Torreya State Park
Five star scale rating
Scenery – ****
Campground – ****
Campsite – ***
Recreation – ***
Torreya State Park is named after the Torreya tree, an endangered pine species. Only 200 are remaining, some of which you can find, barely holding onto life, roped off at the park. However, most people don’t come to Torreya State Park for the Torreya trees, they come to hike. Being at the highest elevation in the state at 300 feet, you feel like you are in NC at times while hiking the trail. A mixture of Oak, Pine, and Cyprus trees fill the forest. Total amount of trail mileage is about 14 miles. The hike is pretty challenging with all the ups and downs all the while scanning the land for copperheads. We were forewarned about the prevalence of the high land moccasins. Considering we saw two dead and one alive, I also recommend keeping a constant vigilance for them. After all, we are in their house. Don’t fret, the bite is poisonous but won’t kill you or your dog. In fact the ranger told us his cat has survived being bitten twice!
The campground itself if one of the most quiet and serene I’ve visited. Originally built and maintained by the CCC, the park has a rustic feel to it with an awing overlook of the Apalachicola River. There are 18 campsites with water and electric hookups for $17.20/night. The sites are narrow but there is a thin section of trees dividing the sites, providing a little privacy. Tim’s first time backing up the RV was successful, twice… Since the camp host gave Tim the wrong spot the first time he had to do it twice. If rving isn’t your thing and you don’t have a tent then try to get a reservation for the Yurt! It looked really cool but unfortunately we didn’t get to see the inside. I highly recommend bringing mosquito repellent and tick repellent for hiking. Also make sure you bring all the food and supplies you need as the nearest store is twenty minutes away. The only other thing to do at Torreya State Park is touring the Gregory house, a colonial mansion. The tours are daily at 10 am EST for $3.
Time flies when you are Torreya State Park, literally. Don’t rely on your cellular device for accurate time. Because the park is located close to the division of the EST and CST zones, the hour will switch back and forth depending on where you are standing.