South Bay, SOUTHEAST FLORIDA Big Pine Key. Ellaville. Venice, SOUTH FLORIDA Arcadia. Merritt Island NWR. There are long stretches with no shade, particularly between the north end of the Big Cypress Swamp and Orlando. Then this discussion group is for you. Cocoa Beach. Following the Kissimmee River floodplain, this is a scenic section of the Florida Trail with a mix of levees, shady woods, river views, open prairies, and cattle ranches. Stuart. Ridge Manor. Williston, MULTI-REGION Big Cypress Swamp. The full mileage of the Florida Trail, including its side options, is more than 1,400 miles. Melbourne Beach. Within each you’ll find information on hikes in that section. Section hiking the Florida Trail provides some logistical challenges, but a sense of satisfaction in being able to complete an 1,100-mile walk across Florida over time, A thru-hike in Florida takes 60-90 days through lush landscapes you won’t see on other long distance trails. Mount Dora. Then, take a left at the junction onto an unnamed refuge trail to head back west, continuing another 4.1 miles through pines to a junction at mile 10.4, where a left turn followed by a right at the next intersection will take you back to the starting point. Sebring. Leesburg. Our Mission: The Florida Trail Association builds, maintains, protects, and promotes the unique Florida National Scenic Trail (Florida Trail), along with a network of hiking trails throughout the state of Florida. Don’t leave that puffy jacket behind because this is Florida! Much of the effort of FTthruHIKE is to connect people together – hikers helping hikers – across the state of Florida. Everything you need to thru-hike the Florida Trail, all in one place This timing will allow you to miss some of the more unpredictable weather and deer-hunting seasons on public lands during the fall. Biscayne National Park. Branford. Hiking is on roads and levees. Read about permits in our Plan Your Hike section. Big Cypress Seminole Reservation. Key Largo. 376 pages. Hardcover, 196 pages. High Springs. THE FLORIDA TRAIL Thru Hiker Bring a sleeping bag that can handle 20F or below. Madison. Ocklawaha. Lake Placid. This is not optional for thru-hikers. Keystone Heights. But it’s not just about backpacking and camping. Geneva. Oviedo. Ellaville. With church involvement, local residents are becoming more aware of the trail that runs through their community. We still recommend carrying detailed water-resistant maps from the Florida Trail Association as a backup. Estero. Bunnell. Delray Beach. Suwannee Springs. There are other permits that can be arranged as you hike along. A: In order to qualify for the Florida Trail Association End-to-End certificate and patch you must walk the entire trail as it exists at the time of your hike. Crawfordville. Brandon. Port Mayaca. Dunnellon. Lakeland. Pine Island. Eglin Air Force Base. Largo. New Smyrna Beach. Salt Springs. You will also want to use hiking shoes or boots that ARE NOT waterproof, since water will get trapped in your boots and make a mess of your feet. Steinhatchee. Spanning more than 1,400 miles from Pensacola Beach to the edge of the Everglades, the Florida Trail is our statewide National Scenic Trail, one of only eleven long distance trails distinguished by this designation across America. Flagler Beach. Yes, there are parts of the trail that are excessively dry, just as there are parts that are quite wet. Sanford. So I certainly wasn’t taking down numbers or counting things as I went, other than miles. Jensen Beach. Niceville. Fortunately for Florida Trail thru-hikers, the most violent storms with the most lightning occur in the summer. In addition to several bike paths and the wild and scenic UWF-SRIA Dunes Preserve, the Seashore section of the Florida Trail walks you along a beach to the trail’s Northern Terminus. Chattahoochee. Fort Myers. 9) It’s smart to carry maps. Canaveral National Seashore. Destin. Dunedin. Low-cut gaiters are a good investment to keep sand out of your shoes. Yeehaw Junction, SOUTHWEST FLORIDA Bradenton . Frostproof. I kept a dead tree journal throughout my hike, but will not post a day by day account. Carrabelle. Port St. Lucie. Keystone Heights. The Trail. Marathon. Florida National Scenic Trail CENTRAL FLORIDA Apopka. Silver Springs. The Florida Trail Hikers Alliance is in the process of planning for the annual Florida Trail Kickoff. Hiking south to north is the usual progression of a thru-hiker in order to move in step with the change of season and with the expiration of general gun season (deer hunting season) on public lands. MAP USAGE: You may use our map if credited to FloridaHikes.com and, if shared online, linked back to this page. . Northeast Everglades Natural Area. St. Augustine. Stuart. This is a winter trail and while winter in Florida won’t leave you snow burned and post holing- it will leave you hypothermic. Wear a hat, bring sunglasses, and use sunscreen. Blackwater River State Forest. Inverness. Mosquitoes, ticks, and chiggers can be a problem year-round, although we like winter for hiking since we might have a freeze that knocks them out for a while. Most hikers take 60 to 90 days to complete the trail. The good news? Perry. Video journal & pictorial journal to give those interested in the Florida National Scenic Trail a feel for a thru-hike in Florida. Pahokee. Gulf Islands National Seashore. 77.9 miles. Islamorada. Redland. Dunnellon. Palm Bay. Punta Gorda. Tarpon Springs. Ocala National Forest. Oviedo. Everglades City. Charlotte Harbor. That way hikers can interact with volunteers statewide who help hikers out by placing water caches, helping with shuttles, and jumping in when an emergency happens. Sanibel Island. Take EVERYTHING. Hobe Sound. Naples. See FTA permit page for long list of special permit requirements. Panama City Beach. Palm Coast. A typical linear thru-hike is slightly more than 1,100 miles. Showcasing the best public lands, the Florida Trail walks you into the past between Palatka and Osceola National Forest, through rural farms and timber lands. Chipley. Davie. New Port Richey. Ormond Beach. Sopchoppy. Fort Lauderdale. Boca Raton. You have several options as you hike, and you can “choose one” to still count as a thru-hike: east or west around Lake Okeechobee, east or west around Central Florida, and west to the terminus at Fort Pickens or north to the Alabama border to connect to the Eastern Continental Trail. One of the most compelling sections of the Florida Trail for backpackers, Eglin offers rugged elevation changes and crystalline waterways. St. Tallahassee. Vero Beach. These trails are not part of the National Scenic Trail but connect to the Florida Trail. Basinger. Charlotte Harbor. Gulf Islands National Seashore. Melbourne Beach. Nonprofit Partner: Florida Trail Association. Dowling Park. Mount Dora. Palatka. The first go around I was a bit preoccupied with simply hiking, and enjoying the world Florida backwoods has to offer. Everglades National Park. Permits: As of July, 2016, you will need to organize some permits if you are thru-hiking the entire FT. For a detailed rundown of the hows, whys and wherefores on the permit situation, see ThruHikeFlorida.com. The best day hikes, overnights, and weekend trips on the Florida Trail. Invest in a good insect repellent and carry it with you. 2) Florida is wet. Talbot Islands. Jupiter. Port St. Lucie. Cloud. 6) Florida has roadwalks. LaBelle. They also work with local communities to help them understand that the folks walking through are there to enjoy the outdoors and to learn more about Florida. After your hike, you are welcome to apply for a Thousand Miler Award from FTthruHIKE to commemorate your achievement of completing more than 1,000 linear miles of the Florida Trail. Clewiston. 10) It’s smart to do your logistical planning in advance. Fisheating Creek. Remember, the Florida Trail is half the length of the Appalachian Trail and crosses two time zones. To do so, it hosts an annual Florida Trail Kickoff to gather thru-hikers together to meet each other and to facilitate rides to the otherwise remote Southern Terminus, which sits halfway between Miami and Naples in the middle of Florida’s biggest swamp. Quincy. Weeki Wachee. Brooksville. Big Cypress National Preserve. Jacksonville. Chipley. Drawing a growing number of section hikers and thru-hikers every year, it is the only long distance trail in the United States that is a winter destination, as winter is our prime season for backpacking in Florida. Along the Suwannee River, the Florida Trail clings to bluffs and scrambles through ravines for physical challenges and great scenery, 116.2 miles. Fort Walton Beach. Immokalee. Overseas Heritage Trail. Chattahoochee. It can be 83 degrees today and 43 degrees tomorrow. Walt Disney World. The birthplace of the Florida Trail and home of the world’s largest sand pine scrub forest, the Ocala section is Florida’s top backpacking destination, 241 miles. Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail. Volunteers are the heart and soul of the Florida Trail Association. Hiking the Florida Trail is unlike hiking any of the other National Scenic Trails in the United States, starting with the terrain. Everglades National Park. Boynton Beach. My decision t Belleview. Englewood. Withlacoochee State Forest. Bushnell. DeFuniak Springs. 376 pages. Key Biscayne. Basinger. Talbot Islands. Coast to Coast Trail. Redland. Sarasota. Our virtual walk along the length of the Florida Trail, covering more than 1,500 miles from the Everglades to Pensacola Beach. In addition to a very active Facebook group called Florida Trail Hikers, each year FTthruHIKE manages a private group of current year thru and section hikers. Chiefland. Crystal River. A record pace of 28d 9h 59m, beating Tatu-Joe’s 2012 hike by more than a full day.It was an honor to hike Joe’s hike, as he is one of those folks I very much look up to in this backpacking world. We get freezing temps in the panhandle… so be prepared. Miami. Florida. Freeport. You need to pack prepared for a full range of weather. Longwood. White Springs. Bushnell. Different, but not the challenge that Big Cypress smacks you with right off the bat. Milton. Pine Island. They will send you a thru-hiker pack with information on the hike, including forms that are required to be filled out for the Seminole Indian Reservation as well as the Eglin Air Force Base. If you’ve hiked on the AT, PCT, or CDT, you’ll see more familiar faces than you’d expect. Micanopy. The comprehensive mile-by-mile guidebook to planning section and thru-hikes along the entire length of the Florida Trail. We founded the Florida Trail Hikers Alliance to encourage more people to hike our 1,400-mile National Scenic Trail, the Florida Trail, and to provide you resources to help you accomplish that goal. Crestview. Dade City. Consider treating your clothing with permetherin in advance of your hike for added protection. It’s unlikely it will snow during your hike, but you can certainly experience freezing temperatures, especially in the Panhandle. Olustee. Cedar Key. We post updates to the current edition of our guidebook on our Facebook page for it at The Florida Trail Guide and, cumulatively, on our website under Florida Trail Updates. 112.8 miles. 3) Florida is sandy. Mayo. We’ve been writing books about the Florida Trail since 2003, including our seventh guidebook to the entire trail, so you can count on us as a trusted source of information. Must join the Florida Trail Association to cross private property on trail segments. Longwood. 4) Florida has bugs. A thru-hike in Florida takes 60-90 days through lush landscapes you won’t see on other long distance trails. Florida Trail statistics from my second thru hike! Belleview. Ponce De Leon. While the Florida Trail will never be the Appalachian Trail in terms of volume of thru-hikers – nor could it support it – we are heartened to see the Florida Trail hiker community begin to blossom. There are less than 250 miles of roadwalks along the entire Florida Trail. Ebro. Panama City Beach. Geneva. Port Charlotte. $24.95 + tax and shipping. Davie. Lakeport. Timucuan Preserve. New Port Richey. Thru-hiker Tally: Around 150, recent years have seen about 15-20 thru-hikes completed. Titusville . Online Resources: In addition to the FTA website mentioned above, both Florida Hikes and Thru Hike Florida have very useful planning pages. 356 pages, $18.95 + tax and shipping. Sarasota. 180 shares. DeBary. 7) Some permits are required. Unlike the Appalachian Trail, you can’t just follow the blazes – which, by the way, are orange along the length of the Florida Trail. Lake Okeechobee. By registering with FTthruHIKE, you’ll also be able to join the current “Class of” Facebook group to communicate with fellow hikers up and down the trail. The official northern terminus is at Fort Pickens in Gulf Islands National Seashore. 61 miles. Immokalee. Tampa. Permitting Information: A few landowners require advanced notification and permits to cross their land. Largo. We created the above map using our trail data from our interactive map inside the Guthook Guides app / Florida National Scenic Trail segment, copyright 2020 by Guthook Guides & Florida Hikes. Coral Gables. Palatka-Lake Butler Trail. It is essential that you notify the Florida Trail Association office a minimum of 30 days before starting a thru-hike. Deland. Port Mayaca. Branford. St. Petersburg. Amelia Island. Orlando. Trenton. said he was going to “walk off the war” after returning from World War II, and four months later became the first person to hike the entire Appalachian Trail. 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. Full hike descriptions and maps, full color. A lot of them. Jacksonville. Biscayne Bay. Sebastian. Thru Hike the Florida Trail. Biscayne Bay. Fort Lauderdale. Let FTthruHIKE know that you’re planning a thru-hike or working on a section hike of the Florida Trail. Port Charlotte. Updates to our current edition of The Florida Trail Guide (Third Edition, published October 2017), keyed to pages and mileage numbers in each segment of the trail presented through the book. DeFuniak Springs. Join here. Winter storms are mild, unless your hike runs into April when spring storms begin hitting the far western end of Florida (see above). Hardcover, 196 pages. Palm Coast. Q: If I am thru-hiking the trail, do I have to hike the roadwalks? Dade City. East Coast Greenway. You can also download a current data book from the FTA website, accumulate between editions of our guidebook. Lake Butler.Lake City. It is usually held somewhere in the Orlando section. There are three stretches of trail where a permit is absolutely, positively, required and you can and will be escorted off the trail if you are caught without one: Crossing the Big Cypress Seminole Reservation (private tribal land), camping on St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge (federal land), and crossing/camping Eglin Air Force Base (military base). High Springs. $24.95 + tax and shipping. Some thru-hikers complete the Florida Trail as a portion of a much longer hike, the Eastern Continental Trail. The only thing we love more than trails is volunteers! Launch Interactive Map Spring Hill. You’ll find those here. Before you go on your hike you will need to contact the Florida Trail Association. Short advice on Florida Trail Gear? South Walton. Florida National Scenic Trail CENTRAL FLORIDA Apopka. Perry. Timucuan Preserve. DeBary. 56.2 miles. Sopchoppy. St. Marks. Orange Park. Key West. Key Largo. $24.95 + tax and shipping. Hollywood. Vernon. It doesn’t hurt that it’s the biggest hiker feed on the Florida Trail during hiking season. Palm Beach. LaBelle. St. Petersburg. Bonifay. Englewood. I was on trail with him for 100 miles going NOBO from the Southern terminus so I got a little taste as well. I’m in just my underwear, up to my chest in very cold black water, the sound of a big fast gun is going off extremely close to me as the sun is going down and I’m quickly realizing this is not a situation I am prepared for. If you’re planning a Florida Trail thru-hike, there are some important facts about Florida that you need to know. Lakeland. Katana and I have been hiking together since our maiden thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail in 2014. Frostproof. Vernon. All the time. Boca Raton. There are segments of the Florida Trail that make enjoyable day hikes, and there are portions shared with bike routes that work well for cyclists. Hike Bike Paddle Camp Florida with authors Sandra Friend and John Keatley as your guides. Tarpon Springs. If you are planning to thru-hike starting January 2019, this is a great way to begin your journey. East Coast Greenway. South Bay, SOUTHEAST FLORIDA Big Pine Key. Merritt Island. 32.3 miles. $24.95 + tax and shipping. Mayo. Apalachicola National Forest. A side effect of the growth of this “trail angel” community – folks who generally prefer to stay anonymous except to the hikers they’re helping out – is that certain churches along the trail have taken on hiker support as a part of their mission and outreach. It’s the most dangerous thru-hike in the country, and it covers the entire state of (where else?) Homestead. At any time, you can apply to join Florida Trail Hikers, a general Florida Trail discussion group on Facebook, but be sure to answer the questions to be approved. 98.3 miles. This is a great place to talk to hikers who’ve completed the Florida Trail, including Billy Goat, and those actively working on their thru and section hikes. When you complete your hike, also be sure to download the End-to-End Application, fill it out, and send it in to the Florida Trail Association, and they will issue a certificate and patch for your accomplishment. Kenansville. Withlacoochee State Trail. Jensen Beach. The Florida Trail Association has a thru-hiker packet available for download. Fernandina Beach. De Leon Springs. Situated within the Juniper Wilderness Area and part of the Ocala National Forest, this stretch of the Florida Trail is home to scrub forests, young oaks, pines, and prairies. Deland. Lake Placid. But it's crowded for good reason. Suwannee River Wilderness Trail. Olustee. Withlacoochee State Forest. If you’re considering such a quest, check out our details about the ECT here. Dowling Park. Following in the footsteps of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and ALDHA (Appalachian Trail Long Distance Hikers Association), we acknowledge completions as “Thousand Milers.” From the trailhead, hike east along the FT (follow the orange blazes) for 6.3 miles past estuaries, tidal creeks, and lowlands. Starke. Ocean to Lake Greenway. Kenansville. Amelia Island. If you want more info please feel free to message us. Depending on where you are in Florida, mosquitoes can carry some real nasty tropical diseases, including Zika. Green Cove Springs. Chuluota. Experience the North Country Trail is the next big thing in thru-hiking. (Not just any trail in Florida but THE Florida Trail, our National Scenic Trail). White Springs. Boynton Beach. Lake Wales. Lake Butler.Lake City. Brandon. You MUST arrange certain permits in advance. Crystal River. Bristol. After hiking the Pinhoti Trail, Collegiate Peaks Loop of the Colorado Trail, and the Benton MacKaye Trail in 2019, I begin 2020 with a thru hike of the Florida National Scenic Trail. Bunnell. Volunteering With The Florida Trail Association. Silver Springs. Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail. Coral Gables. Big Cypress Seminole Reservation. Sean Gobin after returning home from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, thru hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2012 and then founded Warrior Expeditions. Venice, SOUTH FLORIDA Arcadia. A hiking route spanning more than 4,800 miles along the East Coast, the Eastern Continental Trail spends nearly 1,300 miles crossing Florida from its southern terminus at the Southernmost Point in Key West. We celebrated the trail’s 50th anniversary in 2016 by compiling its long and storied history into a book. This map-based app works offline and in airplane mode when you’re out on the trail. Volunteers place water caches along the trail during hiking season and pop up as trail angels for hikers in need. Clermont. Yeehaw Junction, SOUTHWEST FLORIDA Bradenton . NORTHWEST FLORIDA Apalachicola. End to End Roster. Everglades City. This is our current overview map of the Florida Trail, our National Scenic Trail in Florida.Florida Trail Overview Map 2018. There are many opportunities for Boy Scouts to complete hiking and backpacking merit badges and 50-miler awards along the Florida Trail; this list will start you planning your next trip. Overseas Heritage Trail. Merritt Island NWR. To dispel the rumors about the types of roadwalks you’ll encounter along the Florida Trail – because frankly, not all of them are all that bad – here’s our YouTube playlist of the roadwalks that Sandra wrapped up in January 2019 so she could finally claim an end-to-end hike of the Florida Trail. The Pinhoti was special because I was born and reared in Alabama. Mossy Head. Once you get through it, nothing else is quiet as tough. The same is true for any of our section maps. St. Marks NWR. Macclenny. Hike Bike Paddle Camp Florida with authors Sandra Friend and John Keatley as your guides, A thru-hike in Florida takes 60-90 days through lush landscapes you won’t see on other long distance trails. Since 1966, the Florida Trail has been Florida’s biggest destination for backpackers, with hundreds of trailheads and access points, most within an hour of most major cities in Florida. Over the past six years, attendance has skyrocketed from a couple of dozen hikers to more than 125. Clearwater Beach. Monticello. Thru Hike the Florida Trail A thru-hike in Florida takes 60-90 days through lush landscapes you won’t see on other long distance trails We’ve been writing books about the Florida Trail since 2003, including our seventh guidebook to the entire trail , so you can count on us as a trusted source of information. Mims. Our virtual walk along the length of the Florida Trail, covering more than 1,500 miles from the Everglades to Pensacola Beach. St. Marks NWR. Inverness. Hiking 1,108 miles southbound down Florida, from Pensacola to deep into the everglades west of Miami. Lake Mary. We like Dirty Girl gaiters. Roadwalks – and the occasional use of paved bike paths in urban areas – can be very tough on your feet, especially combined with the dampness and the sand that you’ll find everywhere. 38.3 miles. St. Marks. Coast to Coast Trail. Cocoa Beach. Islamorada. If you’re planning a day hike, an overnighter, a long section, or a thru-hike, we’re here to help. Moore Haven. Palm Bay. De Leon Springs. Eglin Air Force Base. It’s patterned after The AT Guide in format, replacing elevation profiles (irrelevant here) with rough maps. Punta Gorda. 45.5 miles. This includes all roadwalks, if that is where the trail is routed at the time. Ponce De Leon. Wewahitchka NORTH FLORIDA Alachua. Blackwater River State Forest. Ridge Manor. Leesburg. Hollywood. Miami. Crestview. Ding Darling NWR. Palm Beach. Mossy Head. With segments linking Withlacoochee State Forest and the Cross Florida Greenway, the Western Corridor provides access to wild spaces between Tampa and Ocala. Clearwater Beach. 99.3 miles. Cape San Blas. Pensacola. Orlando. Winter Springs. The NCT will not only be one of the longest trails in the country, it will also connect to numerous other systems, including the Appalachian Trail, the Ohio Buckeye Trail, and more. We have a comprehensive guidebook, The Florida Trail Guide, which can help you with that. Osceola National Forest. Steinhatchee. Gainesville. Big Cypress National Preserve. Fernandina Beach. 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. Green Cove Springs. Navarre Beach . Pensacola. Weeki Wachee. Dunedin. Since the Florida Trail stretches from one end of Florida to the other, we have broken up information on it by sections within regions. These are not optional. Brooksville. The comprehensive mile-by-mile guidebook to planning section and thru-hikes along the entire length of the Florida Trail. Baldwin. Blountstown. Baldwin. Learn more about hiking in Florida. Tampa. Lake Okeechobee. Salt Springs. Monticello. Marianna. Chiefland. Florida Keys. Orange Park. Part 1 of 3, The Florida Trail thru hike begins! Jupiter. Spring Hill. Suwannee River Wilderness Trail. The best day hikes, overnights, and weekend trips on the Florida Trail. NORTHWEST FLORIDA Apalachicola. Walt Disney World. Moore Haven. Williston, MULTI-REGION Big Cypress Swamp. Delray Beach. Who’s hiking the Florida Trail? Many of the roadwalks are on quiet back roads. Stretching from the Big Cypress Seminole Reservation to Lake Okeechobee, the Florida Trail Seminole section traverses a vast agricultural region, the former Everglades. Juno Beach. Navarre Beach . Canaveral National Seashore. To avoid last-minute headaches, you’ll want to ensure that you have all of this taken care of at least 30 days before you plan to head out. Florida’s largest national forest, Apalachicola is a very lush place, which means soggy feet and spectacular botanical diversity south of Tallahassee. This grassroots nonprofit organization is made up of hikers helping hikers throughout the state. Deltona. Thru-hikers and day hikers alike enjoy this 8.4-mile section of the trail, making it more crowded than other areas. Milton. Ocala. Fort Myers. Wakulla. Bristol. Lakeport. Ocean to Lake Greenway. Okeechobee. Welaka. West of the Apalachicola River, the Florida Trail stitches a series of public lands together along the corridor of the Northwest Florida Greenway. Florida Keys. Naples. Live Oak. Fisheating Creek. Even when we have droughts that dry up water sources, humidity is still heavy in the air. Alex Thru Hikes the Florida Trail. You can buy an excellent set of maps from the Florida Trail Association. Niceville. Tampa is the lightning capital of the United States and nearly every storm in Florida has lightning. Carrabelle. She was three years old and I was 24. Christmas. Pahokee. Mims. As you dig into the details we present for each of the trail sections along the Florida Trail, check the bottom of each section page for our tips on how to cope with things like keeping your water filter clean and avoiding poisonous tropical plants (hint: both are important to know when hiking the Big Cypress section). Starke. Daytona Beach. Discover the hundreds of hiking opportunities it offers statewide. Sebastian. Blountstown. Ocala National Forest. Guthook Guides Comprehensive logistics and offline maps for the Florida National Scenic Trail. You will find it necessary, most days, to pack up a wet tent in the morning and stake it out to dry when you have a chance to take a break in the sunshine. No matter whether you buy a book or not, you can sign up for our mailing list there to get periodic trail updates in your inbox. Marianna. Marathon. Shorts may seem great for hiking, but you’ll tear your legs up on briers in sections that aren’t heavily maintained. The official southern terminus of the Florida Trail is at Oasis Visitor Center in Big Cypress National Preserve. Wakulla. Winter Springs. Full hike descriptions and maps, full color. 1) Florida’s weather is unpredictable in winter. For thru-hikers planning to walk the 1,300-plus miles of the Florida Trail, the hiking season begins in early January at the Southern Terminus of the FT. Spanning from the Ocala National Forest south through the prairies of Osceola County, the Orlando section of the Florida Trail encompasses the eastern suburbs of the Orlando metro, 72.3 miles. A few of them are along dangerous state and U.S. highways. Featuring the wettest, wildest wilderness traversed by backpackers in Florida, the Florida Trail in Big Cypress National Preserve is both beautiful and extraordinarily challenging. The Florida Trail was my fifth long thru hike (after the CDT, PCT, HRP, and the INT, plus a crap ton of other backpacking) but still had some unique highlights, challenges, and less desirable stretches. 8) You MUST join the Florida Trail Association. The Florida Trail still crosses some stretches of private land where the corridor is negotiated between the Florida Trail Association and private landowners. Christmas. Yes, you will see alligators and snakes (see our info on Hiking in Florida for details on how to cope with that). Hiking the Florida Trail is unlike hiking any of the other National Scenic Trails in the United States, starting with the terrain. We spend about 15 pages in our guidebook covering other essentials like “how and where to filter water” and “how to get to and from the termini.”. Fort Walton Beach. Merritt Island. Juno Beach. Including side trails and alternate routes, it is a trail network now encompassing 1,400 miles, although a thru-hike consists of 1,100 miles from end to end. Palatka. Learn more about FTthruHIKE and its programs. It’s called called Billy Goat Day – in honor of the one and only Billy Goat, one of America’s top long distance hikers – and is held the last Saturday in January. In partnership with Guthook Guides (iPhone) and Atlas Guides (Android), we provide the details behind the Florida National Scenic Trail app within Guthook Guides. Wewahitchka NORTH FLORIDA Alachua. The thru-hike video (2016) combines our images with those of fellow long distance hikers. The Pinhoti was special because I was born and reared in Alabama. Quincy. Attempting a thru-hike during the height of general gun (deer) hunting season will either force you to hike 30-50 miles between campgrounds, stay in local motels, or camp illegally and be subject to fines and/or being escorted off the property. Crawfordville. Trenton. Expect damp cold when it is cold.
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