What we're about

The Heartland Chapter is one of 19 chapters for the Florida Trail Association. The FTA is a volunteer group that maintains the Florida National Scenic Trail, a 1500 mile thru hiking trail from Big Cypress to the Panhandle. The Heartland Chapter is responsible for the maintenance of the trail in Polk, Highlands, Hardee and Desoto counties. We also maintain several loop trails throughout Polk County. Visit us at www.HeartlandFTA.org (http://www.heartlandfta.org/) for more information about our chapter. Or go to www.floridatrail.org (http://www.floridatrail.org/) to learn more about the Florida Trail Association.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Becoming a member of this Meetup group is not to be assumed as becoming a member in the Florida Trail Association (FTA). FTA membership information is available at https://www.floridatrail.org/make-a-difference/become-a-member/ .

Upcoming events (4+)

Hike at Tucker Hill Trailhead, Croom Tract, Withlacoochee State Forrest

We will be hiking the C-Loop, approximately 7.5 miles. It will be a moderate hike, 2 - 2.5 mph. This is Not a stroll, nor a run. There is a bathroom facility at the trailhead, Day Use Area.

We might see deer, quail, grey squirrels and bobcats. Lots of different trees & flowers.

BRING OR WEAR: Hiking boots, a hat, at least 1 liter (quart) of water, hiking poles as it is hilly, snacks if desired, sunscreen & insect repellent.

I will start check-in at 7:30 AM. Be ready to start the hike at 8:00 AM sharp.

This is a Heartland Chapter of the Florida trail Association(FTA) hiking activity open to the public. FTA membership is not required to participate. Membership in the FTA helps us in our efforts to build, protect and promote the Florida Scenic Trail. For FTA membership information please visit https://www.floridatrail.org/make-a-difference/become-a-member/

1
Colt Creek State Park/Yellow Trail Hike

Needs a location

This is a moderately paced hike of about 6 miles on the yellow trail, located near the equestrian campground in the southern end of the park. We should be able to view and enjoy the abundance of wildflowers that thrive near the trail during this time of year.

We will begin the sign up at 8:30 and step out on the trail at 9:00. Please allow yourselves at least 15 to 20 minutes to drive to the equestrian camp parking from the entrance at the Ranger Station, grab your gear, sign in, etc... There are bathroom facilities near the trailhead and running water.

BRING OR WEAR:
Hiking shoes, at least 2 liters water, sun and insect protection. Please, no bare feet or flip flops. Well behaved dogs are welcome and must remain on leash per state park rules.

Circle B Bar Reserve Hike

Needs a location

This is a Heartland Chapter of the Florida Trail Association (FTA) hiking activity open to the public. FTA membership is not required to participate. Membership in the Florida Trail Association helps us in our efforts to build, protect and promote the Florida National Scenic Trail. For FTA membership information please visit https://www.floridatrail.org/make-a-difference/become-a-member/

LOCATION: Circle B Bar Reserve; 4399 Winter Lake Road (SR 540); Lakeland, FL 33803. For Google maps use Polk’s Nature Discovery Center, Discovery Drive, Lakeland, FL. Meet in the Nature Center parking lot.

DESCRIPTION: This is a moderately paced hike (not a walk!) with lots of opportunity to observe wildlife. Approximately 4 miles in length but route depends on conditions of trails and any closures.

PETS ARE NOT ALLOWED AT THIS LOCATION.

Please, no children under 10.

Info including link to trail map and info on trail closures:
http://polknature.com/explore/circle-b-bar-reserve#panel1

BRING OR WEAR: Hiking shoes, brimmed hat, water, sun, and insect
protection. Cameras and binoculars are welcomed.

Tucker Hill A Loop 8 Mile Hike

Needs a location

This is a Heartland Chapter of the Florida Trail Association (FTA) hiking activity open to the public. FTA membership is not required to participate. Membership in the FTA helps us in our efforts to build, protect and promote the Florida National Scenic Trail. For FTA membership information please visit: https://www.floridatrail.org/make-a-difference/become-a-member/

DESCRIPTION: This is a moderately paced 8.5 mile hike (pace is faster than a walk). There will be opportunities to observe wildlife and plants.

PETS ARE NOT PERMITTED ON THIS HIKE.

BRING OR WEAR: Hiking shoes, brimmed hat, at least a quart of water, sunscreen, insect repellent and consider hiking poles due to the elevation changes. Bring snacks if you wish.

Sign in begins at 7:30 am. This hike will promptly start at 8 am so please allow extra time to use the bathroom so you will be ready.

Past events (745)

Circle B Bar Reserve Hike

Needs a location

Photos (8,665)