Ichetucknee Springs State Park is all about the water. Or the eight springs that combine to form the Ichetucknee River, to be exact. The natural water fountains produce a staggering 223 million gallons of freshwater each day. That’s woofin’ amazing!
With springs and the river as the main draw, this park is
well known for canoeing, tubing, swimming, and even scuba diving. While all of
this sounds like fun, your doggo will be more interested in the trails. Since
four legged visitors are not allowed on any of the trails that lead to the
springs or river, they need to stick to Trestle Point and Pine Ridge Trails. Both
of these trails are located in the northern end of the park, which just happens
to be a National Natural Landmark.
Pine Ridge Trail is a self-guided loop that runs through
an often overlooked section of the park. This hidden gem of a hike meanders around
an impressive sandhill that is flanked with groves of longleaf pines. While strolling along this path, your furry
pal will also see beautiful open vistas. All in all it’s about two miles, so
your pup will get some decent exercise. If it’s hot day, then the shady Trestle
Point Trail is the pawfect option. Another self-guided trail, it lets your
doggo see the gorgeous Ichetucknee River as well as an area where phosphate ore
was mined in the early 1900s. This furrific hike is not very long and should
only take about 30 minutes.
No matter which trail you follow, remember to carry more
than enough water for both you and your pooch. The muggy temperatures will make
your pup extra thirsty. Also, always have some clean-up bags ready to use at a
moment’s notice. Above all else, have a woofderful time hanging out in nature
with your beloved pooch!