Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area

Visitors can come and see what is considered the largest stand of cypress forest still left uncut in the state of Florida. Over 900 acres of virgin cypress trees can be found growing along Jim Creek. Tosohatchee also has some of the oldest slash pines, some nearly 250 years old. Recreational activities include hiking, bird watching, fishing, horseback riding and limited hunting.

Entrance Sign in 2006 Office Building in 2011 Entrance Kiosk in 2011
Entrance sign, office and information kiosk

Location

This wildlife management area is comprised of approximately 30,700 acres located along the St. Johns River in east Orange County.

Directions

Main Entrance:

From Interstate 95, take exit 215 and head west towards Orlando on State Road 50.  After about 10 miles, turn left on Taylor Creek Road and follow it for about 3 miles. The entrance to Tosohatchee WMA will be on your left just after you cross the Taylor Creek bridge. GPS coordinates: N28 29.901 W80 59.847.

South Tosohatchee Entrance:

From Interstate 95, take exit 201 and head west towards Orlando on State Road 520. After about 6.8 miles, you should see a tall chain-link fence with a gate on your left.  This is the entrance to South Tosohatchee. Please be sure to close gate upon entry. GPS coordinates: N28 22.426 W80 54.254.

Hours

The area is open from 8:00 A.M. until dusk, 365 days of the year.

Entrance Fees

Self-pay (cash or personal check) at the entrance kiosk: $3 per vehicle. Admission is free if you are thru-hiker on the Florida National Scenic Trail. You are also exempt if you're under the age of 16 or over 65, handicapped, or on military leave for 30 days or less.

Entrance Fees in 2003

For a laugh check out the notice that was posted at the entrance kiosk several years ago. I guess you can say the park ranger has heard of every excuse for not paying the entrance fee.

History

Tosohatchee is loaded with history. Everything from time lines, previous land owners, old buildings, abandoned timber railroads, military trails from the Second Seminole War and Indian mounds are covered below.

Historic Buildings and Ruins

Time Line and Events

Oldest Recorded Road

Tosohatchee Railway

Indian Mounds

Free Flowing Artesian Wells

George McCulloch's Hand Drawn Map

Cattle Dipping Vats

Sydney O. Chase Collection

Hiking

A 11.3 mile section of the Florida National Scenic Trail passes through Tosohatchee. It starts at the end of St. Nicholas Road in Christmas and ends near SR 528 at Yates Road. There's also over 22 miles of white blazed trails, interconnecting yellow trails, blue spur/camp trails and interpretive trails through out Tosohatchee. More than enough to satisfy the avid hiker.

Some of the best places to hike include around Tootoosahatchee Creek, the Beehead Ranch area and south of SR 520.

Tosohatchee Creek Bridge in 2004 Tosohatchee Creek in 2009
Tootoosahatchee Creek

New FT Bridge near Powerline Road in 2009
Foot Bridge along Powerline Road

Camping

Tosohatchee has 3 primitive campsites: Youth Camp, Tiger Branch Camp and Horse Camp. Each campsite is equipped with fire rings, picnic tables and benches. Only tent camping is permitted. Campers at the Tiger Branch campsite must leave their vehicles parked at the Youth Camp parking area and backpack in. Horseback riders must leave their trailers at the Horse Camp parking area.

Campers must contact the office at (407) 568-5893 at least 2 weeks in advance, no earlier than 60 days (90 days for the Youth Camp), to make reservations.  Camping fees are $4.00 per night per person.

Youth Camp in 2011 Tiger Branch Camp in 2004
Youth Camp and Tiger Branch Campsite

Fishing

Now for those fisherman out there. Tosohatchee has several fishing spots.  The most popular ones are the borrow pits just south of the SR 528.  Alligators do hang around these man-made lakes, so swimming is not recommended. Another popular spot to go fishing is at the end of Power Line Road where it meets the St. Johns River. 

Lake Charlie in 2011 St. Johns River at the End of Powerline Road in 2011
Lake Charlie and the St. Johns River

Hunting

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission manages hunting at Tosohatchee. For up-to-date information on regulations and current hunting schedules, please go to MyFWC.com.

Check Station in 2001
Checkstation

Hunting Schedule 2016 - 2017
Archery Oct. 6 - 9, 13 - 16
Muzzle Gun Oct. 27 - 30, Nov. 3 - 6
General Gun Nov. 17 - 20, 25 - 27
Wild Hog - Dog Jan 13 - 19, Feb. 10 - 16
Spring Turkey Mar. 18 - 20, 31 - Apr. 2, 14 - 16

Maps

These are some of the maps for the Tosohatchee WMA. You can enlarge them by clicking on the thumbnail image. Printer versions of the maps require Adobe Reader.

Entrance Map 2009

Print Map

DLG Map of Tosohatchee (1/5/2000)


Topo Map North Topo Map South
Print Map Print Map

 
Aerial Map North Aerial Map South
Print Map Print Map


KML Photo Viewer

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

Prairie Iris Roundpad St. Johns Wort Snowy Orchid
Prairie Iris Roundtop St. Johns Wort Snowy Orchid
Scarlet Hibiscus Small Butterwort Bog White Violet
Scarlet Hibiscus Small Butterwort Bog White Violet
Common Blue Violet Pineland Daisy Coastal Mock Vervain
Common Blue Violet Pineland Daisy Coastal Mock Vervain
Blackeyed Susan Swamp Rose Mallow
Blackeyed Susan Swamp Rose Mallow

Local Weather

Trail Notes

Additional Information

 

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Last updated on 15-Sep-2016.