Gainesville-Hawthorne State Park Trail

Numerous benches and seating areas along a bike trail can only mean one thing: I’ll need to stop to rest along the way!

The wide, smooth Gainesville-Hawthorne State Park Trail connecting Boulware Springs Park in Gainesville to Lochloosa required too many shifts to first or second gear so I could navigate the hills on the path. I know, it’s Florida. The hills can’t be that tough. Well, they provided more than enough challenge for me.

Since we arrived in Gainesville at 6:00, we didn’t attempt the complete 16.5 mile trail, but instead started at La Chua and then rode east through a portion of Payne’s Prairie Preserve stopping at several of the overlooks. Our ten mile round trip ride was sufficient.

We saw deer, armadillo, and rabbits, a bonus of riding near sunset. A quick detour down the LaChua Trail would have surely resulted in the appearance of alligator and maybe even bison.

Next time we’ll have to start in Hawthorne to insure we ride the remainder of the trail. Hoping for fewer shifts to those low gears.

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