Embarking on a hiking adventure is like stepping into a portal that transports you to a realm of natural wonders and exhilarating discoveries. The crisp autumn air becomes your companion, the rhythmic crunch of gravel beneath your boots a soothing melody. With each ascending trail, the world unfolds before you, revealing panoramic vistas that ignite a sense of awe. Hiking is not just a physical journey; it's a symphony of sights, sounds, and serenity that transforms every step into a celebration of the great outdoors.
Fall is a great time of year to visit one of the conservation areas owned and managed by the St. Johns River Water Management District across northeast and east-central Florida.
This weekend, in particular, offers two opportunities to participate in national observances connected with public lands.
November 17th is National Take a Hike Day, and November 19th is National Camping Day. We have more than 770,000 areas of conservation land across our 18 counties, where you will find many miles of hiking trails and various primitive camping options.
We purchased these lands to support our core missions, which include protecting water quality, water supply, and natural systems while providing flood protection. Beyond supporting our core missions, many of these lands are open for the public to enjoy. In addition to hiking and camping, visitors may enjoy other recreational activities that are compatible with conservation, such as wildlife viewing, canoeing, and more.
We invite you to visit one of these special public lands. It’s likely we have a conservation area not far from your neighborhood. Before you go, visit our website for information such as property descriptions, driving directions, downloadable trail maps, and a camping reservation system.
Orange County has the Econlockhatchee Sandhills Conservation Area, the Hal Scott Regional Preserve and Park, and the Seminole Ranch Conservation Area. In Apopka, there is Lake Apopka North Shore.
For a list of all the District properties, go here.