Bear Lake Trail Hike
A long walk if the access road isn't open
Bear Lake Trail HikeThe Bear Lake Trail, located 0.5-miles north of the Flamingo Visitor Center, is a 1.7-mile walk each way. Rich in both bird and plant life, the trail first passes through a dense hardwood hammock mixed with mangroves and 30 other different tree species, an excellent spot to see woodland birds.
On your right will be the Bear Lake Canal, which provides access to Bear Lake, your destination. At several points along the way, and especially near the end, the mangroves crowd the trail and form almost a thick canopy. The hike ends at a small marl beach on Bear Lake.
If you’re in luck, the trees will be filled with white egrets. And in the water? Alligators, what else? Then, it’s time to retrace your steps.
If the access road to the Bear Lake Trailhead is closed due to recent rains, you will need to start walking on the 1.8-mile entrance road to access the trailhead. If you start from the main road, the hike’s roundtrip distance is 7 miles (3-4 hours). If you can drive the road section to the trailhead, the roundtrip hike is only 3.5 miles, a walk of 2-3 hours.