The FTA piqued the interest of the U.S. Department of the Interior. Their three-year study of the trail, completed in 1980, resulted in the enthusiastic endorsement of the Florida Trail to become one of only 11 National Scenic Trails in the United States.
Though not as famous as its northern neighbor, the Appalachian Trail, it is just as beautiful and challenging. The FT goes through the interior of the state from Big Cypress Swamp in the Everglades all the way to Pensacola by way of Lake City.
Today we decided to walk part of this 1300 mile trail. A very small part.... 7 miles.
First thing I want to say is that a person should watch the weather before attempting to walk any trail. Second thing I want to say is that even if it doesn't pour rain, you will get wet walking the FT!
We started out with nice, clean, dry clothes. We ended up looking like drowned swamp rats! Yes, on this trail you will be expected to walk through swamps! It is a watery tropical wilderness. So much for not getting our new hiking shoes wet! Not to mention our new pants and hat! Walking through the swamp wasn't bad, but the downpour of rain drenching every part of our body, WAS! The good thing is that the rain did help the horrible humidity and the vicious mosquitos.
I don't think we were prepared for this hike. But, we will be prepared the next time we attempt it! I will do my research on hiking in swamps and I'll have plenty of mosquito repellant, a raincoat, umbrella, rubber boots and maybe even a rubber raft! Oh, and I'll watch the weather radar!