One of Florida's most popular and unique urban pathways, the Pinellas Trail stretches from St. Petersburg north to Tarpon Springs, connecting several county parks, coastal areas and communities. Its multiple access points, mile markers and parking areas make the trail—and the communities it connects—very popular destinations among cyclists.
For the first 15 miles from St. Petersburg the trail crosses dozens of pedestrian bridges with sweeping views of the urban landscape. The most scenic of these is the 0.25-mile Cross Bayou Bridge, which spans Boca Ciega Bay.
Farther north lie the towns of Largo, Clearwater and Dunedin. In downtown Clearwater the trail merges with wide sidewalks and a newly resurfaced bicycle boulevard. Use caution through here because the trail crosses roads with heavy traffic. Dunedin offers a particularly pleasant scene, with shops, restaurants, public restrooms and parking. The Gulf of Mexico is just two blocks away, worth the brief detour for lovely coastal scenery.
In the quiet township of Palm Harbor pause on the Bayshore Boulevard pedestrian bridge at Mile Marker 29 for more Gulf scenery. From Tarpon Springs's quaint business district the trail continues under US 19 to Keystone Road (CR 582) at Melon Street. An extension will continue along Keystone to East Lake Road, linking an already existing section of the trail. The Keystone Road link is expected to be complete in 2013; until then, you can pick up the other 4.25-mile section of trail at Keystone and E. Lake Road/CR 611. The trail heads south to John Chesnut Sr. Park.
The Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail is accessible from numerous places along its route. For a trail guide and detailed map of access points and parking, visit Guide to the Pinellas Trail online.