The Florida Trail Segment 23: Buckman Loch North to Holloway Road Trailhead

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The Florida Trail Segment 23: Buckman Loch North to Holloway Road Trailhead is a 26.6 mile trail located near Palatka, Florida. The trail is primarily used for hiking.

26.6 miles

hiking

hiking
1 month ago

I parked at the H.H. Buckman Lock Visitors Area (seemingly shut down) and walked the mile down Buckman Lock Road, crossing FL 19. There, you will see the FT (Florida Trail) sign and be tempted to go straight in, circumventing a gate. Look instead to your immediate right, and you will see a small bridge made of just a few planks. Cross that, and you will not miss the trail to your immediate left into the woods.

The trail back here has many beautiful views including several ponds. I don't understand what happened here - the trail is made of old roads that seem shaped like a tiny neighborhood. Yet I saw no homes, abandoned or otherwise, possibly because I stayed on the main trail. Also, the roads aren't entirely abandoned as I saw fresh tire marks, most from tractors but some from trucks. You'll also find a fair amount of trash unfortunately as locals throw many beer cans, but also a couple piles of household items. I'm making it sound bad - mostly it's very beautiful - but I find all of this a curiosity as I have never encountered vehicles or even people back here.

The trail is easy to follow with orange markers and I understand leads to FL 20. I turned back after a few miles in, with a 7.2 mile round trip. Very peaceful and nice back there, and the ponds offer great viewing, especially if you like dragonflies!

hiking
1 year ago

This segment of the Florida Trail goes from the Cross Florida Barge Canal, through the Rice Creek Conservation Area, and north through the Etoniah Creek State Forest. Going north, the segment starts along rural roads. They aren't heavily trafficked and the locals won't bother you. Once you enter the Rice Creek Conservation Area, you will have a blast on Hoffman's Crossing, a 1/3 mile long narrow rickety boardwalk over the swamp. Watch for snakes! If you are hiking the Florida Trail, you will definitely enjoy the overnight stay at the Rice Creek Hilton, a screened-in loft over a picnic area. There is a pitcher-pump for well water here too. Not far from here is a huge cypress tree. Seriously huge. Follow the markers and you won't miss it. Be careful crossing SR 100 as cars speed and drivers can be drowsy. Follow along the Palatka-Lake Butler rail trail, which is a nice wide paved trail, popular with bicyclists. Keep on going through the Etoniah State Forest. Bugs will be bad in the spring and summer, because it's Florida.