Micanopy Cycling

Lochloosa Conservation Area Route

The River Styx

Across the River Styx

This trip is a 5-mile straight shot along County Road 346 towards Cross Creek. CR 346 is not really my favorite road. Once you cross 441, the road is paved all the way to the Lochloosa and it’s relatively flat, both of which make riding easier as well as more boring. Also, CR 436 has more traffic than I would like and the cars are typically traveling 50 mph or more. Being able to say that you crossed the River Styx is cool though. Also, going to Lochloosa is particularly cool for a fan of Mofro (a band, they’re awesome, go see them live). Not to mention that if you keep taking 346 until it dead ends into CR 325 and turn right, you will arrive at Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings home at Cross Creek! So this route definitely has things going for it, they just don’t really have anything to do with the actual biking.

Route Highlights
Micanopy Native American Heritage Preserve

The preserve is pretty much just a couple of paths meandering through the woods, but it’s still nice. Quite a bit of progress has been made in the last couple of months, including the clearing of more paths and steps towards the opening of the little museum.

River Styx

This River Styx may not have a mythical boatman but it does flow down Orange Lake and past Cross Creek, which is as close to a mythical place as any around these parts.

Lochloosa Wildlife Conservation Area

The Lochloosa Conservation Area is a different landscape, certainly not what I typically picture when I think of Florida. There are lots of tall grasses and spare reedy plants. The place seems to be imbued with shades of brown and yellow. The paths are wide and occasionally hilly. The actual terrain can be a bit tricky, as the first path is made of fist sized rocks which give way to paths that are half grass and half loose sand. The land itself aside, there certainly is plenty of wildlife to see, particularly birds.

Route Directions
1. Take Hunter Ave East for 0.8 miles to US-441.

Hunter Avenue is the dirt road running right past the Old Florida Café downtown. You’ll pass the back entrance to the Micanopy Native American Heritage Preserve on the right just before you get to 441.

2. Continue straight across 441 onto Co Rd 346. Go straight for 4.1 miles.

This long stretch of paved road is relatively uneventful to be honest. There’s not that much shade on the way and there isn’t a paved shoulder. However, traffic is very light so cars typically just move all the way over into the other lane. There are a couple of hills here and there and, of course, the sporadic livestock or horse ranch. The plot on the left as you cross 441 has alpacas (or llamas or something). Just around the bend from Co Rd 225 (the only other major road you will pass) is the River Styx, notable not only for its cool name but also its appearances in the writings of acclaimed local novelist Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings. The Lochloosa Wildlife Conservation Area is about three-quarters of a mile past the river on the right.

One Way: 4.9 miles
Round Trip: 9.8 miles
Travel Time: 25-30 minutes one way

Tuscawilla Route
Southeast Micanopy Route
Evinston Route
Shiloh Route
Wacahoota Route
Paynes Prairie Route
Eco-Passage Route
Rochelle Route

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