Ready to Discover a hidden gem in Central Florida? a very nice ride but with a small warning.it took us about 3hrs with a few stops at the river and a bike shop in floral city( which had no parking for bikes because they had their own bikes for sale in front of the bike parking).It seemed to be mostly downhill all the way and we were exsausted in the end, so we were unable to backtrack uphill and get to our starting point before dark.had to call the wife to pick us up in Inverness. It's obvious that they done much to make the ride through town a pleasant experience by maintaining the railway heritage of the trail with the preserved old train depot and the red caboose. ", "their is talk of extending the withlacoochee state trail possibly south off of US 301. i am not sure where it may go. First we rode 5 miles north from the Ridge Manor Trailhead to our stopping point last year at Croom Road where there is a bathroom and shelter. Several major sinkholes and numerous caves are spread throughout the hilly Citrus Tract. I love it! Rode most of the trail over the last two days. The trail is what brought me to the area, and I stayed near Brooksville and most of the time, in Inverness. Stayed at the very bike friendly Central Motel located on the trail in Inverness. As a woman alone, I felt very safe on this trail. ", I am proud to tell you we are trying to get this wonderfull trail extended from Trilby To Dade City-then Zephyrhills wants to have it run to there area.. www.trilbyfl.com The Greater Trilby Community association is very active in pasco, "When I was a kid I always daydreamed about there being a network of bicycle highways. Excellent restaurants in Inverness a nice little town to visit. Although the trail makes for a long journey, food and drink are never too far as you travel southbound through Citrus Springs, Inverness, Floral City, Istachatta and Trilby.For much of its length, the trail parallels the Withlacoochee River, a state-designated paddling trail. I really enjoyed learning about the history of and other information about the trail at the information kiosks. It seems to change daily. This is a very flat trail and can be riden at a relatively quick pace. At stop sign on off-ramp, turn left and head a short distance to the "Welcome to the Withlacoochee State Forest" sign at SW 62nd Way (Forest Road 17). The new Dunellon Trail on the north end of the trip - though the connection to the Withlacoochee Trail was not well signed - made the trip into the small city a little easier, getting us off Hwy. Visitors are expected to maintain safe social distances of at least 6 feet apart. Well maintained, water and restrooms. Started at Dunnellon and headed south for 25 miles. Pick the speed and the distance you want to go along this 46-mile paved path, or plan a multi-day adventure, the better to see the many scenic areas and variety of wild and plant life. The longest ride I've done on it was 63 miles, starting at Trilby and going past Citrus. From Inverness can drive to 6 more paved trails (each 16 - 50 miles long), bike, & drive back same day. The 30 miles south of Inverness are more scenic than the northern 16 miles. I spent a week plus vacation in the area this September and rode the trail 7 of the 9 days. We slid by him (on his tail end of course) and he never once moved. View details about online payments, park  and campground closures, park programs/events and facial coverings. I hope this helps fill in some gaps. There were two bike shops on our section of the trail, one at Inverness, and one at Floral City. Great ride! I wish there was a rail-trail closer to Miami. 98/50, just north of the bicycle overpass. The Withlacoochee State Trail runs 46 miles and is one of 1600 rail-trails supported by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a nonprofit organization that is working to create a nationwide network of trails from former rail lines and connecting corridors. Do this trail. Crossed 2 somewhat busy roads. I invite you to read the other reviews. It is one of the most beautiful, peaceful rides Florida has to offer. Trail was in very good shape with occasional short bumpity sections and a few divots at edges. We connected with the Good Neighbor Trail at about mile 10 from the terminus and rode southwest. A good number of them apparently left at home any notion of observing good trail etiquette or even simply showing respect for other trail users. Met the ranger at Ridge Manor and he was a friendly fellow who advised us about possible wild turkey sightings. At 46 miles in length, the Withlacoochee State Trail is presently the longest paved rail-trail in Florida. It was very busy and only saw burgers so we left. Ron DeSantis, with CDC guidance to maximize social distancing and avoid gatherings larger than 10 people, the Florida Department DEP has closed all Florida State Parks, including the Withlacoochee Rails to Trails, to the public effective today. This particular trail is all paved at least for the 15 miles we have traversed as well as the off shoot “good neighbor trail”. Plenty of parking at the trail heads, clean restrooms and a smooth surface make this one of if not the best trails in Florida. Email for more info. Can be a dangerous ride. I rode the central portion of this trail (approximately 15 miles) from Lake Townsen Preserve near Nobleton north to Inverness. Free parking behind the library! Also north a few miles and back. Facilities are available at the parks and trailheads located along the trail. The one I remember really well however was a 7 foot rattlesnake (no joking) sunning himself just north of Ridge Manor Trail head (between 40 and 39 when travelling southbound). where trail bridge goes over US 50.Floral City, FL is midpoint of trail with Gazebo a popular rest stop.I live in area. I think next weekend I'm clearing my calendar to ride additional miles. We rode on a Wed/Thu in mid March and it was not too busy. Add your bird observations to the Withlacoochee State Forest - Richloam Tract eBird Hotspot. Help defend and expand trails nationwide. On day one (a weekday) I rode from the Owensboro Trailhead (south of Trilby) to Floral City (exactly 23 miles) and back; on day two I rode from Floral City to the trail end south of Dunellon (exactly 23 miles) and back. INSIDER INFO: 1) Just north of 486 there's a place called Burger Station on the east side of the trail. Canoe trail; Hiking trail; Address. 23 miles and back. Many of them are closed to the public in order to protect the caves from vandalism, and to protect animal habitats. Trail is very well maintained, rest areas plentiful along the way. I love hearing the gators croak by the lakes in the evening and the birds singing. My son and I traveled this trail starting from the Croom road trailhead and headed north to Inverness. It is so beautiful and so serene. This trail for me is perfect, I am a brand new biker in my late 40’s and my wife is as well. Most of the trail is through relatively sparsely populated areas with few cross roads, making it a safe and steady ride. That being said, I'd like to thank Steven from, NY for giving me his Cliff bar and orange. There are lots of trails to choose from around Citrus County, but the Withlacoochee State Trail is the one that is a must-see attraction. Effective October 6, the portolet at Croom Rital Road will no longer be available (see below for more information). I rode in the mornings all but one of the days and never found it crowded - I could ride at speed with only the intersections to slow you down. This pub has a path from the trail to their parking lot. I carried a 2 liter hydration pack, plus an 0.7 liter bottle, which is quite a lot, but worth it, particularly on the southern half. There is at least one convenience store in Floral. I typically start in Inverness at North Apopka or Floral City at Highway 48. In Floral City the crossroads is busy, we walked our bikes across the road crossing. Al. We locked our bikes together. A great place to try a recumbent bike or trike. It would be so much nicer if bikers would be courteous and announce themselves when passing. Then we rode south to Trilby. 4. We will visit this place again. I was expecting some amazing views riding along the Withlacoochee none. If anyone is interested in the guide, please contact us at Rails to Trails of the Withlacoochee, P.O. "Hurray! The plan was to park at the south end of the trail. Lovely weather in December and the walk was wonderful. I have been to a couples of nice trail, but this one is very interesting, good parking, good id sign, long etc. That is my only issue, little hills, big hills and everything in between. This section is smooth and rural all the way to Croom Road where there is a small shelter and port-a-john. My bicycle was destroyed and I was severely beaten by two bearded bicycle riders I never encountered before. No graft or corruption here, just pure goodness. Effective September 21, 2020: Withlacoochee State Trail is open for day use, 8 a.m. to sunset. Where do I start? Both very enjoyable with occasional crossings, towns, and facilities. This is our local trail which we bike on several days per week. We headed North towards Dunnellon for 16 miles where the trail ends, and then headed back. They have excellent burgers! Tracking a leisurely road bicycle pace, it was about 4.5 hours a day with stops along the way. We saw two other riders and nothing but trees. I rode this trail in both directions the 7-9th of February 2013. I actually wouldn't mind a few hills, but when I was a kid I dreamed of flat bike roads! We used Inverness as our start/finish since the parking is perfect and we love the town of Inverness. The paved surface is extremely bumpy and somewhat dangerous especially at the north end of the Trail. Turned around at the end and returned to Floral City. The only thing that may spoil your Zen is noise from the motorcycle area of the state park, but that is only a small section of the ride. From the poor oppressed people, I say Thank-You. This was my third time on the Withlacoochee and I finally did it all. Hours of Operation. Its character is different on the northern half versus the southern half -- the southern part is more rural and has fewer places to stop for lunch, etc. Enjoy! The trail was well shaded from its beginning near Trilby up to Inverness and then the shading disappeared for the remainder of the trail. In Hernando you have to cross a busy road & jog around to get back onto it--best to walk your bike here. Don't be surprised if you see a lot of us on recumbent Bikes and Trikes. 12/27/15, I started in Ridge Manor and did a 50 mile loop. This unique geological feature in the midst of the sandy North Florida terrain contains a miniature rainforest with gentle streams trickling down the sinkhole's 120-foot limestone walls. Although we have to drive for 4 hours (within the speed limit) less if in a hurry, we frequent the Withlacoochee State Trail as often as possible. There are bathrooms/porta potties and water along the waý, but sometimes the water stops are spread out a bit so in hot weather two water bottles is a good idea. The trail is in good condition. The longest blade I've done on it was 22 miles, again, starting at Trilby. Jim enjoys his job at the Withlacoochee State Trail, and appreciates the beauty of this special place. Very clean rooms with secure storage for your bike(s) when not riding the trail. Rode entire length northbound on a Thursday morning in February. It was very lightly used when I rode it which allowed me to maintain a brisk pace without interruption. There are restrooms and places to eat along the trail near most trailheads. There are no cars to worry about, it is clean, there are places to eat. With the trail being 46 miles long, a up and back ride takes you just short of a century ride (92 miles). Hotels near (TPA) Tampa Intl Airport; All things to do in Inverness; Things to do near Withlacoochee State Trail. As someone relatively new to cycling, I was invited by friends to go for a ride. Carry food and water on this section. Nothing special, but not bad either. In the summer, it can get hot out there! Busiest part of the trail is the Inverness and Floral City section with the most trailside businesses in that area. We were hit once when bikes were coming the other way and a biker behind us didn't want to stop and tried to squeeze between us. ". For finding amenities and local businesses, I highly recommend buying the trail guide book from the Friends of the Withlacoochee Trail http://www.railstotrailsonline.com/club-merchandise.html It was $6 and was quickly mailed to me. I started at the Ridge Manor Trailhead, going north. I've been living in Tampa for 1 1/2 year. "This message is for the bikers up in the snow belt who can't handle the Florida rat race: This area of Fla. has more bike riding than you can shake a stick at, on and off road. It is devoid of the homeless beggars and other weirdos that the Pinellas Trail is known for. The other day we drove to Floral City Park and accessed the trail about a quarter mile down the road to the east. Fernandina Beach FL 32034, 4732 Millhopper Road One was about 6 miles south or the northern trailhead and the other was south of Inverness, I don't remember the mile marker. Effective October 6, the portolet at Croom Rital Road will no longer be available (see below for more information). If staying over, I recommend The Crown Hotel in Inverness. Friends Groups meet the critical needs of individual parks and the system of state parks. They came in very handy. WE SPENT 3 DAYS ON THE TRAIL THE WEEK OF THE FEB. 19TH. Please review individual park pages for specific information for each location. It was mentioned in one of the items that there was a trail guide available outlining the Withlacoochee State Trail. I came here from across the state specifically to walk this trail. There are bike shops that do repairs and have some repair parts right off the trail in downtown Floral City and at the Inverness Trailhead where the red caboose is located. 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