Description - The Tallahassee-St. Marks Railroad was completed in 1837 connecting the territorial Capital with the Gulf port of St. Marks. Conceived and financed by leading agriculturists and merchants, the route was used for transporting cotton to coastal markets.
Copyright: Florida Division of Recreation & Parks
Tallahassee-St. Marks Historic Railroad State Trail
In 1984, the Florida Department of Transportation purchased 16 miles of the railroad bed. Today, management is at the helm of Florida State Parks. In-line skaters, bicyclists, hikers, and joggers enjoy the route. A parallel equestrian dirt path is offered to horseback riders.
- Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy this 16-mile north - south trail that parallels Route 363. Near the trailhead at the intersection of Routes 261 and 363, a concessionaire offers bike and in-line skate rental. Cold drinks, gear and trail maps are offered as well. Beyond the trailhead lie resting benches and restrooms. Shortly into the trail, the path travels through the town of Woodville, which is lined with homes, churches and small businesses.
At 1.25 miles into the route, the paved trail intersects with the Munson Hills Off-Road Bike Trail. Munson bike route offers a scenic and challenging ride through some of the most rolling terrain on the Apalachicola National Forest. The woodland route offers a remote traffic-free excursion due to a cooperative effort on behalf of the U.S. Forest Service and the Munson Hills Off-Road Bicycle Trail Association.
South of the junction with Munson Hills Off-Road Bike Trail, the Tallahassee-St. Marks route bypasses another small town where restrooms and drinking foundation may be found. These facilities are adjacent to the ball fields.
The trail ends nearby the confluence of St. Marks River and Wakulla River. A concessionaire at the terminus offers cold drinks and bike rental. Historians may wish to venture several blocks west to San Marcos De Apalache State Historic Site. In addition to offering lovely views of the two rivers, the site marks the spot where revolving defense occupation occurred from 1528 through 1865.
Recreation - Recreation activities include in-line skating, hiking, horseback riding, biking, and viewing wildlife.
Climate - Florida experiences mild, comfortable winters and warm to hot, humid summers. The area offers a great warm escape for outdoor recreation during the cold northern months. Summer temperatures average in the low 80's Fahrenheit and mid 20's Celsius. Winters are mild with temperatures averaging between the high 40's to the high 50's Fahrenheit. The average precipitation for the north central area is diverse. The central western area receives more than 60 inches per year while the central eastern tract receives about 50 inches. August and September are peak months of the hurricane season that lasts from June 1 through November 30.
The trail begins just south of Tallahassee at the junction of Routes 261 and 363. Parking available. Its terminus is located in the town of St. Marks near the confluence of Wakulla and St. Marks Rivers.