One of Titusville’s hidden gems, this linear paved path atop the Atlantic Coast Ridge immerses you in a ribbon of sand pine scrub for most of its length.
At its north end, it’s signposted as the Wuesthoff Trail and connects to the parking area at Wuestoff Park on the west side of Barna Ave. In fact, the trail extends right through Wuesthoff Park to the Highlands neighborhood.
The south end is signposted as the City of Titusville Multi Use Trail in the Imperial Estates neighborhood, within sight of Imperial Estates Elementary. There is no parking at that end.
Plan for a round-trip out of the Wuesthoff Park trailhead, and get ready for a surprisingly immersive experience. The forest crowds in closely for much of the route. Limited traffic noise impacts the ridgetop.
Protecting an uplands recharge area for drinking water resources, the sand pine scrub stretches more than a half mile east, contiguous to Dicerandra Scrub Sanctuary.
Dicerandra thinicola, a mint species found nowhere else in the world but Titusville, grows in these fine sands. Expect to encounter gopher tortoises, deer, and other wildlife crossing the paved path.
Resources for exploring the area
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Length: 3.2 miles round-trip
Trailhead: 28.55616, -80.824629
Address: 2000 Wuesthoff St, Titusville
Restroom: At the Homer Powell Nature Center in Wuesthoff Park
Land manager: City of Titusville
Open dawn to dusk. No motorized vehicles. No pets permitted.
Bicycles welcome. Use caution on the sharp turns and downhills. All are marked.
Do not remove vegetation from the preserve.
From the Interstate 95 interchange for SR 50 in Titusville, follow SR 50 east for 1.5 miles to Barna Ave. Turn right at the light and continue past the bank and apartment complex to the first road on the right, Wuesthoff St. Follow that road to where it terminates in the parking lot for Wuesthoff Park.
Starting from the parking area at Wuesthoff Park, follow the marked bike lane along Wuesthoff St to Barna Ave. Turn right. The broad bike path reaches a crosswalk.
Cross Barna Ave at these signs, just south of the fire station. The Wuesthoff Trail sign adjoins the path leading along the edge of the fire station.
Follow the trail past the posts. Past the fire station, the paved path sweeps right and uphill at a dirt road crossing for wellfield access.
Pass a park bench on the left after 0.4 mile. The trail continues to ascend through the sand pine scrub, bounded in places by invasive cogongrass.
Curving just enough so you can’t see what’s ahead, you pass an oak hammock on the left before another straightaway climb.
An old directional sign is overpainted with a subtle but colorful artistic rendering of a moth. The first crossroad lies ahead.
Each of these crossroads span from Barna Ave uphill and across the trail for city vehicles to access wellheads throughout the preserve.
Making an obvious downhill from the crossroad, the trail dips through a low spot on the ridge before ascending more sharply.
At 0.6 mile, the trail reaches the next crossing point. A road sign after indicates the curves up ahead.
After another dip, the trail resumes its climb beneath tall sand pines towards the high point of this hike.
Scrub plum and scrub hickory grow in the understory beneath the sand pines. Both have diminutive leaves.
Snaking uphill, the trail reaches its next crossroad at 45 feet elevation on the pine-topped ridge.
The sand pines on the edge of the ridge above the residences on Barna stand on promontories up to 65 feet above sea level.
From this point, 0.8 mile into the hike, the trail makes an obvious downhill, curving as it does so.
Sweeping past the next bench, set under a bower of oaks, the trail climbs a little before the next descent.
A dirt road comes in from the right before the path enters an open area at 1 mile, the paved trail circling around a water structure.
Healthy sand pine scrub borders both sides of the trail, with coastalplain palafox and several varieties of mint growing in clearings.
The trail reaches a 90-degree trail at 1.2 miles, where sand roads continue in the other compass directions at the junction with the tall sand pines and the cabbage palm.
This is the point where the public land to the east shrinks to a slender strip, just enough to buffer noise from the adjoining neighborhood.
The trail climbs through an oak scrub with an extremely dense understory. Native lantana grows along a curve just before the trail reaches the powerline.
At 1.4 miles, the trail is no longer a place of beauty but a utilitarian connector between and behind neighborhood fences. If you’re not looking for miles but beauty, turn around here.
The trail stays under the powerline on the top of the ridge before reaching a T intersection. To the right, a 300′ path descends into the Oaktrails neighborhood.
Turn left. The broad path is adjoined by vine-draped fences on the right and a slender strip of forest on the left.
At 1.6 miles, the trail ends at Kathy Drive in Imperial Estates, within sight of Imperial Elementary School.
At this end of the paved path, there is a large sign that calls it the City of Titusville Multi Use Trail.
Turn around and retrace your route back to Wuesthoff Park to complete a 3.2 mile hike.
John’s article about cycling the City of Titusville Multi Use Trail
Learn more about Wuesthoff Park, the starting point for this hike. It has its own (flat) segment of the Wuesthoff Trail as well as a marsh boardwalk and natural footpath loop.
See our photos from the Wuesthoff Trail
More worth exploring while you’re in this area.
Named for the rare Titusville mint that grows only along the high ground inland from the lagoon, Dicerandra Scrub offers refuge for Florida scrub-jays.
It’s not rocket science: the first and finest of the Brevard Environmental Endangered Lands, Enchanted Forest Sanctuary in Titusville is a fabulous destination for family hiking.
The eastern terminus of the state-spanning Coast to Coast Trail is in the trail town of Titusville, where a ride on the Brevard Coast to Coast Trail provides cyclists the best ride in the county