Have you been to Florida recently?  Ok, how should I rephrase this…Have you been to the real Florida recently?

I’m not talking about the downtown nightlife of Miami, the crystal clear waters of Clearwater Beach or even Daytona Beach’s famous Bike Week…I’m talking about the backwoods part of Florida.  Out in the “boon-docks” where banjos run wild and the Deliverance is constantly in the back of your mind…

Okay…okay.  I’m just joking about Deliverance, although this is a real issue in some other parts of the country… O.o

Believe it or not, Florida has some of the most beautiful National Parks I’ve ever seen.  Hiking along the Florida National Scenic Trail with a few friends of mine, I had the opportunity to explore some of the richest and most diverse landscape in Florida…and I didn’t even know it existed in my own back yard!

Taking 5 strenuous day to complete the Ocala National Forest portion of the Florida Trail, 2 friends and I set out on a small expedition that would test both our endurance and our patience.  

We had many wildlife viewing opportunities and saw very few people…just the way I love it!  So sit back and enjoy the photo essay I compiled together just for you!

The Lorion Trail Log is available for all hikers to sign…if you’re in the area, see if you can find my name!

We found a makeshift campsite!  How neat!

The grasslands in Florida are mesmerizing!

When the wind blew through the grass it left you in a mesmerizing state of mind!

Time to fill up the water bottles…don’t worry we purified the water so no case of the mud-butt here!

Here’s a glimpse of some wild Sandhill Cranes!

Now we enter the Juniper Prairie Wilderness!

As I always say…get off the beaten path!

I love finding sketchy swings tied to trees above a sink hole out in the middle of nowhere… 😉

We stumbled upon this old cemetery out in the middle of nowhere! 

Another great view of wild Florida!

The orange dots on the trees mark the Trail.

Would you dare to cross this bridge?  Balance check in progress…

Scouting the Trail for our next camp site, water, wildlife & anything else in the woods.

At the tail end of our trip, we ended up crashing at the end of the trail on the side of a road with a grand total of about 45 blisters and very hungry stomachs.  

I mean seriously, who wouldn’t be hungry after eating nothing but nuts, berries & oatmeal for 5 days??  With one small phone call, we were off to a warm bed along with 2 large pepperoni pizzas!  All I have to say is that those were the best pizzas we’ve ever had!


Have you ever went on a long hike?  Where are your favorite hiking spots that you frequent?  Let me know by finding me on Facebook & Twitter!  Leave your comments below!