Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Registered User StichBurly's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-24-2012
    Location
    South Florida
    Age
    36
    Posts
    53

    Default Ocala Forest Hike

    Hello. My dad is showing interest in backpacking with me. We have done a couple of over night hikes. Now he wants to try a hike with two nights out. I have hiked the entire length of the Florida Trail thru Ocala Forest back in December. I was dropped off Paisley and Picked up at the Rodman damn. So I am not familiar with places to park for a shorter trip. We would like to do about 25 miles or so. I would like some suggestions for an itinerary. We are going to start on a Friday around 4pm. I was thinking about parking at Juniper Springs and staying the first night somewhere around Hidden Pond. Hike all day on Saturday. Get up Sunday Morning and hike out to our car. Where would be a good place to camp Saturday night and where is a good place to park our second car for pick up?

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-29-2008
    Location
    West Palm Beach, Florida
    Age
    60
    Posts
    3,248

    Default

    A 25 mile hike from Juniper Springs would take you to about the where the FT meets the blue blaze cut off to the 76 Store.
    First night from Juniper to Hidden Pond is about 5 miles. How far do you want to hike Saturday and Sunday?
    The trouble I have with campfires are the folks that carry a bottle in one hand and a Bible in the other.
    You never know which one is talking.

  3. #3
    Registered User StichBurly's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-24-2012
    Location
    South Florida
    Age
    36
    Posts
    53

    Default

    I figure we could do 15 miles on Saturday with no problems. That would leave us with 5 miles or so on sunday. Are you thinking juniper to salt springs?

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-29-2008
    Location
    West Palm Beach, Florida
    Age
    60
    Posts
    3,248

    Default

    I meant 88 store, I guess 76 just had a ring to it.

    The cut off to the 88 store is a bit further than the cut off to Salt Springs, either could be your end point. Or you could just go about a mile more to FR 76 and CR 316 where the game check station is, they have parking there.
    Now that hunting season is over (bug season is beginning), you can camp anywhere by following dispersed camping rules. But..water sources are rare in that area. You will have to water up at Hopkins Prairie (if the pump is working or hit the pond) or find a sink/pond with water.
    The trouble I have with campfires are the folks that carry a bottle in one hand and a Bible in the other.
    You never know which one is talking.

  5. #5
    aka Kudzu JaxHiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    08-08-2008
    Location
    Jacksonville, FL
    Age
    43
    Posts
    1,102
    Images
    1

    Default

    Isn't Alexander to Juniper about 17? I prefer that section. I don't particularly find Juniper to Salt Springs that exciting though I've done it several times. However, you could go on to Hidden Pond to make it about 25 and another 5 to Hopkins for a total of 30 miles.

    Are you set on Ocala?
    JaxHiker aka Kudzu - WFA
    Florida Trail Association: NE FL Trail Coordinator (Gold Head to Stephen Foster)
    Problems on the trail? Have a great experience? Please let me know. trails at northfloridatrailblazers dot org
    Blazing Trails with Kudzu @ www.idratherbehiking.com
    Follow me @idratherbhiking

  6. #6
    Registered User StichBurly's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-24-2012
    Location
    South Florida
    Age
    36
    Posts
    53

    Default

    Not really set on Ocala? What's your thoughts. We might just one night. Park at juniper springs hike to hidden pond then back to juniper springs in the morning. Reasons being I have to work late on Friday and I am not sure what time we will make it out there.

  7. #7
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-29-2008
    Location
    West Palm Beach, Florida
    Age
    60
    Posts
    3,248

    Default

    If you are in Orlando and need a shorter drive, check out where the FT goes through Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area, west of Christmas.
    The trouble I have with campfires are the folks that carry a bottle in one hand and a Bible in the other.
    You never know which one is talking.

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-29-2008
    Location
    West Palm Beach, Florida
    Age
    60
    Posts
    3,248

    Default

    That should have been EAST of Christmas.
    The trouble I have with campfires are the folks that carry a bottle in one hand and a Bible in the other.
    You never know which one is talking.

  9. #9
    Registered User StichBurly's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-24-2012
    Location
    South Florida
    Age
    36
    Posts
    53

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by WingedMonkey View Post
    If you are in Orlando and need a shorter drive, check out where the FT goes through Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area, west of Christmas.
    I check it out. Looks like they only have one area for camping and it's reservation only. Doesn't look like there is water at the campsite? Can you camp at will on the FT section? I couldn't see anything about it on their website.

  10. #10
    aka Kudzu JaxHiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    08-08-2008
    Location
    Jacksonville, FL
    Age
    43
    Posts
    1,102
    Images
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by StichBurly View Post
    Not really set on Ocala? What's your thoughts. We might just one night. Park at juniper springs hike to hidden pond then back to juniper springs in the morning. Reasons being I have to work late on Friday and I am not sure what time we will make it out there.
    I was thinking the Suwanee but it's probably a little far for you especially with a short timeframe.

    I'm not really fond of out and backs. If I were you I'd put a vehicle on either end and hike the 10 miles from Juniper to Hopkins with a layover at Hidden Pond. Actually, I'd hike south and relax in the Spring at the end.
    JaxHiker aka Kudzu - WFA
    Florida Trail Association: NE FL Trail Coordinator (Gold Head to Stephen Foster)
    Problems on the trail? Have a great experience? Please let me know. trails at northfloridatrailblazers dot org
    Blazing Trails with Kudzu @ www.idratherbehiking.com
    Follow me @idratherbhiking

  11. #11
    Registered User StichBurly's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-24-2012
    Location
    South Florida
    Age
    36
    Posts
    53

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JaxHiker View Post
    I was thinking the Suwanee but it's probably a little far for you especially with a short timeframe.

    I'm not really fond of out and backs. If I were you I'd put a vehicle on either end and hike the 10 miles from Juniper to Hopkins with a layover at Hidden Pond. Actually, I'd hike south and relax in the Spring at the end.
    Out and backs arent my favorite either. My dad got some new gear so we are using this hike as a mini shakedown. Hiking the Suwanee section is on my short list of sections of the FT I want to do. I love relaxing in a spring after a hike. I must admit I am spoiled. I have a three private springs in my neighborhood. One being 100 feet from my house.

++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •