"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks."

- John Muir

Ocala National Forest

ocala florida backpackingOcala National Forest

Information: US Forest Service

Fires Allowed: Yes (Dangerous during Dry Season)

Maps: Florida Trail Association

Permit Required: No

Location: 29.257909, -81.778713

With four designated wilderness areas, Ocala National Forest is one of Florida’s best backpacking destinations. The Florida Trail winds its way through  the forest from South to North, and several days worth of decent hiking are available in any direction, while staying in the forest. Be warned that while camping during the dry season (November-April), especially in the later months, ticks are abundant and can make for a miserable trip. Swimming in open water is not recommended, as there are alligators in the area. The terrain is about as non-challenging as it can get, and there are often desert-like conditions, with extremely dry heat and little tree cover.

Here’s a video of the terrain I found on Youtube, courtesy of Florida Trailblazer:

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