FikiNiki V. on Split Oak Forest Green Trail
Overall great trail but be ready to really hike the trails are covered with extra soft beach sand and it leads to one heck of a workout. Unfortunately the trails have so many smaller trails attached it is easy to get lost. My six mile hike turned into nine. It was beautiful and not too hot for me considering its almost may. I saw Sherman Fox squirrel, white tailed deer and lots of birds. Be carefulful there is a fenced off water portion that I did see baby gators by. No sign of larger ones or the parents though.
Great for a boring stroll. Markings were not very consistent. Only reason I would return is to thank the lady that kept our 5 mike hike (which turned out 7) from turning into indefinite. No wildlife to be filound granted we started at 10. But a butterfly was our wildlife highlight
Of all the Florida trails I've covered this one was close to a nightmare.
We decided to trek around the Green loop and it turned out to be a rather difficult experience. Fortunately I don't panic and have a good sense of direction. The trail was poorly marked and we got off track even when trying to effectively navigate.
There are several places where the markers are totally confusing. We came to three or four sections where the path split in different directions with no indication of which way we should go; we were constantly guessing. At the junction of the entrance to Moss Park there was no indication of which way to go and the trail branched off in four directions. We tried two of them and then back tracked to get our bearings straight. We were totally worn out and eager to get this over, so when we came upon a path (apparently trodden by motor vehicles) we decided to follow that thinking it had to lead to the road. It eventually set us back on the Green path but it was pure luck and determination.
Much of this trail is sand; deep course sand. It was tough going most of the time and took the fun right out of the adventure. We also encountered a lot of muddy and wet areas. Florida trails are not much fun in the summer heat, and this one, in off season is just too wet to consider fun.
We thought it would be a great trail for Biking and turned out we pushed them most of the way. These trails aren't even much good for hiking.
I started hiking here frequency for exercise. The trail has various subtrails that you can do and hit's a variety of ecosystems. I've seen plenty of deer and armadillos but there also tracks of bob cats and wild pigs.
My number one suggestion is that you consider bringing some waterproof boots if it has been raining. The trails can get flooded by an inch or two.
Also if you are in the area it's right next to the Back to Nature Wilidfe rehabilitation center. For a 5 dollar donation you can see their 'wildlife ambassadors(basically animals that can't be released due to injuries and such).
Large wide trails. Very sandy. at point 13 is the center mark I was confused and did both the north & south loop. Sadly my sneakers kept filling up with sand so had to walk portions with out shoes.
Although it was difficult and I'm very soar I really loved it.
I've done this trail a few times now and still find it enjoyable every time I'm out there. The trail is very well marked and maintained, and great for everyone. The northern loop is mostly Live Oaks and hard packed ground. Once you get up near the lake it gets a little soft but, unless you're there in the rainy season, you'll keep your feet dry. The southern loop brings you back down into palmettos and pines, This is a natural habitat for sand hill cranes and gopher turtles. The total outside loop is about 6.5 miles with multiple other trails.
I ran both loops of Split Oak Forest Trails and then one loop around the perimeter, guesstimating about 14 miles total for the run. There was some smoldering going on from a recent burn and I went off course for a while and got to wade through some marsh - but that was my fault. The trail is nice and easy to run on, you can be as speedy as you'd like without worrying about technicality. No crowds made for a nice escape.