Encompassing the sweep of Florida west of the Suwannee River, the Florida Trail through Northwest Florida offers some of the most dramatic panoramas and rugged terrain you’ll find while hiking in Florida.
From coastal views along the Big Bend and Pensacola Beach to tangled black gum and titi swamps and the delights of climbing in and out of steephead ravines, this is a part of Florida that surprises and delights all hikers.
Following the Florida Trail through the Panhandle, you’ll discover that Florida certainly isn’t flat or boring when it comes to hiking.
This region has a mix of expansive protected wild places in public lands along coastlines and rivers, massive acreage in farms and pine plantations, and a light population except along the beaches from Panama City Beach west.
Each of the below sections correspond to a smaller segment of the Florida Trail in this region, from east to west (Tallahassee to Pensacola).
116.2 miles. After crossing rural farms and forests in the Big Bend, the Florida Trail reveals the secrets of the Aucilla River before tracing the Gulf coastline at St. Marks NWR
77.9 miles. Florida’s largest national forest, Apalachicola is a very lush place, which means soggy feet and spectacular botanical diversity south of Tallahassee.
99.3 miles. West of the Apalachicola River, the Florida Trail stitches a series of public lands together along the corridor of the Northwest Florida Greenway.
98.3 miles. One of the most compelling sections of the Florida Trail for backpackers, Eglin offers rugged elevation changes and crystalline waterways.
45.5 miles. The Blackwater section of the Florida Trail walks you through Atlantic white cedar and longleaf pine forests, pitcher plant bogs and titi swamps en route to the Alabama border.
NORTH << Eastern Continental Trail SOUTH >> North Florida