Florida

Wakulla County

Mounds Pool Interpretive Trail

St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge

St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge is one of the oldest refuges in the National Wildlife Refuge System. It encompasses 68,000 acres spread out between Wakulla, Jefferson, and Taylor counties along the Gulf Coast of northwest Florida. The refuge includes coastal marshes, islands, tidal creeks and estuaries of seven north Florida rivers, and is home to a diverse community of plant and animal life. The refuge also has strong ties to a rich cultural past, and is home to the St. Marks Lighthouse, which was built in 1832 and is still in use today. Established in 1931, the Refuge was formerly called "St. Marks Migratory Bird Refuge," and back then its primary focus was providing habitat for the thousands of migrating ducks and geese that wintered here. Today, the refuge's priorities are protection and enhancement of habitat for: (1) endangered species; (2) migratory birds, and (3) the refuge's year round resident wildlife. The fourth priority for St. Marks NWR is to provide quality outdoor education and recreation opportunities for its visitors. Among the many recreational opportunities are numerous hiking trails. Hiking the refuge is most pleasant during the fall, winter and early spring. The mile long Mounds Pool Interpretive Trail, located about 5 miles south of the visitor center, encircles Tower Pond. The pond hosts wintering waterfowl, and the marsh vegetation along its edges supports a wide variety of nesting species later in the year. The Mounds Pool Overlook provides an excellent vantage for viewing both the salt marsh and Tower Pond. Bald Eagles are often seen here. Only foot- and bicycle-traffic are allowed on trails. Only foot- and bicycle-traffic are allowed on trails

Length: 1.0 miles

Difficulty: 1

Location: 30.151727, -84.147628

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