Roger's Florida

Monday, January 30, 2012

DeLeon Springs State Park

This "Skunk Ape" greeted us from the water access to DeLeon Springs State Park the other day. We put in at Tedders Fish Camp and headed into the park, but you can also rent canoes and kayaks inside the park. Head for Spring Garden Run for great wildlife viewing. (Get good directions across the lake before you go.) We wrote up this area in our book, 25 Kayak & Canoe Trips in East-Central Florida last year on page 29. Access more information at:

Monday, January 23, 2012

Longleaf Pine Preserve - Caution!

We wrote up a six mile hiking trail for this preserve in our recent book. And that writeup is still good. But, on the same preserve there is also a BLUE Trail that purports to be an 11 mile hiking/biking loop trail from the east entrance off Pioneer Trail to the west entrance off Route 44 near Deland, FL. DON'T do it! About 6.7 miles out it becomes impassable due to water, even in this drought season. It's not even mowed and, even if you could make it past the water, there is the danger of losing the trail. So stick with our 6 mile recommended hike or bike trail.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Hiking Florida - New release - update!

25 Short Hikes and Interesting Walks in Central Florida - (Revised 2011)
As I hiked along the trails of Central Florida I repeatedly met people from Florida and elsewhere around the country. We would talk and they would eventually ask me, “Where else can we go to hike?” That’s what prompted me to write this book. Now, we have updated it for 2011. More places to go out and walk, hike and enjoy the great outdoors in central Florida.
The “common man or woman” can handle these easy to moderate trails. We tell you where to go, how to get there and explain what you may see. More than 60 full color photos enhance the interactive nature of this book. Its unique format and size make it a handy reference guide to stick in your back pocket to accompany you on the trails. Review it at: or order it at: Be sure to ask for the 2011 edition!
Price: $19.95


Monday, January 9, 2012

Compromised compasses - Warning!

To all of my outdoor friends - A basic compass has probably saved us all from a night in the woods over the years. But in the last two years I've had no less than three of them get compromised. Couldn't figure out why. Then, this past Sunday, while conducting a nature tour with the Schwerdfeger Family in Florida, we discussed the issue. Seems that about two years ago I started carrying a Faraday flashlight in my survival kit. That's the kind you shake to get light. Mr. Schwerdfeger, who teaches orienteering classes, advised me that they have heavy duty magnets in them that can influence, or even demagnetize a compass. Bingo!!! I've always carried a backup compass in my survival kit, along with the flashlight. I'll be keeping them seperate from now on! How did I get to be this old and not figure that out? :-) Hope you also learn from this. Enjoy the great outdoors - safely!