Black Bear Wilderness Area

5298 Michigan Avenue

Sanford, FL

Phone: 407-665-2211

Fax: 407-665-2215

Hours of Operation: Open Dawn to Dusk

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Recreation Opportunities

hiking Pets Allowed on Leash Wildlife Viewing

Black Bear Cub Trail Florida Black Bear Paw Print


The Wilderness Area is currently OPEN, as of March 5, 2022 following the construction work in the parking lot. Parking area gate will be closed at sunset and re-open at sunrise.

Please make sure you are out prior to sunset or you may be locked in.

Similar to state parks, once the parking area is at capacity, no other vehicles will be permitted. Parking in the right of way is prohibited. Please be patient. To find other Seminole County hiking trails, visit

Before you hit the trails this weekend, you’re asked to remember the following practices:

  • Do not use parks or trails if you are exhibiting symptoms

  • Follow the CDC’s guidance on personal hygiene prior to visiting parks or trails 

  • Share the trail: warn other trail users of your presence as you pass and step aside to let others pass

  • Observe the CDC’s minimum recommended social distancing of 6 feet from other persons at all times


This site’s approximately 1600 acres in northwest Seminole County features a variety of wetland habitats within the floodplain of the St Johns River. Wet Prairie, Hydric Hammock and Cypress Swamps form a mosaic of habitat diversity which host wildlife such as the White-tailed deer, Swallow-tailed Kite and the Florida Black Bear. Its’ large size and proximity to other public lands, make this site an important piece in a puzzle connecting natural areas between the Wekiva / St. John’s basins and the Ocala National Forest.


The trail system at BBWA is established on historic levees and stays dry most of the year. This site is however, located within the floodplain of the St. Johns River and may experience significant flooding during the rainy season. From the parking area follow the blue blazes on an approximate 7.1 mile loop trail along the St. Johns River. Several boardwalks provide passage over wet areas and if you’re quiet you may be fortunate enough to observe species such as River Otter, American Alligator and maybe even a Black Bear. This is a remote trail over rough, uneven terrain, where emergency access is very limited. You will encounter slopes, tree roots and holes (animal burrows) so we recommend you wear appropriate hiking shoes, bring water, a hat and bug spray. WATCH YOUR STEP!



Other Nearby Conservation Lands

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