Bradwell Bay Wilderness, Florida Hiking Trails Info, Map & More

Bradwell Bay Wilderness, Florida Hiking Trail Information

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From Sopchoppy: At the intersection of Crawdfordville Highway (US319) and Rose Street in Sopchoppy, keep right on Rose Street for 0.1 mile. Turn right onto Railroad Avenue. After about 1.3 miles, the name of the road will change to Oak Park Road. Continue on this road for another 5 miles, then turn left onto Forest Road 349. After another 2 miles, turn left onto Forest Road 348. Take the first left (about 0.6 miles) onto Forest Road 329. The Florida Trail trailhead will be on your left.

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Bradwell Bay Wilderness

A swamp thick with titi trees, distinguished by their leathery leaves and fragrant white flowers, dominates the second largest Wilderness in Florida. Here, you’ll also find a swampland of hardwoods or pine-titi mixtures and small ponds that are either open or covered with aquatic plants.

The climate is subtropical, and rainfall averages 55 inches per year. Summers are hot and sticky with humidity, but temperatures have been known to drop into the teens come winter. Bradwell Bay’s low areas are generally submerged beneath one to four inches of standing water. The water table lies close to, if not above, ground surface over most of this flat Wilderness. Drier islands of longleaf pine and wire grass border parts of the swamp. White-tailed deer, black bears, and alligators top the food chain.

With sufficient rainfall, canoeists can run the Sopchoppy River, which defines the eastern edge of the area. Hikers can follow old logging roadbeds or take the east-west Florida National Scenic Trail through Bradwell Bay. Truth is, however, that hikers who opt to use the well-marked trail typically end up wading through sections of waist-deep water.

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