Lake Butler Forest
Length: 23 miles (linear) from the City of Lake Butler to Olustee Battlefield
The section is along rural roads through the small city of Lake Butler and within the Lake Butler Forest which is operated as a tree farm by Weyerhaeuser. Although the great majority of the forest is planted pines, a few hardwood areas remain.
At any given time, a large part of the trail will pass through or along the edge of clear-cuts. Between new seedling planting and their maturation, these areas are typified by high grasses and panoramic vistas. Sightings of deer and turkey are fairly common. The trail from the Lake Butler Forest connects to the Osceola Experimental Forest before making its way into the Osceola National Forest. Pay close attention to turns, and carry a map with road numbers, as the trail follows several different roads.
If you are hiking through Olustee or on Osceola National Forest trails during the middle of February, be on the lookout for enemy scouts, infantry, and artillery! You may detect the characteristic odor of gunpowder if the wind is right. The annual reenactment of the Civil War Battle of Olustee fought near Ocean Pond on February 20, 1864 occurs near the Battlefield Museum on US 90, east of the town of Olustee. Everyone is invited, but don’t wear a Civil War cap unless you are ready to do combat with the other side! For more information contact the North Florida Trailblazers.