Thursday, April 11, 2013

Payne Prairie State Preserve Review

We have been to this campground many times; it is conveniently located to our visits to Florida. It is also one of Florida's least expensive state parks. RV Sites are spaced well enough. We can always come up with some where to walk from the campground to the visitors center and observation tower. This is a multistory...maybe four story tower.  We have hiked to the tower MANY times hoping to see the Buffalo that roam here but only once have we seen some. We have seen deer, horses...the buffalo are elusive.
 The buffao herd has been thinned.  It appears that the grass is always green on the other side of the fence and the big man buffalo's were escaping.  How would you like to go outside and see a big buffalo in your yard??  So the men are gone, the boys have been clipped, and the women remain.

There is more hiking accessible by leaving the park and going to the
north side of the park....La Chua trail  We have seen buffalo in this area...
and gators...just make sure you pick a cooler day as there is no shade.
There are other trails within the park that we have also done..the visitor's
center has all the info for you.

We can bike around the roads in the park or take our bikes to a local bike trail, the Gainesville/Hawthorne bike trail. This is 16 miles long and paved...multiuse trail.  We managed to get 5 - 6 miles riding the park's
paved roads.

Restaurants nearby??? WELL, our favorite pizza joint in all of Florida and beyond is Blue Highway Pizza just south of the entrance to Paynes Prairie on route 441 in Micanopy. They also have another place in Gainesville. We will go out of our way to get this pizza; maybe that
is one of the reasons we go to Paynes Prairie so often...hmmmm.

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