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near Chuluota, Florida (United States)
This hike will take you along the section of the orange blazed Florida Trail which runs through the Mills Creek Woodlands. This part of the Florida Trail runs from Whispering Forest Trail (dirt road) off Curryville Road up to Brumley Road, where the Florida Trail continues. If you do what I did and just hike this section of the trail you have a few options for starting and stopping. There is limited parking on both Whispering Forest Trail and Brumley Road, so you could start and stop at either of those locations (even having two vehicles if you don’t wish to loop back). I elected to enter from a very nice parking area on Brumley Road (entrance just before Panorama Road). From the parking area there is a very nicely blue blazed trail which crosses a pasture and into the woods to the orange blazed Florida trail. Once on the Florida trail I recommend you head north to Brumley Road and then loop back to Whispering Forest Trail and then back to the blue blazed trail and out to parking area. The trip is a little over 6 miles if you stay on the trail. You will pass through many Florida eco-systems, crossing creeks and walking through marshes. The Central Florida Chapter of the FTA have done a wonderful job making and maintaining this section of the trail. They have provided bridges over creeks, major boardwalks over wet areas, a picnic area and even a primitive campsite. If you're into GEOCaching, there even are a few of them along the trail. If you’re into wandering, the area provides old trails and roads you can explore - just stay off private properties which line the woodlands. From different people I have heard that if you’re quiet you should be able to see a variety of wildlife. There is no hunting in these woodlands, so I assume they feel safer than in hunted areas. You can also read more about this and other areas at my website – www.tomchoma.com Please take nothing but pictures and leave nothing but footprints (if you spot some trash, you can take that too) - happy trails!
Blue blazed trail from Panorama parking area enters orange blazed Florida Trail here
One of many bridges over what at times is a running creek
Bridge over Silcox Branch waterway
Some parking provided on edge of Brumley Road
You cross Panorama Road Here
Primitive campsite dedicated to Wiley Dykes Sr. An Eagle Scout project by Matthew Castner, BSA Troop 617 Oviedo, FL - you can camp there, just respect the area and cleanup before you leave
Entered woods from pasture along the blue blazed trail here
Large parking area provided by FTA - just before Panorama Drive (do not go up Panorama Drive!
Pretty picnic area with tables under a beautiful oak tree
Start of first boardwalk over wet areas of the trail
Start of second boardwalk over wet areas of the trail
Limited parking off Whispering Forest Trail