Mountain Biking in Central Florida can be great. The problem is that most multi-use trails in the area are flat. If you are craving a park with lots of fun ups and downs, then Lake Louisa State Park, in Clermont, is worth a visit. While no one will mistake it for North Carolina, the hills throughout the park are a welcome addition to an already great series of trails.
What Makes It Great
Lake Louisa State Park offers 23 miles of trails, most of which are multi-use. The 23 miles are broken up into 9 trails which range in distance from the .5 mile Dude’s Loop to the 5.5 mile Bronson Loop. Since the trails are multi-use you can feel free to bike them. Be sure to keep an eye out for hikers and people on horseback.The trails themselves are mostly sand and grass. You should not have to contend with roots or rocks for most of your ride. During the summer months the trails can dry out, so be prepared for deep sand in some areas.
The trails in Lake Louisa State Park intersect each other to create an almost endless amount of trail options. You are able to adjust the length of your ride based on how much time you have and which areas of the park you want to see. Depending on which trail you select, you will go by different lakes. There are a total of 13 lakes in the chain, with Lake Louisa being the largest, making for some pleasant scenery along your ride.
Due to most of the trails being multi-use you will encounter less shade than in other areas. Because of this lack of shade heat can be an issue. Remember to check the weather before heading out and bring plenty of water.
Who is Going to Love It
Anyone looking for a combination of long trails and hills will love Lake Louisa State Park. The hills in the area make the trails that much more challenging and will leave your legs burning at the end of your ride.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
When you first arrive at the park you will have the option of parking next to the Ranger station and beginning your ride from there. The first trail you will encounter is the Nature Trail which is next to Lake Louisa. From there you can continue south to the other trails.If you would like to start your ride from further into the park, there are two other parking areas for you to use. One near Lake Louisa and the other near Dixie Lake. Keep in mind that this is a state park so you will need to pay an entrance fee when you arrive.
Water fountains can be found throughout the park at most restroom areas.