Little-Big Econ State Forest

MODERATE 137 reviews

Little-Big Econ State Forest is a 9.4 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Geneva, Florida that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
9.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
154 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

birding

camping

fishing

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

paddle sports

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

muddy

Little Big Econ State Forest's name comes from combining the names of the Little Econlockhatchee River and the larger Econlockhatchee River which flow through the property. The forest's most notable feature is the narrow, winding Econlockhatchee River which is designated as an Outstanding Florida Water (OFW) and singled out for preservation. The area that makes up and surrounds Little Big Econ State Forest supports a wide variety of wildlife and provides a roaming corridor which connects the southern part of the Econ Basin to the Tosohatchee State Preserve and other public lands along the St. Johns River for approximately 100 miles. The numerous species of wildlife found in this corridor include: gray fox, river otter, white-tailed deer, wild turkey, bobcat, resident and migratory waterfowl, wood storks, wading birds, shorebirds and numerous upland species. Other common sightings include: sandhill cranes, roseate spoonbills, bald eagles, ospreys, and hawks. Little Big Econ State Forest is historically significant since it contains the first means of crossing the Econlockhatchee River. The Old SR 13 railway and trestle was part of the Flagler Railroad System in the early 1900's and today is part of the Florida National Scenic Trail and is used by hikers to cross the Econlockhatchee River. Little Big Econ State Forest has an abundance of recreation opportunities. Canoeing along the Econ is a favorite pastime with many visitors, improved canoe launch areas have been established along the river. Three trailhead parking areas have been established for hiking, horseback and mountain bike riding, with 1 hiking trail (Kolokee) in the Florida Division of Forestry's Trailwalker and Trailtrotter Programs. . Other activities include fishing, bird-watching, picnicking and nature study. Primitive camping for canoeists is available with a special-use permit which can be obtained from the Little Big Econ State Forest office. The forest is managed as a Wildlife Management Area in cooperation with the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Fishing is permitted in all waterways of the forest unless otherwise posted. Hunting is permitted on the Kilbee Tract only. Non-hunting recreationists are encouraged to check the Wildlife Management Area regulations and season dates before visiting the Kilbee Tract. Visit MyFWC.com/Recreation for information. In keeping with its mission to protect and manage Florida's forest resources, the Division of Forestry has developed rules which apply to all State Forest visitors.

hiking
4 days ago

Great hike! Wear waterproof shoes for the foreseeable future because a few areas were tough to pass without getting wet. We hiked from Barr to the bridge and it was a hot day but stayed shaded and not too hot.

mountain biking
13 days ago

It’s beautiful here! The trails are amazing.

trail running
20 days ago

Did a quick 5k down the trail in mid-day, very shady, green, but since it has been raining a lot lately, many puddles along the way!

21 days ago

Love love love!

hiking
2 months ago

It's a great trail. Maintained and marked. it's a loop that breaks up into 2 different loops. They both return you back to camp. You can camp out if desired. Great scenery and not heavily trafficked.

hiking
3 months ago

I went hiking here with a friend today and we both loved it so much that we are already planning our next trip back!

If you follow the trails closest to the river, the air is fresh and clean, and everything feels moist and alive! Once you get to the part of the trails that overlooks the river, there are some really great views to be had!

I would rate these trails as moderate, and definitely not for anyone disabled, the very young, or the elderly.

The website says there are about 10 miles of trails, so there's definitely plenty of room to explore if you're hiking, and also a fun amount of trail if you're biking.

The trails wind around and intersect each other a lot, so I would definitely recommend bringing your smart phone and using the AllTrails app or Google Maps. Without those, we would've definitely gotten lost.

For info about where to park, this website explains everything very thoroughly:

https://floridahikes.com/florida-trail-little-big-econ-state-forest

backpacking
3 months ago

Awesome trail for short or long hikes. I like to find a place and hang a hammock for a few hours then hike back. The river has great swimming holes and sand bars for cooling off.

backpacking
4 months ago

one of my favorite places in Florida along the Florida Trail

hiking
4 months ago

Nice stroll through the little big Econ, great wildlife, not a busy trail. Had fun

5 months ago

Great for trail running! Challenging for experienced trail runners, but fun!

5 months ago

A beautiful day on the trail.

hiking
5 months ago

Great hike

hiking
6 months ago

Great trail with lots to see! Went with my friend and encountered a few gators sunbathing, a snake under one of the small bridges, turtles and people on horseback! We were very pleased with how beautiful the scenery was. Definitely want to plan a trip back again soon! Love how the map shows you exactly where you are too. Next time we will record our route! Didn't even know that was an option

hiking
9 months ago

Always a pleasure to hike my home trail

10 months ago

Nice shaded trail. Did some fly fishing along the way

10 months ago

Love this trail. Lots of great scenery and it changes frequently. I wouldn't recommend it for kids because of some erosion of the trail near the river. it's quite a long drop. Gators, snakes and a paw paw tree spotted on our hike.

10 months ago

Hands down my favorite trail in Central Florida. Both entrances make for unique hikes. Lots of wildlife and really great views. Great hike for 2-10 miles.

hiking
10 months ago

This is a great long trail! You can easily break it up into smaller sections if you don't want to do the full 9.6 miles. As of 7/29, there was no water covering any of the bridges. I would suggest wearing long pants because the trail does go through some sections of tall grass- so make sure to bring plenty of big spray! The trail was easy to follow, well maintained, and moderately used. On a Saturday afternoon we only ran into a few small groups!

hiking
11 months ago

The Flagler Bridge under 3 feet of water forced me to detour up an interesting and untraveled spur of the FT to check out alternatives. Glad I did as I found a riverside trail -also flooded- that I will come back to do. The Little Big SF always seems to provide a fun outing

hiking
Saturday, June 17, 2017

Decent trails with good distance. A lot of area with no shade, so it can get very hot. Could use some better trails markers. All in all - good place for a hike.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

This is my go-to spot in Central Florida for hiking. I always meet friendly faces on the trail. So beautiful!!

hiking
Thursday, April 27, 2017

went for a hike at dawn and was lucky enough to see a huge Gator relaxing on the bank of the river!!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

I love this trail. There's different ways you can take to make it feel different every time. I especially like how there are part of the trail that go right along the river, can usually see alligators!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Loved it! Very dog friendly! Will be going back to check out more of the trails soon!

mountain biking
Saturday, January 21, 2017

Absolutely incredible trails and scenery. After my first trip there earlier today all I can think about is going back. Well marked trails and surprisingly friendly people made it easy to navigate from the Jones trailhead to numerous exciting but not too challenging trails. It looked like there were also opportunities for kayaking and other activities. Overall that's about as good as it gets so don't pass this place up!

mountain biking
Tuesday, January 17, 2017

If you're mountain biking, Snow Hill is the place to go. Mtn biking is not allowed on the other hiking trails in Little Big Econ forest. Snow Hill = Jones East Tail Head. From this trailhead you can access at least 6 legs of mtn bike trails with varying skill levels: Two Bridges, Ditch of Doom, Outback Loop, River Trail, Snake Trail, Yahoo. (See photos where I posted the trail map.) Very fun, pretty scenery that takes you through swamp, marsh, river, creek, forest, and palmettos. I wore myself out playing on this trail, good for solo and group rides.

hiking
Sunday, October 30, 2016

I did a night hike with my dog and it was great! This is my default trail since it's close and seems to be the best trail I've found so far. By far the best trail around. It is clearly marked so it's hard to get lost, even in the dark! There are several options to take different trails along the way and signs that let you know the mileage and the way to go if you want to pick up another trail. Hike on!

hiking
Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Hidden treasure near Orlando!! Pristine, great hike. Giant cypress and oak trees, sandy river banks. Quiet place. Dog enjoyed it too!

Saturday, September 24, 2016

I have gone to this spot numerous times and have seen an alligator almost every time. Last Sunday I went expecting to see the usual alligator but I was quite surprised to see a group of about ten manatees!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

One of my favorite trails. I frequently see alligators out here. I've heard wild pigs, but never seen any. You can also see an eagle's nest from one of the camp sites. It's mostly shaded and the trail is easy to follow.

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