Following a former CSX Railroad corridor, this 11.5-mile paved trail runs from just east of the Suwannee River to the west bank of the Ichetucknee. Along the way, numerous benches and small covered pavilions beneath a dense tree canopy provide plenty of shady rest stops.
Both trailheadsat Ivey Memorial Park and in Branfordlie in a bend along the western half of the trail. Ivey has the only public restroom and water fountain, so you may want to start your trip here. Consider a visit to Branford's restaurants, convenience stores and gas stations before hitting the trail.
North of town the trail parallels US Highway 129 for about 2.5 miles before it ends. If you continue west just over 1 mile along lightly traveled CR 248, you'll reach Little River Springs State Park. Cool off with a dip in the springs at this slice of old Florida on the Suwannee.
Heading back toward Branford along the trail, you'll pass the trailheads before reaching a gopher turtle preserve at the trail midpoint. Be on the lookout for a gopher turtle or two, as well as other small trail critters.
The eastern half is a bit rough, particularly where it parallels the road and rails; there's less debris on the portions built directly atop the abandoned line.
By the time you reach trail's end, you may be ready for a relaxing tube ride down the meandering Ichetucknee. Also worth a visit is Ichetucknee Springs State Park, a short drive away.
On the other side of the Ichetucknee you pick up the Ichetucknee to O'Leno Trail
To reach the Branford trailhead, take US Highway 27 north to US Highway 129, turn north then take the first left on Trail Street/Owens Avenue. Parking is at road's end.
Ivey Memorial Park is on the other side of US Highway 27, just east of the Suwannee River. For more information, contact:
Suwannee County Recreation Department
1201 Silas Drive
Live Oak, FL 32064
This trail is now paved for approximately 25 miles, from Branford to Olena State Park (High Springs). The cool thing is that it connects several parks. The north leg of the trail from Branford will take you to Little River Springs
and Park its really ...
I rode this trail on October 15, 2009. I started the day on the Nature Coast Trail in Fanning Springs, rode to Cross City on that trail, and travelled 29 miles on routes 351, 349, and US 27 to Branford. I first rode the 2.5 mile north leg. The first 1.5 ...
"This trail is now paved for approximately 25 miles, from Branford to Olena State Park (High Springs). The cool thing is that it connects several parks. We cycled today from Olena State Park to Ichetucknee Springs State Park (15 miles each way). The not-so-cool ...