The Salt Lake Wildlife Management Area consists of 7,805 acres of mostly open pine lands, hammocks and wetlands nestled between the St. Johns River and four neighboring lakes (Ruth, Loughman, Salt and South Lake). The property is positioned in the northen half of Brevard County near the town of Mims. Recreational activities include hiking, biking, paddling, fishing, horseback riding, wildlife viewing and seasonal hunting.
Entrance Sign and Information Kiosk
To the Main Entrance on Arch Road:
From Interstate 95, take exit 223 and head west on SR 46 for about 0.8 miles. Turn left on Turpentine Road and go 1.5 miles. Turn right onto Panther Lane and drive 0.5 miles. Turn left onto Arch Road. Entrance to Salt Lake WMA will be straight ahead about 0.3 miles. GPS coordinates: N28° 38.411 W80° 53.388.
To the Walk-in Entrance on Dairy Road:From Interstate 95, take exit 223 and head west on SR 46 for about 0.8 miles. Turn left on Turpentine Road and go 1.3 miles. Turn left on Guil Drive, drive 0.2 miles, then turn right on Ford Road. Follow Ford Road for about 0.5 miles at which point it becomes Dairy Road. Walk-in Entrance will be on your right. Parking only has room for about 2 or 3 cars. GPS coordinates: N28° 38.316 W80° 52.480.
No fees required. Area is open 1.5 hours before sunrise until 1.5 hours after sunset, 365 days of the year.
The Salt Lake WMA has a 3.5 mile, white-blazed trail that starts at the main entrance and follows Powerline Road for a couple of miles before looping back on some adjacent forest roads. There are also numerous unmarked trails that can be hiked as well.
Probably the most scenic trail is the one by Indian Fields near the St. Johns River. It passes through an old abandonned orchard where you can still find oranges, grapefruit, guavas and surinam cherries growing.
Another nice spot worth seeing is the picnic area located on the north end of South Lake. Vegetation was cleared so visitors can get a good view of the lake. The quickest way to get there would be to enter through the Dairy Road walk-in entrance and follow the sandy trail southward.
The old ranch site also has some picturesque scenes like the one shown below. Unfortunately a wildfire in 2009 went through the area and killed a lot of the trees. Fortunately mother nature with the help of the FWC are busy restoring the land but it may take a while.
New Foot Bridge
Bicycle riding is permitted on any of the named or numbered roads within the Salt Lake WMA. Most of these roads are typically hard packed but occassionally riders may encounter standing water, tall grass or soft sand. Total road distance is about 11 miles.
Horse are prohibited during hunting season. Equestians may use any of the named or numbered roads within the Salt Lake WMA for horseback riding. Trailer parking is available at the main entrance on Arch Road. Riders under the age of 16 are required to wear a helmet. Proof of current negative Coggins Test for horses is required.
If you have a canoe or a kayak, you may want to check out some of the neighboring lakes. The Salt Lake WMA has a put-in for Salt Lake at the end of Paces Landing Road. From there you can paddle to Loughman and Ruth Lake and into the St. Johns River. Best times to paddle are during the summer and fall when water levels are normally high. Be advised! The lakes are frequently visited by airboaters. Be sure to make yourself as visible as possibly by wearing something with bright colors. Use your paddle as a flag if necessary.
No camping is allowed in the Salt Lake WMA.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission manages hunting at Salt Lake WMA. For information on regulations and current hunting schedules, please go to MyFWC.com.
Hunting Schedule 2012 - 2013 Archery Sep. 22 - Oct. 7 Muzzle Gun Oct. 26 - 28 General Gun Nov. 10 - 18 Small Game Dec. 7 - 9, 14 - 16, Jan. 4 - 6, 11 - 13, Feb. 8 - 10, 15 - 17 Wild Hog - Dog Jan. 17 - 20 Spring Turkey Mar. 16 - 19, 20 - 24
More will be added to this section later.
Old Ranch Site Ruins
File Formats Downloads TopoGraphix ExpertGPS trails.gpx Garmin MapSource trails.mps, trails.gdb Google Earth trails.kmz National Geographic TOPO! trails.tpo
Prairie Iris Hairy Chaffhead
Sky Blue Lupine
Last updated on 15-May-2012.