Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge

Grass Trail

Named after wildlife photographer Allan Cruickshank, the Cruickshank trail offers exception views of Florida’s marshland.  For birders, this is one of the premier bird observation locations in the entire country.  Countless migratory bird species inhabit this area all year round.  To add some excitement, the American Alligator & Bob cats can also been spotted in this area.  Hiking on the trail is safe as long as it’s done in daylight (park closes at night) and your attentive to your surroundings.

The trail winds around the marshland and is dotted with palm tress.  Located near Kennedy Space Center, NASA buildings can be seen from the trail and if you timing is perfect, you could even witness a rocket launch!  An observation platform and a photography blind are located near the parking lot for those who prefer not to venture to far in.

Location: Near Titusville Florida.
GPS Trail Head Coordinates: 28.677406, -80.771554
Duration: 2-3 hours
Length: 5 mile loop
Season (video): Early winter
Weather Conditions (video): Sunny but cool Florida winter day
Trail (video): Alan Cruickshank Trail off of Blackpoint Wildlife Drive
State Park: Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge
Trails taken: Alan Cruickshank
Difficulty: Easy

Views: Kennedy Space Center buildings, bald eagles, osprey, killdeer, pelicans, pintail, roseate spoonbills, great egret, wood storks, white Ibis, blue-winged Teal, bobcat, american alligators, marshland, salt marsh, mud flat, refuge impoundment

Access: Take interstate 95 towards Titusville.  Take 406 East Exit and continue over bridge (aka Max Brewer Memorial Parkway).  Take a left onto Blackpoint Wildlife Drive, and continue till Stop 9 (park besides bathrooms).  $5 vehicle entry fee
Recommended Supplies: Bottle of water & Mosquito repellant
Safety Direction (if lost)Follow the shoreline in either direction back to Blackpoint Drive

 


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