Tucker Hill Day Use Area - Withlacoochee State Forest
The Tucker Hill day use area of Withlacoochee State Forest is your gateway to a variety of hiking, biking and equestrian trails. Located at the Forestry Service fire tower along Croom Road, there is ample parking and facilities for everyone interested in exploring the west side of Croom Tract.

A large parking area is available for hikers and bicyclists at the entrance to the hiking trailheads. Restrooms are provided, as well as a picnic area with barbecue grills. Just a short distance away is a parking area intended specifically for vehicles with horse trailers. The Forestry service facilities and fire tower at the site are not open to the public.

There are three loop hiking trails with trailheads at this location. The "A" (northern) loop is 7.39 miles in length, the "B" (middle) loop is 8.97 miles long, and the "C" (southern) loop is 7.70 miles. All three trails are "stacked" ... which means you can do various combinations of the loops to extend your hike. See the hiking trail map for details. The main trails are blazed in yellow, with connectors marked in blue. A portion of the "A" loop is also part of the Florida National Scenic Trail, and is blazed with orange markings.

This area is also home to an extensive network of off-road bicycle trails, maintained by the SWAMP mountain bke club. The "Yellow" loop trail is 12 miles long and the "Blue" loop is 32 miles in length. There are an additional network of 8 miles of trails used as connectors and shortcut bailouts. Hikers are allowed on the bicycle trails, but bikers are only permitted on trails specifically designated for bicycles.

A large network of horse trails also wind through the Croom Tract of the Wiothlacoochee State Forest, although much of the trail network consists of designated forest roads that are dirt, shell or sand. Horse riders are not allowed on hiking or off-road bicycling trails. Equestrian trails are marked with wide blue bands that circle the tree trunk.

None of the trails in this area have any water or facilities, other than what is available at the trailheads. So be sure to bring what you need for your hike or ride. Although not designated specifically as a camping area, a few primitive campsites are available north of the Tucker Hill trailhead and north of Croom Road between Forest Road 9 and Nobleton Road. Camping areas are marked with white banded trees. Full featured campsites are available at the nearby Silver Lake and Hog Island Recreation Areas.

History buffs will also want to visit the Tucker Hill Cemetery, located in the forest just south of the entrance to the hiking trailheads. The cemetery, dating from the late 1800's, is the final resting place of Civil War veteran Henry Crawford Tucker, his family, and other early pioneers who settled the area.
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