Location: Myakka River State Park
Trailhead: 7P56+3W Myakka City, Florida
Hike Length: 5 miles
Time Estimate: three hours
Habitats: Pine Flatwoods, Hardwood Hammock, Dry Prairie
Notes: Can be very hot and dry – bring lots of water. This is a great hike to see the undisturbed pinelands in the park, but it is an out and back hike that’s pretty long on a hot day, as most of the hike is without any shade.
- Eastern Meadowlarks – Meadowlarks are common out in the pry prairie and pine flatwoods. Become familiar with their call in order to spot them.
- Prairie Butterflies – This is butterfly heaven… keep your eyes open for white peacocks, buckeyes, bella moths and more.
- Prescribed Fires – This area is burned on a regular basis every one to three years. Look for burn evidence on the ground and the base of trees.
- Longleaf Pines – The pine flatwoods is the home of slash and longleaf pines. They are sometimes hard to distinguish, but the longleaf pines have particularly large cones.
- Multiple habitats/Ecosystems – This hike will take you through a variety of Florida’s Habitats/Ecosystems.
- Pine Flatwoods Ecosystem – This is the best view of undisturbed pine flatwoods habitat in the park.
- Pine Lilies – Keep your eyes open for pine lilies August though October. One of the most beautiful flowers in the park.
- Sandy Earth – Notice the sand underfoot when you get out to Bee Island. As far as you are from the beach, it doesn’t feel like it.