As an avid hiker in the Central Florida area and owner of a website about outdoor recreation in the state, I can't say enough lovely things about the hard work that the Florida Trail Association volunteers do. In many instances, their work is the only reason that some of Florida's best resources are available for public use. And what's more, they do it all without looking for recognition from the rest of us. As you hike down a trail, rarely do you think about who blazed that trail or who's maintaing it, but the Florida Trail Association does - and that makes it possible for us all to enjoy the wonderful state that we live in.
Having been born in Florida 71 years ago I love this state---IN its Natural State! My 4th grandfather moved to Columbia County in 1835-6. He settled on the Very site now known as Falling Creek State Park now in Columbia Co. and sold the property around 1959 to the Rivers Family. We as a family grew up in rural Gilchrist Co., where we fished and hunted along the banks of the Great Suwannee River near Otter Springs State Park! The Florida Scenic Trail and the Florida Trail Association is working to keep the hearts and minds of our friends, visitors and families focased on the Natural Florida that I have loved for a lifetime. I want the same places kept in their Natural wstate for MY posterity. to enjoy for a lifetime also! FTA is doing that. We need all the help and funds we can get to carry on this great program! Thanks, Mitchell E. Sapp
My young son and I got involved with our local Florida Trail chapter a few years ago. They love having children at their meetings, on hikes, and especially while doing trail work. This organization is so family friendly. There are so many opportunities for families and friends to get together and have fun exercising, and making the community better. As a single mother, they have embraced us like family. We have been on long road trips with them to the mountains. We have gone on long distance hikes with them. We get to see treasures all over Florida because of this group and their welcoming attitude. My son's favorite part is trail work! He feels safe and at home in the woods. He loves getting to use tools and helping out. He really learns a lot from the meetings, too! Being a part of FTA has given my son and I a great escape from the stresses of life, and loads of opportunities to connect with nature, good friends, and share God's awesome creation with others.
The Florida Trail Association is an outstanding organization on both the state and local level. Volunteers devote many hours to building and maintaining the Florida National Scenic Trail which extends through Florida for more than a thousand miles. We work hard and enjoy being outdoors and working with other members of the organization. I have never been in a volunteer association that works as smoothly as this one. The staff at headquarters actively seeks input from the members and the members are not shy about providing it. In addition to maintaining trails and organizing wilderness activities for members and the public, the association is committed to protecting wilderness in Florida and educating the public about the importance of doing this.
Every year I attend work parties that go through and clear out the local Florida Trail so others can hike and enjoy the outdoors. My family enjoys the recreational activities led by the FTA activity leaders which include hiking, kayaking, camping, marshmallow roasts, picnics, and educational opportunities. The people involved in this organization are the BEST!
I have been a trail maintainer for the past 25 years. When I lived in the North, I was responsible for 25 miles in a historical national Park. Now I have moved to Florida and joined the Florida Trail Association which build and maintain trails through out Florida. I volunteer with work parties in two chapters as I live on the edge of two chapters. The Florida Trail Association is well managed and provides the glue which brings volunteers, hikers and others together
As a member since the 1990's in 3 different chapters, I've really enjoyed the volunteering, programs, Hiking Festival, and fellowship. We've hiked, kayaked, manned booths at Birding Festivals, attended chapter programs, and cleared brush from trails.
Not every state has a national scenic trail traversing it. The Florida National Scenic Trail allows you to come in contact with a vast array of differet types of eco systems as you venture on the trail. Chapters across the state made up of volunteers maintain the trail to insure a pleasureable experience for all. Find a section and do a mile or through hike the whole trail you won't be disappointed.
The staff and volunteers have done a tremendous job creating and maintaining this National Scenic Trail. It just keeps getting better.
The Florida Trail Association is a grassroots driven organization working to create a statewide hiking trail that protects the best of the REAL Florida for future generations. Members are gracious, hard working, and a pleasure to be around. Thanks to volunteer commitment the organization is affordable.