5 Florida Trails to Explore During the Coronavirus

5 Florida Trails to Explore During the Coronavirus

Gerald Lombardo
Posted by Gerald Lombardo
Updated on
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Published in Things To Do

Socially distanced outdoor exercise is encouraged even now during the coronavirus. Rather than visiting crowded gyms, those nervous about the coronavirus may enjoy exploring some of Florida’s great biking and hiking trails.

Loxahatchee River Paddling Trail
The swift and twisting Loxahatchee River is worthy of its status as Florida's first National Wild and Scenic RiverTrapper Nelson's cabin is a point of interest near the trail's terminus in Jonathan Dickinson State Park near Stuart. The coffee-colored stream meanders through an unspoiled subtropical river swamp where bald cypress pond apple orchids and ferns line the shores. The 8.5-mile paddling trail makes for an ideal day-long adventure for intermediate or experienced paddlers.

Nature Coast State Trail

Adventure awaits visitors on this history-rich trail. Providing an excellent opportunity to ride off the beaten path this 32-mile trail consists of two primary alignments built along former rail lines that meet at Wilcox Junction. A historic train trestle carries the trail across the Suwannee River near Old Town. Trail users can cool off in 72-degree water in nearby Fanning Springs State Park or watch for more wildlife at Andrews Wildlife Management Area.

Blackwater Heritage State Trail

Hikers cyclists and equestrians who visit the state's westernmost rail-trail originating in the quaint historic town of Milton can explore the beautiful countryside of Florida's panhandle with a trail that crosses several creeks and features an array of native wildflowers. Among swamps towering pine trees and pastureland this paved trail provides a serene tour through rural Florida. At its northern terminus this 8-mile paved trail joins the 1.5-mile Military Heritage Trail which is managed by the U.S. Navy.

Wekiva River/Rock Springs Run Paddling Trail

Beginning just north of Kelly Park in Apopka Rock Springs Run winds its way swiftly downstream for several miles to join the spring run flowing out of Wekiwa Springs State Park. Traveling through sand pine scrub pine flatwoods hammocks and swamps paddlers can see a variety of wildlife including river otters. Numerous islands tributaries and lagoons provide opportunities for side trips and camping.

Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail

This paved and off-road trail located atop the Herbert Hoover Dike circles Lake Okeechobee the second largest freshwater lake in the United States. The trail takes users through agricultural communities while offering endless fishing and wildlife viewing opportunities including herons egrets and various wintering waterfowl. For nearly 20 years this trail has been the site of a week-long 110-mile hike that takes place over Thanksgiving week and is hosted by the Florida Trail Association.

Suwannee River Wilderness Trail

The 170-mile Suwannee Wilderness Trail provides a kaleidoscope of wilderness and historical opportunities. Visitors can travel outward from the river to recreational hubs trails parks museums cultural sites and other nature and heritage attractions in adjacent cities towns and rural landscapes throughout north Florida's Suwannee River Valley. The river boasts more than 70 fresh water springs.

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