Bull Creek Wildlife Management Area

The Bull Creek Wildlife Management Area consists of 23,646 acres of mostly open pine lands and wetlands surrounding the confluence of Bull Creek and Crabgrass Creek. The property is situated in the eastern half of Osceola County, Florida near the town of Hollopaw.  Recreational activies include hiking, biking, kayaking, fishing, horseback riding and seasonal hunting.

Entrance Sign Sign-In Kiosk
Entrance sign and information kiosk

Directions

To Crabgrass Road Entrance:

From Interstate 95, take exit 180 and head west on US Hwy 192 for about 19.4 miles. Turn left on Crabgrass Road. Follow dirt road for about 5.7 miles until it ends. Entrance to Bull Creek WMA will be on your left. GPS coordinates: N28 05.061 W80 58.031.

Hours and Fees

Area is open from dusk to dawn, 365 days of the year.  No entrance fee required. Visitors must sign in and out at the kiosk when entering and leaving the property.

Hiking

A 13.8 mile section of the Florida National Scenic Trail passes through the Bull Creek WMA. The section starts at the Levee 73 gate on US Hwy 192, crosses the scenic Crabgrass Creek, then follows the abandoned Union Cypress Railroad along Bull Creek before ending at the Forever Florida crossover. A 6.4 mile white-blazed trail picks up from there and loops back north, passes the main entrance to the WMA before merging back into the FNST near Cemetery Road.

Hikers More Hikers Forever Florida Crossover
Backpackers along the Florida National Scenic Trail

Crabgrass Creek Old Crabgrass Bridge Water Level in 2008
New and the old Crabgrass Creek Bridge. Rebuilt in 2008.

New Bridge #2 New Bridge #3
Foot Bridges along the old Union Cypress Railroad Grade

Yoke Branch
Yoke Branch

Cypress Swamp Cypress Trees
Cypress Swamp

Camping

Bull Creek WMA has two primitive campsites for thru-hikers on the Florida National Scenic Trail. One is located on the north end of the property near where the trail crosses Crabgrass Creek. This campsite is known as Jane Green. The other campsite, Little Scrub, is on the south end about 0.7 miles northwest of Billy Lake in a patch of scrub oak. Both campsites are equipped with fire-rings, pitcher pumps and picnic tables.

Jane Green Camp Jane Green Picnic Table
Jane Green Campsite

Little Scrub Camp Sign Little Scrub Fire Ring Little Scrub Well Pump
Little Scrub Campsitehttp://www.floridatrail.org/Florida-Trail/centralflorida/BullCreek.html

Sunset Campfire
Overnight camping at Bull Creek

Note: This area also has a large hunting campground located at the entrance off of Crabgrass Road. The campground is only open during hunting season and is limited to tents, trailers or self-propelled camping vehicles. A pitcher pump and two pit-toilets are available (bring toilet-paper). 

Fishing

Probably the nicest place to see in the Bull Creek WMA is the scenic Billy Lake. Its cool refreshing waters are a welcome sight after coming off the dry open pinelands. It's a fairly small lake but the cypress lined shores offer plenty of places to fish from. You can also launch a small non-motorized boat at the end of Billy Lake Road.

Billy Lake Billy Lake
Billy Lake

Another nice place to fish is along the levee near  Jane Green Creek and the flood control gates. Be prepared for a long hike. It's about 2.6 miles from the nearest parking area long US Hwy 192.

Jane Green Creek Flood Gate Flood Control
Flood Control Structure (S-161A) along Levee 73 near Jane Green Creek in 2004

Canoeing and Kayaking

If you have a canoe or a kayak, probably the best time to go to Bull Creek is right after a hurricane has dumped a ton of rain on the area.  As you can see in the pictures below, it can be quite a spectacular sight as most of the palmettoes and shrubs even trail blazes will be completely under water leaving just the tops of trees to be seen.

No Palmettoes Kayaking the Florida Trail Floating Chair
Bull Creek in 2004 after 3 hurricanes hit Florida.

Other times you may just want to bring your boat just to get across Ronnie Ford or Mizell Ford. Hunters commonly do this so they can get to hunting areas on the other side of Bull Creek.

Ronnie Ford Mizell Ford
Ronnie and Mizell Ford

Unusual Sights

At one time Bull Creek had its very own astronomical observatory located just south of the entrance near the Hunters Campground. It was built back in 1989 by the Florida Institute of Technology. The 26-foot domed building housed a 25-inch diameter telescope and several computers. Each night the computers would automatically open the dome and take pictures of the stars. Scientest and researchers could also remotely control the telescope and download the imagery via a phone line back to the F.I.T.'s Melbourne campus. The dome was dismanteled several years ago after the school's 20 year free lease on the land expired.

FIT Observatory
Bull Creek Astronomical Observatory


One of the unusual things you might come across while visiting Bull Creek is the old Crabgrass Creek Cemetery. It's located in an oak hammock near the end of Cemetery Road. The most prominent and oldest tombstone is Kathrine Lanier's dated January 15, 1895. Interestingly, if you look at some of the old maps of this area, there was a town called Lanier just south of Billy Lake.

Kathrine Lanier's Tombstone (1895) Andrew Crosby's Tombstone (1924)
Crabgrass Creek Cemetery

Jeep for sale!  Good condition.  Just needs an engine, some wheels and other nonessential parts.  This old wreck can be found hidden in the palmettoes between Crabgrass Creek and the cemetery. 

Old Car Inside Old Car
Old Jeep

Here lies Christine -- an old car lying upside down near Crabgrass Creek.

Upside Down Car
Christine

Hunting

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission manages hunting at Charles H. Bronson State Forest. For up-to-date information on regulations and current hunting schedules, please see MyFWC.com.

Check Station
Checkstation

Hunting Schedule 2013 - 2014
Archery Sep. 14 - Oct. 13
Muzzle Gun Oct. 19 - 21
General Gun Nov. 2 - Dec. 29
Small Game Dec. 30 - Mar. 2
Spring Turkey Mar. 8 - 9, Mar. 15 - Apr. 20

Maps

These are maps I've created for the Bull Creek area.  You can enlarge them by clicking on the associated thumbnail image.  Note: To print a map you may need Adobe Reader installed. Also some of these maps might require Google Earth or the plug-in to be installed.

Topo Map
Print Map

Detailed Map

Infrared Aerial Map

KML Photo Viewer

George W. Hopkins Plat Map of 1915

SJRWMD Topo Maps from 1920

Aerial Maps from 1944

Post Office Map

GPS Data

File Formats Downloads
TopoGraphix ExpertGPS trails.gpx
Garmin MapSource trails.mps, trails.gdb
Google Earth trails.kmz
National Geographic TOPO! trails.tpo

Flowers

Pine Hyacinth Lanceleaf Rosegentian Yelloweyed Grass
Pine Hyacinth Lanceleaf Rosegentian Yelloweyed Grass
Day Flower Beach False Foxglove Loblolly Bay
Day Flower Beach False Foxglove Loblolly Bay
Tuberous Grasspink Fetterbush Hooded Pitcher Plant
Tuberous Grasspink Fetterbush Hooded Pitcher Plant
Greenvein Ladiestresses Crowpoison Pineland Chaffhead
Greenvein Ladiestresses Crowpoison Pineland Chaffhead
Grassleaf Barbara's Buttons
Grassleaf Barbara's Buttons

Local Weather

Trail Reports

Additional Information

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Last updated on 18-Nov-2013.