Silver Lake Recreation Area Brooksville Florida

Kiki and I in front of Silver Lake in Brooksville Florida after a 90 minute trek through scenic green woods - self-portraitVenturing far inland, Kiki and I went to Silver Lake Recreation Area in Brooksville, Florida seeking new trails and a deeper forest experience.  There were positives and negatives about this area of the Withlacoochee State Forest, but enough of the former so that I can recommend trekking there along the Low Water and High Water trails.

Silver Lake Brooksville Florida panorama - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/11 ISO 200 1/60th 3-shot panoramaUpon arriving at the area and paying the $2 entrance fee, the road funnels you right to Silver Lake.  There were almost no people around.  Dogs are allowed in all the day use areas, leashed of course, and even far out on the trail I kept Kiki leashed as well as sometimes an actual road would appear right in the middle of the forest with cars flying by.  

Amazing cypress tree grown into a natural arch in Withlacoochee State Forest on the Low Water Trail near Silver Lake - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 400 1/60thThe best find during our 90-minute 3.55 mile trek was this cypress tree.  It was enormous and its based formed a natural arch.  We stopped at the foot of this towering tree for water and a snack.

The view from the other side of the cypress tree looks other worldly - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 400 1/80thThe view from the back of the cypress tree offers an otherwordly look into the forest itself.  I did not dare pass through the arch for fear of coming out into another dimension.  Kiki showed no desire to pass through it either.

Cypress knees floating on greens in Withlacoochee State Forest Brooksville Florida - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 400 1/60thSoft green grass grew throughout the forest floor providing an ethereal feel.  The beginning of the High Water trail is too close to I-75 with far too much noise pollution to help one lose thoughts of the human created world, however, once out on the Low Water trail, one could feel the age of the Withlacoochee Forest

Kiki is a very good outdoors-dog at home on the trails and in the forests - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 400 1/60thFinding out about these trails and how to get to them took some doing.  There is no good website to point you too (this one was a starting point at least), just basically search for Silver Lake Road in Brooksville Florida and Google Maps points you almost exactly at the park entrance.  From I-75 take exit #301, then make for Silver Lake Road.  

Brooksville Rock Processing Haikyo

the view from the back

While in the west-central Florida countryside town of Brooksville looking for trails to hike on in the Withlacoochee State Forest, I had an eye open for any possible haikyo in the area.  On the way into the state forest proper we (me, Aya & Kiki) had driven right past the above haikyo because my eyes were searching more for trail heads rather than teetering silos.  Even on the way back this one was hard to see from the road as the front was largely blocked by trees.  Once past that obstacle, however, there was a curving, and thus hidden, driveway to park on and an open door right inside!

I will definitely go back to this haikyo for a follow-up as I only had my 50mm and 105mm lenses with me and Aya and Kiki waiting patiently outside.

maybe a hurricane knocked this structure down?

the ladder on the silo may be in good enough condition to climb still

not much was left inside

I swear I head someone playing an arcade game from up on this structure

I didn't even take any time to play with these controls