Monday, April 11, 2016

Okeechobee County Line to Port Mayaca Lock And Dam

 The northern paved portion of the L.O.S.T starts on route 78 just about at the county line. There is a large parking lot and restroom.
 A few miles south the trail comes to the route 98 access point. There's a huge parking lot, restrooms, and a fishing pier. Across the street from the access point is a gas station/convenience store/Dunkin Donuts.
 At Taylor Creek, about 2 miles south of the access point with the fishing pier, the trail is diverted to the highway to cross Taylor Creek. If you return to the trail on the other side of Taylor Creek, you quickly pedal up to a gate across the trail blocking users from dike repairs ahead. So stay on the highway for a couple more miles to the next access point. Once you get back on the trail, it is clear sailing all the way to Port Mayaca Lock and Dam.
 In this area of the trail you don't have to get off the trail at water control structures. At this one we spent a good amount of time watching a 10-foot alligator slowly circling in the water below.
 It doesn't get any better than this. The lake on your right, the dike canal on your left, and a wide, straight, paved, car-free trail as far as the eye can see.
It's about 27 miles to Port Mayaca Lock and Dam. Dike repairs put you back on the highway at this point. The smarter move is to head back to Okeechobee.

This is a unique and beautiful South Florida trail. Quiet. Solitude. A great paved trail.