warm weather( read hot) camping

11:30 p.m. on February 24, 2012 (EST)
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hello to all and thanks for the site. i have not camped in the florida heat since the early 80's and want to stretch the season as long as possible not only for backpacking but also for canoe and truck camping with my grandsons. were sixth generation floridians so we can deal with the bugs but the heat and espeacialy the humidity have me worried. i have hiked and camped my whole life so backpacking seems to be a natural choice for me and even the boys in mild weather but i want to spend as much time as possible exploring with my wife Michelle so any tips on making sleeping in the bush bareable will be much appreciated.


3:00 a.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
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Welcome to TS and a tent with lots of mesh should be a start.

7:01 a.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
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1,261 forum posts

Welcome to TS!


I live in Clermont Florida.

 My camping season runs from late October thru late March, then I turn into a watersports maniac because of the heat and mosquito's.

Your own statement ought to be your guide for extending your season: "canoe and truck camping with my grandsons" 

To me, that sounds like a wise thing to do.

Stay near water to cool off.

AS you know, hiking in the summer can be deadly, unless you do it early morning or evening.

If the heat and humidity aren't enough to do you in, there are always those 4:00 PM lightning storms.

 Check out the Florida State Parks. Some of them offer launching spots for canoes and decent campgrounds with facilities.

I'm partial to Lake Louisa State Park...I laid out all the nature trails.

Nice park, has great fishing lakes, 2 canoe launches, a beach on the Clermont Chain of Lakes- and a 20 minute drive from Disney



11:37 a.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
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Buy a popup with an AC unit. The state parks are great.  We used to popup camp at Rainbow River State park for several years in the summer.  The descriptions of the parks are fairly good on the official website.  Pick the ones that have shady camp sites and a water feature.

Forget much in the way of hiking.  The local boy scout troop that is out hiking at least once a month stops for the summer.  The only thing they do is a week long canoe trip on the St. Johns River.  

Hammock camping might be an option but, your best bet is to flee to the Appalachians.  There it's like spring and fall in Florida. Get high enough and there's no mosquitoes.  

2:18 p.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
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thanks for the replies and i think you all are probably right. i had a pop up with air that i gave my brother just before my first grandson was born, he is heavy into the atv stuff and he ended up stripping it down for a atv trailer but has since bought another that he has told me to get any time i want so i guess that is my out for the dead of summer. i much prefer camping away from public camps but the kids don't care anymore than i did when i was there ages, its all an adventure to them.

thanks again for the responses, it really is appreciated, i posted the same question on two other forums and evidently they only respond to thru hikers and alpine climbers, -0- replies.


thanks again.


5:18 p.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
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Well this is a friendly and knowledgeable bunch around here. Hope you hang around and post.  Everybody has good advice and somehow we manage not to get into arguments. There are some in depth discussions though ;).

It's a great place to get info on just about any non-sport outdoor activity that doesn't involve motorized vehicles with the exception being car-camping.

Callahan said:

Welcome to TS and a tent with lots of mesh should be a start.

Check out this tent: Alps Mountaineering Zephyr 3 I have one these.  

I live in FL also and I'm always looking for good places to hike with my 9 year old son. I found this website http://www.floridahikes.com/. It has excellent descriptions of the trails. The owner of the site has hiked most if not all of the trails listed on the site I believe.

BTW Are you in the Apalachicola NF?

7:05 p.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
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BTW Are you in the Apalachicola NF?


i am, the end of my driveway is about 2 miles from the nw corner of bradwell bay which is listed as one of the most difficult hikes in the us if i understand right. i have hiked some of it while scouting for stands years ago but was unwilling to wear waders in and out so i moved on. if you don't mind traveling there is a trail south of fr 329 that i think would fit, it is part of the ft and is well maintained. my wife and i took our 3 & 6 yr old grandsons out on it this morning for just a couple of miles and they didn't want to turn back. i have never been all the way through it so i cant say to much but my wife and i plan to hike it in the next couple of weeks if the showers will give us a break. if you come this way let me know and i can show you a couple of camps within a couple of miles of several trail heads and if you want to paddle while your here the ochloknee river is 1 mile from the end of my driveway and i can give you gps numbers to a last minute camp a freind and i made on a failed attempt to make it from talquin dam to sopchoppy in 2.5 days, we really enjoyed it but like i said we shy from public camps. atleast one of the camps has artisian wells but like much of florida it is slightly sulfur.

as for the opinions in post, yeah i read a thread a little while ago concerning fire arm carry i thought would go on forever...and it may but i resisted the urge to voice my opinion as i felt well represented by 1 or 2 of the responders and didn't feel i could or should add to it especialy being a newbie here. bottom line for me is what i may encounter in nw fla will be night and day to what someone in northern montana could encouter and who knows our own back yards better than you and i? i will say there have a few dismembered bodies found nearby, just a arm and one foot in one case so i am cautious and that is another reason i avoid public camps. the last guy, the one who had killed hikers in ga and nc was camped at brown house camp which i go by twice a day and i almost stoped to talk to him a couple of times but thank god it just didnt feel right. i dont let that keep me in i just try to be more aware and trust my first impession of things.

if you come this way we will be glad to help you anyway we can, sights, shuttle or whatever.


7:15 p.m. on February 25, 2012 (EST)
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oh, i forgot to add you are also welcome to use my canoe, nothing fancy, just a 15.7 mad river i think( i dont care much about brands) but me and my buddy have packed it with about 500 pounds including our weight and had no problems going up or down river other than a stretch where the wind blew so hard up the river that it was white capping, it took more out of us going down river against that than paddlin back up to the bridge on fh-13 and kept us from making to sopchoppy as planned. all these roads should show up on the florida trail maps, the bridge as well.



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