Way down under the Withlacoochee State Forest, there’s a whole other world waiting to be explored.
Inverness offers an array of hiking, backpacking, and cycling opportunities in the Withlacoochee State Forest and on the Withlacoochee State Trail. Paddlers take to the Withlacoochee River and the many lakes in the region.
Home to the Withlacoochee State Forest and near to Weeki Wachee Spring, Brooksville is the county seat of Hernando County, founded in the 1840s
The seat of Sumter County, Bushnell is surrounded by agricultural lands and conservation lands along the basins of the Withlacoochee River and the Green Swamp.
The southernmost concentration of ancient longleaf pine in America, the Big Pine Tract of Chinsegut WEA is also the second largest contiguous tract of old-growth longleaf pine in Florida.
At Chinsegut WEA, the Nature Center Tract is a birder’s delight. Sandhill cranes are common in May’s Prairie, which the loop trail circles for a 2 mile hike.
One of Florida’s longest backpacking loops – and the longest within a single piece of public land – the Citrus Hiking Trail offers up to 43 miles of rugged and interesting terrain near Inverness
In downtown Inverness, Cooter Pond Park is a great place for birding and watching the turtles beneath the extensive boardwalk over the pond.
Known for its beautiful springs and as a gathering place for manatees, Crystal River shows off coastal habitats in its many parks and along its waterways.
The Second Seminole War began amid the longleaf pines at Dade Battlefield Historic State Park, where on December 25, 1835, Major Francis Dade left Fort Brooke – located in what would become Tampa -and led his troops north on the military road to Fort King, Ocala.
At the confluence of the Rainbow River and the Withlacoochee River, Dunnellon is an outpost for adventures in the woods and on the water, where the Cross Florida Greenway and Withlacoochee State Trail meet.