From December 9 until further notice, the Barr Street trailhead and West Camp will be closed for maintenance and improvements.
Little Big Econ State Forest’s name comes from combining the names of the Little Econlockhatchee River and the larger Econlockhatchee River which flow through the property. The forest’s most notable feature is the narrow, winding Econlockhatchee River which is designated as an Outstanding Florida Water (OFW) and singled out for preservation.
The area that makes up and surrounds Little Big Econ State Forest supports a wide variety of wildlife and provides a roaming corridor which connects the southern part of the Econ Basin to the Tosohatchee State Preserve and other public lands along the St. Johns River for approximately 100 miles. The numerous species of wildlife found in this corridor include: gray fox, river otter, white-tailed deer, wild turkey, bobcat, resident and migratory waterfowl, wood storks, wading birds, shorebirds and numerous upland species. Other common sightings include: sandhill cranes, roseate spoonbills, bald eagles, ospreys, and hawks.
Little Big Econ State Forest is historically significant since it contains the first means of crossing the Econlockhatchee River. The Old SR 13 railway and trestle was part of the Flagler Railroad System in the early 1900’s and today is part of the Florida National Scenic Trail and is used by hikers to cross the Econlockhatchee River.
Little Big Econ State Forest has an abundance of recreation opportunities. Canoeing along the Econ is a favorite pastime with many visitors, improved canoe launch areas have been established along the river. Three trailhead parking areas have been established for hiking, horseback and mountain bike riding, with 1 hiking trail (Kolokee) in the Florida Division of Forestry’s Trailwalker and Trailtrotter Programs.
Other activities include fishing, bird-watching, picnicking and nature study. Primitive camping for canoeists is available with a special-use permit which can be obtained from the Little Big Econ State Forest office.
The forest is managed as a Wildlife Management Area in cooperation with the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Fishing is permitted in all waterways of the forest unless otherwise posted. Hunting is permitted on the Kilbee Tract only. Non-hunting recreationists are encouraged to check the Wildlife Management Area regulations and season dates before visiting the Kilbee Tract. Visit MyFWC.com/Recreation for information.
In keeping with its mission to protect and manage Florida’s forest resources, the Division of Forestry has developed rules which apply to all State Forest visitors.