Hickory Hammock is a 9+ mile linear trail that meanders through the Kissimmee River P.U.A. and is in the process going through the largest river restoration in the history of Florida. Because the Kissimmee River flows from Lake Okeechobee and the Everglades, it has gone through extensive changes over the last century.
This trail can be hiked in one day, but doing an overnight makes it much more enjoyable. Because the campsite is located only 2 miles inland, it makes a perfect overnight hike for kids and first time hikers.
Two trailheads provide access to this great hiking destination. The Hickory Hammock Trailhead is located east of Sebring, Florida on US 98 near the town of Lorida on Hickory Hammock Road off of US 98. Bluff Hammock Trailhead is located further down in the town of Lorida, a few miles down US 98.
Camping options are primitive only with no running water or toilets at the site. A picnic table and fire ring are the only amenities available. This campsite can be found about 3 miles from the Hickory Hammock Trailhead. An equestrian campsite is available in the area with solar powered lights and composting toilets, but a fee and reservation is required from SWFTMD. Call 1-800-250-4200 for more details.
This hike is dominated by lush palm hammocks and wild citrus trees. Some of these citrus trees are said to have been here since Spanish Colonial times. Fruit is free for the picking, providing you with a fresh fruit energy burst along your hike.
Along with fantastic views of the Kissimmee River, a large wooden boardwalk spans over Bluff Hammock and the canal. It is a great place to see birds, snakes and even the occasional alligator.
Old growth oaks abound in this forest with wild bromeliads and resurrection ferns covering the trees with a green fur. This is especially beautiful a day after a fresh rain when the many air plants and lichen absorb the sun and water, creating a colorful covering of the entire forest from floor to tree top.
This is a great hike for overnighters, day hikers, kids and first timers.