Last week, the morning temperatures were in the 60s in Central Florida, prompting us to go outside and do a little exploring. You may have read yesterday’s blog post by JK on our ramble through Lake Jesup Wilderness, where the far loop obviously hasn’t been maintained in a long time. There are a few tricky things about getting back out on the trails in the fall:
1) Big spiderwebs from golden orb spiders. There’s a reason part of the Cross Florida Greenway is called “Spider Kingdom.” Carry a stick to clear the path; try and duck under webs when you can.
2) Weird weather. It might be cool, it might be hot. It might rain. Who knows? It’s still hurricane season, too. Keep on eye on forecasts when planning your outings.
3) Persistent pests. It’ll be a while before it gets chilly enough to kill off the chiggers, ticks, and mosquitoes, so continue to use insect spray liberally. I picked up a few annoying bites on Friday, having gone out without protection.
4) Unmaintained trails. Although there are a lot of hardy trail maintainers out there, most do not continue to clear vegetation all summer. Weeds sprout like … weeds. It may be tricky to find the footpath. You can always pitch in, of course. The Florida Trail Association is always looking for volunteers to work on the trails, and your Florida State Parks need help as well.
Nevertheless, it’s time to hike! Watch this website for news or subscribe to the eNews to get hiking news sent to you regularly all hiking season. See you on a trail!