Prescribed Burn Notice
Today, November 17th, 2022 the South Florida Water Management District plans to conduct a 19-acre prescribed burn in the Lake Marion Creek Management Area located in Polk County. The burn site is at the Horse Creek Trailhead, located at the intersection of Horseshoe Creek Rd and Huckleberry Rd, approximately two miles east of Davenport. Smoke may be visible in the area.
Whether you want to hike a hilly, scrubby area or a flatter but very diverse pine flatwoods, this area has something for everyone! A few inches change in elevation results in a myriad of habitat types: sand hills, pine flatwoods and riverine swamp forests weave a rich tapestry to support an array of wildlife at Lake Marion Creek.
At the Baltic Road unit, you can treat yourself to a slightly aerobic hike in the sugar sand hills where the rare and inquisitive scrub jay will want to make your acquaintance. Here you will find numerous cone-shaped doodle bug depressions, and you might glimpse a rare sand skink. Reward yourself in the shady, lower elevations of fern-carpeted hammocks.
At the flatter Huckleberry Island unit, the three-mile, one-way trail and related firm, grassed fire breaks are among the most popular for hiking and bicycling in Lake Marion Creek. Hardy souls are welcomed to hike two miles for primitive camping. Picnic tables there will help you feel at home. On the way in, areas of open flatwoods and shady swamps alternate to provide a good balance between sun and shade. You will marvel at the lanky, 50- to 60-foot cabbage palms that tower over the swamp hammock canopy. Regular prescribed burns yield numerous meadows of yellow and pink wildflowers in the spring. Bring insect repellant for deer flies during the warm spring and summer months.
Activities by Site
- Lake Marion Creek: camping (tent), fishing, frogging, hiking
- Baltic Road: hiking, wildflower viewing
- Huckleberry Island: camping (tent), hiking, kayaking, picnicking, wildflower viewing
- Horse Creek: hiking, picnicking
- Snell Creek: hiking, wildflower viewing
Parking and trail access at all six public entry points.
- Three access points along C.R. 580 approximately three miles west of Poinciana at:
- Huckleberry Island Road
- Two points at Snell Creek on the north and south sides of C.R. 580 (one-half mile west of Huckleberry Island access point)
- To access these three points from Haines City: From U.S. 27, take the exit for 17/92 North/East, turn right onto Johnson Avenue which becomes C.R. 580, and travel approximately five miles. From Kissimmee, take U.S. 17/92, Orange Blossom Trail/John Young Parkway south, and turn left onto Pleasant Hill Road. Travel approximately 15 miles. Pleasant Hill Road becomes Cypress Parkway and then C.R. 580.
- Lake Marion Creek Road access point, off C.R. 580, approximately five miles west of Poinciana: Follow the directions above from Haines City, except travel approximately four miles on C.R. 580 coming from Haines City and travel approximately 16 miles on C.R. 580 when traveling from Kissimmee.
- Horse Creek Road off U.S. 17/92 in Davenport: From U.S. 27, exit in Haines City onto U.S. 17/92 North/East, travel approximately five miles and turn right onto Horse Creek Road. Head east 2.5 miles. The road takes a 90-degree turn to the left. The entrance is at the bend on the right.
- Baltic Road off Caspian Road: From Kissimmee, take U.S. 17/92, Orange Blossom Trail/John Young Parkway south and turn left onto Pleasant Hill Road. Travel approximately nine miles, then turn left onto Marigold. Go approximately three miles. The road takes a 90-degree turn to the right and becomes Poinciana Parkway. Travel approximately three miles to Lake Marion Creek Drive and turn right. Travel about three miles, then turn right onto Caspian Road. Travel about one-half mile, then turn left onto Baltic Road. The access point is straight ahead at the end of Baltic Road.