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Florida Trail: Central Florida West Hiking Guide

Florida Trail: Central Florida West Hiking Guide

Regular price $8.99 USD
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Official companion app to "The Florida Trail Guide" guidebook by Florida Hikes! With its oldest segments built throughout Withlacoochee State Forest in the 1970s, the Western Corridor of the Florida Trail is one of two options for circling around the Orlando metro area. For a thru-hiker, connecting northbound to it takes a significant investment in walking along bike paths, sidewalks, and road shoulders for nearly 70 miles. For day hikers and backpackers, there is plenty to explore without ever setting foot on pavement. Loop hikes abound in the Green Swamp, Richloam, Croom, and Citrus sections, including Florida's longest backpacking loop on a single piece of public land, 39 miles on the rugged Citrus Hiking Trail. The Florida Trail roughly follows the northerly flow of the Withlacoochee River, which rises from the Green Swamp, on its journey towards the Gulf of Mexico. Whenever it parts ways with the river, the land is rolling hills, high and dry and topped with pines.

In the riverside community of Dunnellon, the trail leaves the Withlacoochee's side for the final time. It makes a diagonal across the Ocala Ridge along a mile-wide swath of forests and fields called the Marjorie Harris Carr Cross Florida Greenway, a permanently protected landscape that was once slated to be a cross-Florida canal. Reaching the swamp forests of the St. Johns River basin at Marshall Swamp, it parallels the Ocklawaha River northward for a stretch into the western side of the Ocala National Forest. A final segment of footpath bridges swamp forests with scrub forests as the Florida Trail leads hikers to the east-west junction at the top of the loop around Central Florida, not far from The 88 Store, a popular backwoods watering hole.

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