Message from Our Director

Chuck Hatcher

February is Florida Hiking Trails and American Heart Month   

Hiking and Heart Health go Hand-in-Hand 

Last month we kicked off the new year with First Day Hikes. Over 2,000 of you hiked 3,100 miles at 49 parks. I can’t think of a better way to start a new year than focusing on heart health and physical exercise in the great outdoors. February continues the trend with Florida Hiking Trails Month, and I invite you to keep the “new year-healthy you” routine going at any of the 154 Florida State Parks that offer hiking trails.  

February is also American Heart Month. Adopting a heart healthy exercise routine may benefit you for years to come. Walking and hiking outside have many benefits including getting fresh air and sunshine and observing wildlife in their natural habitats. Florida’s trail system crosses the state and allows an excellent opportunity to start, continue or further an exercise routine that will take you far this year. Walk along 2.4 paved miles on Dunnellon Trail’s historic railroad and enjoy beautiful views along the way. The 16-mile Tallahassee-St. Marks Historic Railroad State Trail stretches from the capital city to the coastal community of St. Marks and is a popular destination for those in the panhandle. If you’re further south, the Florida Keys Overseas Heritage Trail offers access to many points of interest including 10 Florida State Parks. Join me as I lace up my shoes and hit the trails this month! 

See you in the parks, 

Chuck Hatcher, Director

Florida State Parks