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Old 08-08-11, 02:43 PM   #1
TrailViewMount
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Florida State Parks Are A Perfect Alternative Destination To Paved Rail Trails

With the Legacy Trail in Sarasota Florida getting a little blah, I decided to visit state parks in my area to ride. During the week most are very light with people and cars. These are perfect for biking.
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Old 08-08-11, 05:42 PM   #2
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Tis true, I've mountain biked at a few Florida State Parks. I've also added a several miles to a road ride exploring a Golds Head State Park. The gate guy even let me in for free all 3 times (on my bike).
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Old 08-08-11, 06:23 PM   #3
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I totally agree. My husband and I have spent alot of this summer visiting many of them in North Fl. In so many we are able to ride our mountain bikes on some of the trails. St George Island (in the panhandle) was great! We biked on the beach, right near the water, at sunset for miles. Manatee Springs has some nice mountain bike trails. Paynes Prairie also has some nice trails that go out onto the prairie. Hillsborough River State Park had a small trail that led us to another we didn't know about outside of the park.
Lots of fun and each park is different.
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Old 08-08-11, 09:24 PM   #4
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Yep, Paynes Prairie is one of the parks I have biked in. Although I was toooo chicken to go out on to the prairie by myself....
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Old 08-13-11, 06:53 PM   #5
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Myakka State Park has a cool (meaning shade canopy from all the trees) 16 mile ride from the front gate to the rear gate and back. Little if no traffic during the week.
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Old 08-20-11, 11:15 AM   #6
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Ft Cooper State Park in Inverness Florida is a fantastic place to ride. A small park but a trailhead for the Withlacoochee State Trail. I love this park.
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Old 08-20-11, 01:43 PM   #7
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Myakka State Park has a cool (meaning shade canopy from all the trees) 16 mile ride from the front gate to the rear gate and back. Little if no traffic during the week.
Ride out the back gate to increase mileage. Good roads with little traffic. My former club, Coastal Cruisers from North Port, ride out there frequently.
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Old 08-21-11, 03:16 PM   #8
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Ride out the back gate to increase mileage. Good roads with little traffic. My former club, Coastal Cruisers from North Port, ride out there frequently.

While taking a breather at the rear gate, I have seen the kind of "locals" that ply the public roads in that vicinity. Nothing I would care to be on the same road with, especially if they are dipping or chewing. I have chosen to ride off public roads here in Florida . . .too many accidents that are easily avoided but aren't. I prefer to take my bike to places that offer great natural areas free (or relatively free) from cars and hillbillies.

North Port, being the largest city (by area) in the state of Florida had been a destination of mine a while ago. Riding some of the long forgotten paved roads with my GPS of course, I came across a bunch of numbskulls camping right there in the middle of one of the named streets! They were plinking with .22's (I think) and as I was turning around away from them, one of them said something like "Hey, come back for some beer". I was slowly increasing my speed and was intently listening for a truck motor to start up. Luckily I didn't. That was the last time I road the back roads in North Port.

The hillbillies were probably from Punta Gorda anyhow.
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Old 08-22-11, 08:39 AM   #9
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Tis true, I've mountain biked at a few Florida State Parks. I've also added a several miles to a road ride exploring a Golds Head State Park. The gate guy even let me in for free all 3 times (on my bike).
Numerous, if not most, states by law must allow bicyclists in for free to ride or camp as long as they cycle into the ground areas with no car or clue of them just getting out their car in a hidden area before the park. I remember reading this online as my buddy was going cross country in his car and it just happened to be a side note on the website.
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