If you are familiar with hiking in Florida you know there is something missing from most of our trails. Hills. Since most of Florida is flat it can make you wish for an area of rolling hills. Luckily, Lake Louisa State Park in Clermont, FL offers enough rolling hills to make you happy. While no one will mistake it for North Carolina or West Virginia, the hills throughout the park are a welcome addition to an already great series of trails.
What Makes It Great
The main attraction in Lake Louisa State Park is of course the lake itself. Lake Louisa has been designated as an "Outstanding Florida Waterway." Make sure you plan your hike around Lake Louisa and stop by for some pictures. Keep your eyes open for wildlife, especially deer, turkey, quail, gopher and tortoises which are common in the area.
Lake Louisa State Park offers 23 miles of trails, most of which are multi-use. The 23 miles are broken up into 9 trails which range in distance from the 1/2 mile Dude’s Loop to the 5.5 mile Bronson Loop. Since the trails are multi-use you can expect them to be wide and more exposed to the sun. Keep your eyes open for bicyclists and horses as you make your way along the trails.
The trails in Lake Louisa State Park intersect each other to create an almost endless amount of trail options. You are able to adjust the length of your hike based on how much time you have and which areas of the park you want to see. Depending on which trail you select, you will walk by different lakes. There are a total of 13 lakes in the chain, with Lake Louisa being the largest.
Who is Going to Love It
Lake Louisa State Park is a great hiking location for people of all skill levels. While you will encounter more hills than most areas in Florida, they are not enough to make it too challenging. Be sure to select your hiking route based on distance in order to make sure everyone involved has a great time.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
When you first arrive at the park you will have the option of parking next to the Ranger station and beginning your hike from there. The first trail you’ll encounter is the Nature Trail which is next to Lake Louisa. From there you will have the option of continuing south to the other trails. Keep in mind that this is a state park so you will need to pay an entrance fee when you arrive.