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  1. #1
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    Where near Orlando that allows hammocks?

    My 6 yr old son & I have each just got our camping hammocks (HH Cub & Explorer, respectively). So...where within about 1 hr of Orlando, FL would be nice for us to go? Before xmas, I should think.

    My wife will be with us but in a tent. I'd like to avoid the RV's campground sort of thing. More primitive but definitely want to be able to have a campfire. Don't mind packing in water but would prefer site water. I don't want to walk far with our little bloke.

    I've only camped once in the USA - all the rest was in Australia - so I'd welcome some suggestions. I'm just not familiar with the camping scene here.

  2. #2
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Ocala National Forest just north if you up Highway 19.
    You can hang anywhere you find trees!
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  3. #3
    Senior Member bear bag hanger's Avatar
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    Seminole State Forest is closer. Take Hwy 46 from I-4 and go west. Once you cross the Wekiva River, the next right you can make takes you to the parking lot. There is a shelter on the Florida Trail you can hike to in about a mile and the Blackwater Creek campsite in three to four miles. Plenty of hanging trees in either place.

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    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAD777 View Post
    Ocala National Forest just north if you up Highway 19.
    You can hang anywhere you find trees!

    One of my favorite places to hike in Florida. There are gobs of good hangs in the Ocala NF.
    Trust nobody!

  5. #5
    Senior Member GrayDog's Avatar
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    A great resource is floridahikes.com

    There's so many great hanging spots in Florida that even the skeeters sleep in hammocks!
    hammock [ham-uhk] noun
    Man's successful attempt to sleep on a cloud

  6. #6
    Senior Member GrayDog's Avatar
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    Why don't y'all come to the 3rd Annual Florida Hang. It's promising to be a family friendly little affair with about a hundred other hangers and it's in one of the prettiest areas of the Ocala NF
    hammock [ham-uhk] noun
    Man's successful attempt to sleep on a cloud

  7. #7
    Senior Member domromer's Avatar
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    I hammocked at Kelly park campground, it's very nice and you can swim in the spring which cuts through the park.

    Sorry just read the part about no campgrounds. I'd say your best bet then is the national forest.
    Last edited by domromer; 12-05-2012 at 09:42.

  8. #8
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    Thanks everyone. I've thought about Ocala NF, but just aren't familiar enough with it to pick a place. Are you allowed to make a campfire anywhere you choose to camp?

    That 'floridahikes' site looks like a good resource.

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    Little Big Econ is also a great place for a quick camping trip. I usually go by canoe, but come across many hikers, even some with younger kids. Most of the established spots have fire rings and there are a few 'beach front' spots within an easy hike. In the Florida National Forests you can camp anywhere when it is NOT hunting season, only established camp facilities or primitive sites during hunting season, common sense when it comes to fires, more details at the state's website.

  10. #10
    Prefers life at 12 MPH. FLRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinstaafl View Post
    Thanks everyone. I've thought about Ocala NF, but just aren't familiar enough with it to pick a place. Are you allowed to make a campfire anywhere you choose to camp?

    That 'floridahikes' site looks like a good resource.
    Check the Ocala alerts and notices page for any fire bans before you go. Also, another good resource is the Florida Forest Service wildfires page. As of right now, yes, you can build a fire where you camp--as long as you use LNT methods for it (a mound fire) or an established fire ring (most of the common campsites in the forest have one).

    It's general gun season right now in Ocala, so be careful of where you camp. From now until January 20th, you need to camp either at a designated site or in a designated wilderness area. Fortunately, one of the nicest spots in Ocala, Hidden Pond, is located in the middle of the Juniper Prairie Wilderness Area. We did an hang there back in October (link is to trip report), and the spot is absolutely beautiful. It's an easy three-and-an-half-mile hike in from the Pat's Island trail head along the Florida Trail (follow the orange blazes).

    On the weekends, that spot might be a bit busy, though, so be prepared to share the site with others. Don't worry, though; there's plenty of room to spread out.

    Hope it helps!
    "Just prepare what you can and enjoy the rest."
    --Floridahanger

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