Hiking around Hopkins Prairie for the third time, I have my first encounter with the Rainbow People and meet backpackers along this scenic stretch of the Florida Trail.
What did the Juniper Prairie Wilderness look like before the fires of 2009? Here’s what I photographed on a hike just a few weeks before the devastating blaze.
Take a peek at what might have been the very original route of the Florida Trail along the west side of Clearwater Lake on the Clearwater Lake Loop
8.6 miles. Dive deep into the world’s largest sand pine scrub forest on this hike through the Big Scrub.
Paralleling a segment of the Cross Florida Barge Canal, the Buckman Lock to Rodman Dam hike on of the Florida Trail sticks to a high berm for most of the 5.3 miles.
The oldest section of the Florida Trail runs 11 miles between between Clearwater Lake and Alexander Springs in the Ocala National Forest, showcasing longleaf pine forests and scrub
9.6 miles. Sweeping along the shoreline of one of the largest prairies in the Ocala National Forest, this section of the Florida Trail lingers on prairie panoramas.
Winding along and around a mosaic of both dry and wet prairies that make up the Farles Prairie complex, this 8.5 mile segment of the Florida Trail provides a deep immersion into the Big Scrub
10.6 miles. One of the few designated wilderness areas that the Florida Trail traverses, the Juniper Prairie Wilderness in the Ocala National Forest is a wildlife-rich mosaic of ancient scrub forests, pine islands, and broad open prairies.
One of the most scenic segments of the Florida Trail, the hike from Pat’s Island to Hidden Pond immerses you in the Big Scrub en route to an oasis in Florida’s desert.
Providing a fine balance between the Big Scrub habitats and breathtaking old-growth longleaf pines, the Florida Trail from Rodman to Lake Delancy is simply superb.
10.4 miles. Crossing a patchwork of scrub ridges and longleaf pine islands, the Florida Trail makes its way southwest of Salt Springs around Lake Kerr.