Lake County Parks & Trails Newsletter
 
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The Lake County Department of Public Resources, Parks & Trails Division, manages more than three dozen parks, preserves and boat ramps. The Division's park rangers lead regularly scheduled nature hikes and bird and butterfly surveys in a select few of these parks in addition to properties owned by the Lake County Water Authority and St. Johns River Water Management District.

Park of the Month
Palatlakaha River Park
Palatlakaha River Park offers boaters access to the Crooked River and the Clermont Chain of Lakes. The park has two fishing piers, playground, and a pavilion with a grill. The park has a 0.8 mile loop trail that passes through the 18 acres of habitat managed for the Florida Scrub-Jay, as well as a Live Oak-Bald Cypress Hammock. The area is good for birding especially in the spring and fall. Butterflies and other animals are also often visible along the trail. The trail has numerous educational signs that point out various plants along the way. Read More...
Upcoming Events
9 - 11 a.m. at Ferndale Preserve, Ferndale
Enjoy a leisurely yet educational walking event focusing on the history of the local area. Reservations are encouraged.
7:30 - 11 a.m. at Ellis Acres Reserve, Paisley
Volunteers wanted to assist in surveying the population of birds & butterflies on the property. Experience is a plus but not required. Must bring own binoculars. Field guide, water, snack, hat, sunscreen, insect repellent are also suggested. Reservations are encouraged.
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. at PEAR Park Wildlife Conservation Area, Leesburg
Explore the nature center which features a collection of rocks, minerals, fossils, sand and shells. A hands-on mini course on Identifying Rocks takes place from 10 AM - Noon for students ages 10 and up, accompanied by an adult.
8 - 11:30 a.m. at PEAR Park Gateway, Leesburg
A hands-on opportunity to learn about birding and what is involved. Class will briefly cover many topics followed by a short hike. Reservations are encouraged.
9 - 11:30 a.m. at PEAR Park Nature Center, Leesburg
Local expert birder Peg Lindsay will guide participants through birding 101 including topics on ethics, binoculars, and other information helpful to the beginning birder. Reservations are encouraged.
7:30 - 11 a.m. at Lake May Reserve, Eustis
Volunteers wanted to assist in surveying the population of birds & butterflies on the property. Experience is a plus but not required. Must bring own binoculars. Field guide, water, snack, hat, sunscreen, insect repellent are also suggested. Reservations are encouraged.
9 a.m. - 1 p.m. at Lake Norris Conservation Area, Eustis
One of the best paddles in Lake County, guides will take you on a tour of therenowned blackwater creek, a part of the Wekiva Wild and Scenic River System. Paddlers can expect to see woodstorks, ibis, and warblers along cypress tree-lined shores. Reservations are required. To make reservations for the paddling adventures, call the Lake County Water Authority at (352) 343-3777.
9 - 11:30 a.m. at PEAR Park Nature Center, Leesburg
Class II of the Beginning Birder series. This class will cover bird calls and songs, note taking, Apps and other technology that has entered the world of birding. Reservations are encouraged.
8 a.m. - 12 p.m. at Lake May Reserve, Eustis
Join members of the Lake County Cooperative Invasive Species Management Areas (CISMA) chapter as we help clean up Lake May Reserve of invasive camphor trees and caesar's weed to mark national Invasive Species Awareness Week (NISAW) Reservations are encouraged.
6 - 8 p.m. at PEAR Park Gateway, Leesburg
Join staff on an adventure to see what animal life is out and about as the sun sets at Pear Park. Reservations are encouraged.
view all events »
 
Information about Guided Hikes & Surveys

Park rangers recomends participants of the nature hikes and bird & butterfly surveys to wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Hikers should also bring binoculars, field guides, cameras, sunscreen, insect repellent, water and snacks.

Reservations are required for all guided hikes and bird & butterfly surveys. Most hikes are limited to the first 20 individuals to place reservations. To make reservations for the guided hikes and bird & butterfly surveys, call the Lake County Parks & Trails Division at (352) 253-4950 or e-mail parksandtrails@lakecountyfl.gov.


HIKING DIFFICULTY RATING
1 - These hikes offer an easy pace and an average-to-sedentary level of fitness. Hikes are usually on a paved trail or boardwalk. Distance is typically 1 mile or less.

2 - An average level of fitness is recommended as these moderate hikes may be on a trail of uneven terrain. Distance is typically 2 miles or less.

3 - These hikes are generally more challenging, depending on an individual’s experience and level of fitness. Hikes are more difficult due to hills and distances of greater than 2 miles.
Information about PADDLING ADVENTURES

The Lake County Water Authority coordinates all paddling adventures. For more information on these guided tours, contact the Lake County Water Authority at 352-324-6141.

Reservations are required for all paddling adventures. Most paddling adventures are limited to the first 15 vessels to place reservations. To make reservations for the paddling adventures, call the Lake County Water Authority at 352-324-6141.

PADDLING DIFFICULTY RATING
1 — These paddling adventures offer an easy pace and an average-to-sedentary level of fitness. Paddling may be on local creeks or shorelines. Time is usually two hours or less and distance is typically 1 mile or less, depending on currents.

2 — An average level of fitness is recommended as these moderate paddles may be on a blueway with obstructions or currents. Time is usually three hours or less and distance is typically 2-4 miles.

3 — These paddling adventures are generally more challenging, depending on an individual’s experience and level of fitness. Paddling is more difficult due to length of blueway and paddling conditions. Time is more than three hours and distance is typically more than 4 miles.
 

12929 County Landfill Road, Tavares, Florida 32778 • 352-253-4950 • www.lakecountyfl.gov

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