Pa-Hay-Okee is the Seminole word for “River of Grass,” the name Marjorie Stoneman Douglas bestowed on the Everglades while advocating to have the region protected as a National Park. This trail is a short boardwalk leading to a tall observation tower. Both provide a close-up look at the “River of grass.”
Location: Everglades National Park
Length: 0.2 miles
Lat-Long: 25.440845, -80.783370
Fees / Permits: park entrance fee
Bug factor: moderate
From the Ernest Coe Visitor Center, follow the Main Park Road for 21 miles towards Flamingo. Turn right at the sign for Mahogany Hammock and follow the road for 1.7 miles to the parking area at the trailhead.
Start at the boardwalk entrance on the right and follow the boardwalk out into the sawgrass prairie. Climb the staircase to the observation tower, which is surrounded by cypress trees and stands atop a small tree island. From this shady perch, you can see incredible vistas across the prairie. Look straight down to see more water-filled solution holes. They are often the only water source for wildlife during the dry season. A boardwalk ramp leads you through the cypress canopy and back down to the forest floor. The trail ends at the end of the parking area.