images that told the story of the Florida Trail's inception. One slide show and a handful of interviews happened during that historic event. Three years ago, knowing the 50th anniversary was an important milestone for the Florida Trail and the Florida Trail Association, we started interviewing FTA members and past hikers in person and via email. We also started hiking pieces of the trail to update our own photo archives, which stretch back seventeen years, and to enjoy new personal experiences on the trail.
In 2015, FTA member Rick Lippert of E-Z Photo Scan worked with us to donate permanent digitization of the photo archives at the Florida Trail Association. We started showing key images to long-time FTA members to help with identifying people in them. In addition to cooperation from the Florida Trail Association, some members we interviewed allowed us to scan their own personal images and artifacts, and for that we are very grateful.
The result is a book that provides an inside look at both the Florida Trail's growth over the past five decades, and at the Florida Trail Association's history through the eyes of its members, weaving in some of our own personal memoirs about our involvement with the trail since the 1970s. Hundreds of people contributed to the making of this book, which celebrates the history and culture of Florida's National Scenic Trail.