Gilchrist County High Point Trip Report

Date: March 4, 2000
Author: Fred Lobdell

There are, unfortunately, six areas in Gilchrist County that are enclosed by 120-foot contour lines. I did three of these and reconnoitered a fourth.

From the intersection of FL 26 with US rtes. 27 & 41 in Newberry, take FL 26 west 5 miles. (This point will be 2 miles west of the Alachua/Gilchrist county line.) Turn left (south) on the paved road and go just about 2 miles to a dirt track on the left (east), not shown on the topo. (If you get to Boat Pond, you've gone too far.) Ownership of this piece of woods is not known.

There is one posted sign on the chain blocking the dirt track, but I was told by the property owner to the south that he thought it had been placed there by a hunter who wanted exclusive use of the area for himself. The owner of the land is, according to the man to whom I spoke, an organization with a post office box in North Carolina, but he has not been able to get a response from them. He saw the North Carolina license plate on my car and thought I might be connected with them, but I had to disappoint him. He pointed out that it was possible to drive around the chain (which others had obviously done) and go "quite a ways" up that track, but I thought it best to leave my car by the county road and walk in.

Walk east on the dirt track for a bit more than a half mile, staying on the main track at forks. Take the second left and walk north on this track to a height of land, then bushwhack to your left (west) staying on the high ground as far as possible.

This should take you over both these high areas. When you begin descending and have no more high ground in front of you, bushwhack southwest to return to the original dirt track. (The map shows some swampy areas due west of the high areas.)

A third area is a mile northeast of the two areas above. Go north on the county road from where you parked and take the first good-quality dirt road on the right. (This does not show as a through road on the topo, but it is.) Go almost to the next intersection; the high area will be to your right (south). It is a plowed and planted field behind some houses, and I didn't investigate this one further.

A fourth area is easily accessed from FL 26. Turn left (north) at the intersection mentioned above and return to FL 26, intersecting the latter one mile west of the county line. Turn left (west) and go almost two miles to a height of land; a radio tower, not on the high ground, will be visible to your left front. Park and ascend the road cut on the south side of the highway. There are two fences here, an outer barbed-wire fence needing repair, and an inner new electric fence. The highest area seems to be between the two fences, which is good as I didn't see a good way to get inside the second fence.

The remaining two areas seem to be in a development about four miles north of FL 26, and the topo shows a house sitting in one of the high areas. I didn't investigate these areas.