Bradwell Bay Wilderness

Area Status: Open
This area is Open
 

A swamp thick with titi trees, distinguished by their leathery leaves and fragrant white flowers, dominates the second largest Wilderness in Florida. Here, you'll also find a swampland of hardwoods or pine-titi mixtures and small ponds that are either open or covered with aquatic plants.

The climate is subtropical, and rainfall averages 55 inches per year. Summers are hot and sticky with humidity, but temperatures have been known to drop into the teens come winter. Bradwell Bay's low areas are generally submerged beneath one to four inches of standing water. The water table lies close to, if not above, ground surface over most of this flat Wilderness. Drier islands of longleaf pine and wire grass border parts of the swamp. White-tailed deer, black bears, and alligators top the food chain.

With sufficient rainfall, canoeists can run the Sopchoppy River, which defines the eastern edge of the area. Hikers can follow old logging roadbeds or take the east-west Florida National Scenic Trail through Bradwell Bay. Truth is, however, that hikers who opt to use the well-marked trail typically end up wading through sections of waist-deep water.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Contact theĀ Wakulla Ranger District.
Operational Hours: 24 hours
Area Amenities: Parking
Fees No fee charged.
Permit Info: No backpacking permits are required.
Usage: Light
Restrictions:
  • Motorized vehicles are not permitted.
  • Visitors must pack out any waste.
  • Follow Leave No Trace principles: pack it in, pack it out; do not disturb wildlife; leave what you find; camp and travel on durable surfaces; minimize use and impact of campfires; and be sure to let someone know where you’re going.
Checking in at a district office is a good idea, to inform someone of your travel plans and get the latest info on weather conditions. The staff can also inform you about any campfire ban in effect during times of high fire danger.
Closest Towns: Sopchoppy, FL (9 miles)
Water: Non-potable from streams and ponds
Restroom: None
Operated By: US Forest Service

General Information

General Notes:

Bradwell Bay is a Class I Area as set forth in the Clean Air Act. This means we have a responsibility to protect air quality related values within the area, and to consider whether new emissions from proposed major facilties will have an adverse impact on those values. To learn more, please visit the Southern Research Station's Air Resource Management page.


Directions:

From Sopchoppy: At the intersection of Crawdfordville Highway (US319) and Rose Street in Sopchoppy, keep right on Rose Street for 0.1 mile. Turn right onto Railroad Avenue. After about 1.3 miles, the name of the road will change to Oak Park Road. Continue on this road for another 5 miles, then turn left onto Forest Road 349. After another 2 miles, turn left onto Forest Road 348. Take the first left (about 0.6 miles) onto Forest Road 329. The Florida Trail trailhead will be on your left.

Topo Maps

Download free U.S. Forest Service Topo maps.

Buy maps online

Go to the National Forest Store.

Wilderness.net

Go to Wilderness.net for online maps and other important Wilderness information.


Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Activities


Camping & Cabins

Show detail SHOW

Hiking

Show detail SHOW

Nature Viewing

Show detail SHOW

Water Activities

Show detail SHOW

Amenities

Parking Limited parking at Florida Trail trailhead