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Guana River National Wildlife Preserve

Average Rating:    (2.87 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 15

The Real Florida. Great cross section of beach, woods, marsh, etc.

From the North: Go south on A1A from Ponte Vedra Beach. Entrance to the park is at MAIN entrance to park (not beach area)-- right before the Gate gas station. From the South: Go north on A1A after crossing the Vilano Bridge for approx. 8 miles. Address: 2690 South Ponte Vedra Boulevard, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL‎ - Tel. (904) 825-5071 ‎Pay entrance fee (have $1 bills available as you pay by an honor system) Drive straight until you hit the last parking lot on the other side of dam. Trail head is there, and maps are usually available at the trail head.

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Latitude
30.02332706365836
Longitude
-81.32672309875488
Trail Directions
Go south on A1A from Ponte Vedra. Entrance to park is at MAIN entrance to park (not beach area). Pay entrance fee. GET MAP OF TRAILS. Park on other side of dam. Trail head is there.
Trail Length
3-10 miles
Trail Level
Intermediate
Trail Type
Singletrack & Fire Roads
City/County
South-Ponte-Vedra
   


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Reviews 1 - 5 (15 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

Review Date
December 30, 2013

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 4 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

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Reviewed by: tim-ay ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
Having recently moved to the Jax area, I was a little bummed about the thought of Santos being 2 hours away. I spent ten years in Colorado racing road bikes and riding mountain bikes, so I can be a little particular about riding routes. Road riding just doesn't do it for me anymore as its a great way to die at the hands of an oblivious texting douche.

Anyway, what a gem to find the Guana river trail system 3 miles from my house. There are enough trails in here to get a great ride in. Of course it is not technical, but you can drill it as hard as you want to with no worries of hikers, unless you enter into the state park. Its equally great to take the family and just make it a fun cruise. Keeps the legs in shape for day trips to Santos or Croom. Love this place!

Dont understand the aerobic rating. Sure, you won't spend an hour on a climb, but you can get your pulse rate at 90% of threshold and hold it ..... on any bike, anywhere..... that's up to you bro'.

Recommended Route:
I way prefer to enter at the Roscoe entrance and ride from there. I just ride from my house. I think this is better for people driving into the area also as you don't have to pay an entrance fee and there is less foot traffic.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Hannah, Santos, Croom, Withlacoochie trail (road riding)



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Review Date
March 13, 2013

Overall Rating
 3 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 1 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 1 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Borobiker ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
We really enjoyed this trail. Very easy. Not your usual MB trail. We took some very beginners and it was an easy ride except for an occasional deep sandy area. Try it if you are in the area.



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Review Date
February 19, 2010

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 5 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

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Reviewed by: debbiet ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
There are 8.5 miles of beautiful non-technical riding in this park. About half of it is double track, and although not technical, be ready to ride over rocks, roots, through some mud, sugar sand and water. Another review claims that you should leave your mtb at home and bring a beach cruiser.I disagree-most people would never get over the roots and through the sugar sand with a regular bike on these trails.As the months get warmer, the sand becomes more difficult to pedal through (although it's not throughout the trail).There is also a mile or two of nice single track and two of the trails bring you through over long bridges through the marsh (very pretty). The trails are well maintained and bring you through a beautiful coastal canopy where you will sometimes see deer, wild boar, armadillos and many species of birds. Evidence of wild boar are seen throughout the park as you can see where they were rooting for bugs or worms. A few weeks my husband saw a bob cat (which ran as fast as he/she could to get away from us).Two of the trails lead to picnic tables next to an Intracoastal Waterway beach where you can watch sailboats go by, stop for a rest, or have a picnic lunch.

This is a perfect trail for beginners.For those more experienced riders, you can ramp up the speed (if you want an aerobic workout) or take a less challenging ride and see the beautiful sights.

The trail head has maps and clean bathroom facilities.There is also a learning center at the entrance of the preserve.On the down-side, the trail is also used by hikers (you will pass less than 2 dozen people. Most are very polite and step aside.

After riding, pack up your bike and drive to the North parking lot(apx 5 miles north of the trail head)Walk over A1A to the overlook at the beach.People do bird watching from this observation deck, others look for dolphins and Right Whales. People often go to this off-beat beach to look for ancient shark's teeth (black in color).Weather permitting, it's a nice way to end a beautiful mtb ride-- even if it wasn't all that challenging:you've got to give beautiful, relaxing, and a chance to get some great exercise some points!Warning:if you do go to the north parking lot, make sure your car is locked and your bike is locked.It's not a high crime area, but cars have been broken into and bikes have been snatched.

Recommended Route:
There are six trails in the park- all are very nice.



Comments
Borobiker (03/29/2013)
Great review, you have done a good job describing the trail!
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Review Date
February 4, 2009

Overall Rating
 1 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 1 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 1 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

Visitors rate this review
5.00 of 5, 1.00 votes

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Reviewed by: kilcat ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
This is a sandy Florida country road that loops around the very flat marshy island. Perfect for tourists to stretch their legs for a leisure walk. Or anyone for that matter. It is covered by a canopy of shady trees of all types. Not for fun trailriding that evryone is used to. Two thumbs down and a frowny face for the avid adventurer thrill seeking biker. Leave your geared bike at home and bring your beach cruiser and bug spray for this one. LOL(laugh out loud) Still a great place for a camera dangling around your neck. Enjoy.

Recommended Route:
Pass it on by. Trust me.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
This place is in the middle of nowhere!



Comments
kilcat (03/25/2009)
i also recently scoped out the guana river state park wildlife management area on the north end of the preservation.many more miles to ride.lotsa horse hooves to contend with.my bike felt more like a jackhammer.still another scenic country road.not the typical narrow biking trail.would not recommend it to anyone for cycling
tim-ay (12/30/2013)
Depends on what you're looking for. Want to bust it hard, getting some miles on your legs, in a beautiful setting, without worry of douche drivers? This is the place! As for "horse hooves".... pfffftttt..... this is why they make mountain bikes with suspension. Try riding trails in Colorado with full time rocks. Spend the bucks, get a Trance :-)
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Review Date
January 17, 2004

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 2 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

Visitors rate this review
5.00 of 5, 2.00 votes

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Reviewed by: pryder ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
If you want to take a relaxing trail ride with plenty of scenery and wildlife, then this is a trail you will not want to miss. Yes, it is not technically difficult and not a particulary long ride, but it was certainly worth the 2 hour drive to get there. I rode in mid-January and had absolutely no problems with water or bugs...I can see both of these as BIG problems as the heat of summer approaches.

Recommended Route:
I took I-95 north to the St. Augustine exit...follow A1A north out of the city for approx 8 miles. Look for the state park sign opposite the beach.



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Reviews 1 - 5 (15 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

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