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near Historic Uptown, Florida (United States)
A 250 mile cycling trail across Florida from the Gulf Coast to the Atlantic: From St. Petersburg in the west to Canaveral National Seashore in the east the route is connected by 20 existing trails with a few short gaps and one longer 25 mile gap in the middle. I rented a comfort bike from West Orange Bikes and Blades completing the journey in a few days during Jan 2019. A great adventure for the bucket list!
When riding west to east C2C starts in St. Petersburg with the Pinellas Trail at 1st Ave S and Bayshore Drive SE, right at the entrance to Demens Landing Park. This well known trail takes you through St. Petersburg north to Tarpon Springs for a total of 38.5 miles or 62 km. Beautiful ride!
Where Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail along Melon St. meets Keystone Road turn left and follow bicycle trail north along Keystone Road for 5.2 miles or 8.3 kms to Tri-County connector. At Brooker Creek Preserve turn north on Tri-County connector (paved trail) toward Cypress Trails Farms.
The southern portion of this 4 mile or 6.5 km trail is complete to Trinity Blvd when I rode through in Jan 2019, however the northern section to Starkey Blvd was still under construction. It appeared that the entire Tri-County Connector will soon be opened.
At the "T" junction of Hwy 54 and Starkey Blvd proceed north along adjacent bike trail for 4.5 miles or 7.3 kms to Starkey Wilderness Blvd then turn right into Jay B. Starkey Wilderness Park.
At the intersection of Starkey Blvd and Starkey Wilderness Blvd proceed east riding 7.5 miles / 12 kms through the park to Suncoast Trail.
At the eastern edge of Starkey Wilderness Park turn north on Suncoast Trail which parallels Suncoast Parkway. Peddle 23 miles or 37 kms to Springbrook Hospital at Hwy 50.
Ride bike lane east on Hwy 50 (Cortez Blvd) 4 miles and continue straight on Hwy 50A (W Jefferson St) into Brooksville until you reach Ponce De Leon Blvd. Total distance along 50/50A is 5.7 miles or 9.2 kms.
*This is considered a gap which the state eventually plans to develop.
In Brooksville ride south on Ponce De Leon Blvd for a 3rd of a mile and merge onto S Broad St. Continue on S Broad St. another 3rd of a mile then turn left onto W Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Peddle uphill for almost a mile then turn left on S Main St. Ride 1/4 mile until you cross railroad track then look for Good Neighbor Trail on your right.
*Eventually a developed trail through Brooksville will connect the Suncoast and Good Neighbor Trails.
This recently expanded trail now runs 10 miles or 16 kms from the Train Depot Museum in Brooksville to Withlacoochee State Trail. Constructed along an old railway line this trail is straight as an arrow.
Withlacoochee State Trail is part of Florida's larger trail network. During my ride on the Good Neighbor Trail I met up with avid cyclist Erik Hougland who I biked with 4.7 miles or 7.6 kms south on Withlacoochee to Hwy 50. After chatting along the way this Vietnam Veteran was kind enough to offer me a lift in his truck across the only remaining large gap on the C2C.
This 25 mile or 40 km gap is the primary obstacle remaining to complete the C2C. The route is still under review and will likely not be completed for years to come? Many who take on the C2C close this gap by following roads like Hwy 50 through Tarrytown, Linden, Mabel, Mascotte and Groveland to meet up with South Lake Trail. For me, I hitched a ride with Eric Hougland who was kind enough to transport me and my bike across the gap in his truck. Thanks Erik: https://www.facebook.com/eriks.hougland
This is a beautiful section of the C2C traversing 13.5 miles or 22 kms along the south shore of Lake Minneola where it changes to West Orange Trail at the south end of much larger Lake Apopka.
The section of West Orange Trail included in C2C runs from South Lake Trail northeast 13 miles or 21 kms over gentle rolling hills and picturesque scenery. West Orange Trail is very popular with walkers, joggers and cyclists alike as it passes through communities like Oakland, Winter Garden and Paradise Heights.
In Clarcona where West Orange Trail meets N Apopka Vineland Road, rather than cross this road to continue on West Orange Trail head 1/4 mile south on N Apopka Vineland Rd to Clarcona Ocoee Rd. Ride 3 miles or 5 kms east on Clarcona Ocoee Rd. to N Pine Hills Rd. This is a small gap in C2C which must be cycled with caution; I chose to ride on the sidewalk for much of this section.
This is another small gap of 2.2 miles or 3.6 kms which must be negotiated along shoulder of roads or upon sidewalks. Where the previous gap along Clarcona Ocoee Road meets N Pine Hills Rd follow Pine Hills north 1 mile to Beggs Rd/424 then turn right and follow Beggs Rd east 1/4 mile to N Orange Blossom Trail/500. This is tricky but find your way onto N Orange Blossom Trail and ride cautiously northwest 3/4 miles under and just beyond John Land Apopka Expressway to Seminole Wekiva Trail.
After two previous gaps your back on a well maintained bike trail winding through a mixture of quiet suburban and commercial zones for a distance of 13 miles or 21 kms. A long and beautiful stretch of the trail takes you by hundreds of fence murals painted by local artists. Another unique quality of this trail are two pedestrian/bike tunnels under major intersections: the first at W State Road 434 @ Markham Woods Rd. and the second at W Lake Mary Blvd @ International Pkwy.
Cross Seminole Trail branches off Seminole Wekiva by crossing Interstate 4 via cable-stayed bridge, once over the highway the trail runs northeast 6.5 miles or 10.4 kms to Spring to Spring Trail. On route you'll also cross over St. Johns River via a newly developed sheltered bike lane.
One of my favorite sections of the C2C, Spring to Spring Trail winds its way along the northern end of Lake Monroe a distance of 6.8 miles or 11 kms to Providence Blvd in Deltona. The trail also carves its way through dense vegetation giving a closed in but tranquil experience while benches positioned along the trail provide great places to take a break.
Built along an old railway line in Volusia County this trail runs 36 miles or 58 kms from Deltona to Titusville. Totally complete with exception to a 3.5 mile gap along Maytown Rd the trail is comprised of long and straight segments with pedestrian crossings over State Road 415 in Osteen, State Road 442 in Edgewater, and the long gentle-curve bridge recently constructed over Garden Street in Titusville.
A conceptual plan sees a bicycle path paralleling the A. Max Brewer Memorial Parkway across Merritt Island to Canaveral National Seashore. Will this ever happen? Hard to say but if it does it would be years before completed. In the meantime there is already a bike lane across the bridge, and depending on traffic the 13.5 mile or 22 kms to the coast can be quite safe and enjoyable riding along the shoulder of the road.