Volunteer! Trail Work Day at Leon Sinks

Leon Sinks - 3Who:  The public is invited!

What:  The Apalachicola National Forest is hosting a trail pruning day at Leon Sinks.  The event includes an interpretive presentation.

When:  Saturday, Feb. 13, 2010

Where:  Meet at 9 a.m. at the Leon Sinks Geological Area trailhead (6605 Crawfordville Hwy, Tallahassee FL 32305)  

Other Information:  Wear appropriate clothing and shoes for the weather and hiking.  Gloves, long sleeve shirt, pants, water and snacks are strongly suggested.

Questions?  Call Sherry Gaston at (850) 576-5205 ext. 6603 for more information.

Flooding worsens along the Florida Trail

Flooding along the Suwannee River

Flooding along the Suwannee River

Swift, rising waters along the Suwannee River and its tributaries as well as the Aucilla River near Tallahassee has forced the closure of a large swath of the Florida National Scenic Trail through North Florida. With more rain expected over the weekend, hikers are advised to avoid the Florida Trail between the Osceola National Forest and St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge over the following week. A planned group hike for Feb 6 along the Suwannee, the IDIDAHIKE, has been canceled.

Please see full details of the Notices to Hikers on the Florida Trail Association website regards Suwannee River flooding and Aucilla River flooding.

Prescribed Burn on Ocala National Forest Today (Jan. 29)

Photo by David Godwin, Florida Wildland Fire Training

Photo by David Godwin, Florida Wildland Fire Training

The Ocala National Forest is conducting a prescribed burn on approximately 1,800 acres today in the Billies Bay Wilderness Area off County Road 445.  The burn will improve and help maintain the natural condition of the wilderness.

There is potential for smoke along County Roads 445 and 445A and long State Roads 40 and 19.  Motorists are cautioned to drive slowly with lights on while traveling in smoky areas.

People are reminded that the smoke they may see today and tomorrow morning in this vicinity is not coming from a wildfire.  This is one of many prescribed burns the Ocala National Forest will be doing during the 2010 prescribed burning season.

Individuals who are sensitive to smoke may contact the Ocala Fire Control Office at (352) 759-2081 to be placed on a notification list for future burns. View the Press Release.

Prescribed Burn on Apalachicola National Forest Today

The Apalachicola National Forest is conducting a prescribed burn today, Jan. 28, in Area 332 (Apalachicola National Forest Prescribed Fire Map).  Prescribed fire plays an integral part in reducing fuels, improving all wildlife habitat, controlling competing vegetation, controlling disease and improving forage.

Drivers and residents are reminded of the possiblity of unexpected shifting winds that could increase the risk of smoke on the road during prescribed burns.  Always proceed with caution and please remember to reduce speed and turn headlights on if visibility is affected by smokey conditions.

This prescribed burn is one of many burns the Apalachicola National Forest will be conducting during the 2010 prescribed fire season.  The National Forests in Florida is among those leading the nation in prescribed fire.  Prescribed burning in selected areas are conducted every three to five years in which approximately 100,000 to 175,000 acres of national forest lands are burned annually in the Ocala, Osceola and Apalachicola National Forests.

Dangerous flood conditions on the Florida Trail

Suwannee River swamping the Florida Trail

Suwannee River swamping the Florida Trail

Due to massive rainfall in southern Georgia, the Suwannee and Econfina Rivers are flooding their banks in North Florida, swamping the Florida Trail under several feet of swift-moving water. Hikers are advised to avoid the Florida Trail along the Suwannee River between Deep Creek in Osceola National Forest and St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge in Florida’s Panhandle. For details about specific segments of the Florida Trail currently under floodwaters, please see the Florida Trail Association Notice to Hikers regards river flooding.