In addition to the accessible trails at the Apalachicola NERR Visitor Center, there is another trail within walking distance that delves more deeply into the coastal forest.
The Cat Point Trail leads from mixed-pine flatwoods to the edge of tidal creeks and salt marsh habitat bordering the Apalachicola Bay.
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Length: 0.5 mile loop
Trailhead: 29.72760, -84.88995
Restroom: At the visitor center
Land manager: Apalachicola NERR
Open daily 9 AM to 4 PM. Leashed dogs welcome.
Approaching Eastpoint from either Carrabelle or Apalachicola along US 98, keep alert for the intersection with Island Drive, which leads to the bridge to St. George Island. The entrance to the Apalachicola NERR parking area is on the left just after you pass Patton Drive and before you reach the bridge.
After crossing Island Drive from the parking lot, walk along S Bay Shore Drive for approximately 100 yards to the kiosk on the south side of the road.
Circling the upland portion of more than 60 acres protected by the Cat Point Tract of Apalachicola NERR, this trail explores the gradient of habitats while keeping your feet dry.
Most of the property is made up of salt marsh, tidal pools and creeks, and is bordered by an uninhabited beach which curls around the southwest side of the peninsula.
Oaks, palmettos, and an occasional hickory line the few ridges, and pine flatwoods and a red maple-bay wetland make up the rest.
The half mile loop around the flatwoods allows for glimpses of marsh and water, but you won’t get your feet wet. It makes for a good birding location as well.
Thanks to Peyton Aubin with the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve, part of FDEP’s Florida Coastal Office, for providing this hike .
More worth exploring while you’re in this area.
A delightful destination for learning about Apalachicola Bay, the headquarters of Apalachicola NERR boasts a nature center and more than a half mile of gentle interpretive trails
A sweeping view of the Apalachicola River estuary waits like a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow on this beautiful nature trail and boardwalk
One of Florida’s more enormous state forests with over 202,000 acres, Tate’s Hell is a vast coastal swamp sliced and diced by timber barons before being preserved by the state