Volunteer Work Party

October 16-22, 2019

Osceola Trail Maintenance Marathon
North Florida Trail Blazers Chapter

Scroll down to Register for this volunteer opportunity

Join the Florida Trail Association in the 7th Annual Osceola Maintenance Marathon on the Osceola National Forest!

The Osceola National Forest is a natural gem. These forested woodlands and swamps provide many opportunities for a wide range of visitor experiences. Among the significant landscapes found here are the Pinhook Swamp, a mosaic of wet pine flatwoods and pocosin swamp along the forest’s northern boundary; Big Gum Swamp, a wilderness area with more than 13,000 acres of cypress-sweetgum swamp, found near the center of the forest; and Ocean Pond, a large, shallow lake popular for recreation and important in Florida’s Civil War history.

Camping is provided at Ocean Pond Campground,  Bring your kayak to this event and slip away for an evening paddle after work from our own private beach.

Volunteers will work to maintain 21 miles of trail through the National Forest using a combination of hand tools and power equipment. No previous experience is necessary and all tools and equipment will be provided by the FTA.

Arrive by Oct. 16th no earlier than 4pm and share a meal with the crew before work begins on Oct. 17th at 8am. The project ends at 4pm on Oct. 22nd and no dinner will be provided on that last day.

Hiking boots and long pants are required. Long-sleeve t-shirts are recommended.

This event is a free volunteer opportunity. Join our crew and have fun!


Name: Ocean Pond Campground

Address: U.S. 90
Sanderson State: FL Zip code: 32087
County: Baker County

Type: Front-country car camping

Driving Directions:


From the intersection of Hwy 441 and Hwy 90 in Lake City, FL, drive east on Hwy 90 for approximately 13 miles. Turn left at County Road 250A. Cross over the railroad tracks. Follow the signs from US 90 to Ocean Pond Campground.

From Jacksonville take I-10 west to exit 324, US 90. Take 90 West and turn right on 250A. Follow signs to the Ocean Pond Campground.

Bathroom: Yes
Shower: Yes
Potable Water: Yes
RV Camping: Yes
RV Hookups: No

Camp Notes: None

Type of work: Trail Maintenance

Section of the FNST: Florida National Scenic Trail, Osceola National Forest

Total Hiking Miles Per Day: 6 Miles
Activity Level: Moderate
Start Time: @ 8:00 AM
End Time: approx. 3:00 PM

Minimum Age: 14 years old (*Participants under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a Legal Guardian. These individuals must also complete a Youth Waiver Form)
Max Group Size: 25 volunteers
Physical Difficulty: Moderate activities. Volunteers will be assigned tasks based on their individual comfort level and technical proficiency.

Restrictions: Only US Forest Service certified sawyers will be allowed to operate chainsaws on the Florida Trail.

When registering, volunteers may be asked about known medical conditions or allergy concerns. This information is treated as confidential information, and is only shared with Crew Leaders and the Florida Trail Association Staff. Please disclose all known medical and allergy information. This information enables crew leaders and staff to respond appropriately to medical emergencies. Medical or allergy conditions will not disqualify you from participating in a Volunteer Work Party.

Breakfast: Yes – @ 7:00 AM
Lunch: Yes – lunch packed @ breakfast (sandwiches and snacks)
Dinner: Yes – approx. 6:00 PM

When registering, volunteers may indicate dietary needs and/or preferences, as well as known food allergies. If we are unable to honor your request, we’ll contact you so that you can provide your own meals. In most cases, we are able to accommodate special meal requests.


Questions About Registration:
FTA Staff: Community Outreach Manager
Registration Contact:
Van Tran, (352) 538-7639, VanT@floridatrail.org

Questions About the Project:
FTA Staff: North Florida Trail Program Manager
Project Contact: Jeff Glenn, (352) 514-1455, jeffg@floridatrail.org


To register for this Volunteer Work Party please click the link below.

Registrations are first-come, first served by date time stamp. You will receive an email confirmation within 72 hours. The FTA reserves a 10-person wait list and will notify individuals on the wait list within two (2) weeks of the project date. Volunteers may be contacted the week of the event to fill open volunteer registrations.


This list is not a comprehensive pack list. Please use this list to help plan for your event.

One large backpack for all your personal items
One day pack, large enough to carry water, food, rain gear and other personal items
Pack cover (rain gear)

Tent (Rain Fly) and Footprint (if desired for tent)
Sleeping Bag
Sleeping Pad or Inflatable Mattress
Foldable Camp Chair
Ear Plugs

Bring a Cup, a Bowl and Eating Utensils

Wicking T-shirts (synthetic or wool)
Wicking Underwear
Quick-Drying Pants and Shorts
Sturdy Work Pants
Long-Sleeve Shirts (for sun, bugs, thorny plants)
Socks (synthetic or wool)
Bandana or BuffWarm
Insulating Layers (Night) – Puffy Jacket, Vest, Pants and Hat
Rain Jacket or Poncho

One pair of Hiking Boots (required)*
One pair of Camp Shoes (closed-toed)

*Note: Hiking boots can be either trail runners or traditional hiking boots (ankle-support preferred). No tennis shoes or sandals.

Headlamp and/or small backpacking flashlight
Small lighter in waterproof container or plastic bag (optional)

Two 32-ounce water bottles
OR One 2-Liter hydration bladder bag (preferred)

*Note: Each person should be drinking at least 3-liters of water a day. This is your personal responsibility.

Sunscreen, lip balm, sun glasses, base-ball hat or other sun-shielding hat

DEET-based Bug Spray (recommended)
Head net

Bathroom Essentials (camp soap, toothbrush, etc.), Toilet Paper, Wash Cloth and Pack Towel

Any Prescription Medications or Over-the-Counter Medications (seasonal allergies, pain relievers (Ibuprofen for inflammation/pain), etc.)

Safety Whistle

Trekking Poles
Energy Food (Bars, Gels, Chews, Trail Mix)
Energy Beverage or Drink Mixes
Packable Lantern
Notebook and Pen
Book (for camp!)
Camera and Memory Cards
A Smile and Sense of Adventure!

At this Volunteer Work Party the Florida Trail Association will provide the following gear and services.

Experienced Crew Leaders
Appearances by FTA Regional Representatives

Hard Hat
Safety Glasses
Ear Protection

Mechanized Equipment (Mowers, Brush Cutters, Chainsaws, etc.)
Hand Tools (Loppers, Hand Saws, Etc.)

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Kitchen Essentials (Pots, Pans, Knives, Etc.)
Sanitary Stations (Bins, Soap, Water, Etc.)


Power will be available at this Volunteer Work Party

This event is hosted at a front-country campground with full restroom facilities


Thank you for volunteering with the Florida Trail Association. Your service allows millions to experience the unique wildlands in Florida!