Familiarize yourself.
Everglades Edge is a Human Powered Eco-Tour business located within Picayune Strand State forest, offering pre-race guided course rides (free) the following dates and times.

Saturday Apr. 9, 2016 - 9:30 am  Lap 1

Sunday Apr. 17, 2016 - 2 pm  Lap 2

Meet at Everglades Edge on Snake Rd 1/2 hr. prior for Sat  2/20 ride.

Meet at Trailwalker Trailhead 1/2 hr. prior for Sunday 2/28 tour.

Please call Wes at least 1 day ahead at 239 280-8837 or 239 353-1648 to sign up and talk about details. Also please call anytime for directions and specifics and any general questions you may have anytime.  e-mails inquiries contact- wrwa@att.net

Also come out on your own and practice as the course is there to use at your liesure everyday. We will assist in any way we can. - Wes W.    239 280-8837.


*All profits are donated 100%.  Picayune Nature Club (picayunenatureclub.org) will administer all costs and give all profits and volunteer efforts to programs for the benefit of Picayune Strand State Forest and outdoor conservation practices and how they interact restoratively in the Southwest Florida urban and natural environments of which Picayune Strand State Forest is an integral part of. The PNC is a 501.3.c corporation and not politically involved.
The "Durrwalker" cup is a tribute in the local vernacular to a person who was an important part of the original makers of Picayune Strand State Forest. Forestor Durrwachter played several major roles on the ground for the Forest Service during that time and a main part of the mapping and naming of trails and boundaries while working through the difficult details and politics of the land acquisition phase required for eventual preservation and the restoration of Picayune Strand.
Senior Forester Sonja Durrwachter was her official title, and one most appropriate for a true forester opening the door to the future for the newly defined state forest. The petite blonde had her work cut out for her, often in the field alone, courageously working in a place plagued by raging fires and deemed by many as the last frontier. Poachers, dumpers, hunters, squatters, suspicious residents, fugitives and recreationists of all kinds knew Sonja and her tireless work in getting Picayune Forest off the ground and making it an equal among giants of special places managed by the State of Florida.
It's people like her and many others in the Florida Forest Service that make the world a better place, especially for the future.
       Logo rider-                         "Skillet" .          
         From:  Race Director - Wes Wilkins

   The trails of Picayune are not drying down. Alot of unseasonable rain. Standing muddy water is still around, too high to ride around other than the northeast part of the course. There are big puddles that are still part of a lake of sheet flow to the east side and south part of the Belle Meade. Not a bad thing but we figured it was time to delay the race date until April,23. The birds are numerous as they fly in from all over to feed on the not-so-much diminshing pools of fish. Wood storks, herons, egrets, everything you can name is out in the woods of Picayune Strand.  The water table has not dropped as much as usual  and humidity is up and rainfall has been at least double the norm the last couple of months. Mornings still begin often with some foggy overcast here and there often and fog but generally clears for some afternoon sunshine. There have been several fronts of heavy rain that don't allow for much to dry yet this dry season. Cooler temps have arrived but the moist conditions remain.  The trail sand is packed where not inundated and still very sticky at other spots and the plants thick and full and there's still alot of grass and weeds on the trail. Definitely backwoods riding. Good riding and unique. But it's wide open as we begin to ride on the trail course a little and mark. Which means we do nothing much at all other than make a wheel way in the natural landscape. Little impact and gone after a wet season. It's an old time freeride in a generally dry Florida swamp and many trails have been there many decades . This year  it's been wet and wild and now January is basically like December. Majority of water remains to the south side and the dry spots are to the north, which is typical since the water flows south/southeast to the Gulf.
   Every year  one can expect the trails to go dormant in late summer/early fall due to the flooding of sheet flow water. This is good for stabilizing and smoothing out the land and allowing the plants to take over. It occurs  most every season and that's good as this region is within the Big Cypress water basin which is essentially a rain driven system and therefore very seasonal and subject to extreme drought as well as high water. Best time to ride here is in May, June and July and soon after the rains around late October, November, December and often beyond, but who knows when the deep water will actually begin and end and how much will accumulate in August and September and just how hot and dry and worked up the roads and trails become.
   The riding at this time (January 26, 2016) is damp but easy going and fast many spots. Be prepared for wet feet in the south and lube your bike well for wet conditions. But there's many places to ride in higher locations where there's no water at all or it can be easily avoided. See the maps or just come and discover for yourself. The correct tires and gearing become another point to adjust and the riding can be a good as ever, nobody around hardly, lots of birds, plants thick, bugs not so bad...
   At this time the once very deep but now partially receded water from a fairly wet summer have left trails renewed. It's always exciting to go out just after wet times to experience the peaked summer plant growth. Picayune's swamp flora has grown in with a vengence but a bike can slip discreetly between and through all of it- but that will change as the winter season progresses and things go totally brown and whither back for the dry season when we've always had the TdP so far.
   After the rainy season the ground remains a sponge well after the water subsides and makes for some interesting combinations of sand consistency. Watch out for suction in low spots. Wide softer tires don't push the sand but ride above. Letting out alot of air is quite helpful. Narrower harder tires can sink in ruts and lose control especially as the dry season progresses and everything changes into barren and sandy stretches that require the right tires, acceleration and momentum to efficiently traverse. Knobby tires can slow and create a glue like traction espeically in wetter sand. Knobs on a rear wheel is great for traction, especially in those mushy, underwater holes. But can be a significant trade off at areas described as suction sand..

                    Check back for updates! - Wes

 28 and 50 mile (2 laps - 28 &22 miles) marked woodland trails.
Route may change anytime due to Forestry preferences, construction and other factors unknown, so trail layout can change. Stay tuned.
4 Aid stations. Drinks and snacks provided during and after race. Camping is available. Bike rentals available.  See sponsor links for other available amenities. See also separate 16mile backroad tour  map attached via this link.




On soft sand, the wider the tire the easier the roll  with a lightweight bike. Thinner tires need more speed to plane and often cut deep ruts through the surface, thus basically becoming a plow . A power consumer. The object is a balance between terraine and tire. Larger around tires are better for general ground clearance such as a 29er's better ability to cross rough country. Less psi but enough rear tire traction to keep going is also a key to this balance.  Fatter tires work in other ways in terms of traction and comfort. A tire with a flatter ground to surface profile is better, too. What's best on pavement is most likely bad in the dirt. Air pressure is important not to have too much. A softer tire adapts to the surface and it's significant. Each sand condition varies so it's best to start high and work it out lower to a comfortable level as the ride continues. The sand can vary like the weather and other traffic has its effects as well.
  Riding ruts has advantages and puffy sand would seem the worst but with a morning
 dew, it is a great surface to ride with the right settings.
 Don't come with a pavement mindset and you'll love it just fine.
 Watch for wildlife at all times and yield, as this is their home above all.

          Happy Pippy says everyone is welcome
                     to come for the fun!







                        2014 & 2015
         Champion Bill Quinsey

Bill Quinsey held true to his intention of last year and has become our first back to back champion.
There's no sense in asking him about this year as I know he is humbly intending a third victory. And why shouldn't he? He is definitely the man to beat and if anybody really expects to challenge him, then they better put in plenty of additional riding time here in Picayune Strand Forest.
But as sure as Bill will be very tough to beat, he will have to do even better this time to win a third.
Last year's race had perfect weather. A stong rain and cold front moved in the night before and flattened the course and cooled the air. Everything drained perfectly in the dry sand and the start was fast in the dirt but the grass was thick and heavy in the early going. But the sun and low humidity did it's thing in the afternoon and things dried out including the sand around midday which went powder dry. Too tough for a second round for many as the ground became the enemy, and in the Southwest part of the course, this meant seriously tough consequences. It became a two man race as Bill Q. and Andy Holland pulled away from the other riders, about 3/4 through the first lap. Jareld Brownell and Pieter Van Dien held their respective 3rd and 4th spots throughout too. Jareld captured third on his own and Pietr placed 4th his second year in a row, also coming in solo. Andy, Jareld, Pieter and others fought a hard and consistent battle from start to finish, but Bill prevailed over his chief competitor Andy Holland as he took control late on the second lapabout 6 or 7 miles out in the painfully deep ruts of the "Sand Traps" region and separated himself enough to win by about a couple minutes or so. Andy was second followed by a relativley distant 3rd and fourth.

        2015 Finish Line at Snake Pit:
 Left to Rt:  Andy Holland, Bill Quinsey,          and Jareld Brownell.

                   Rough freeriding trails and paths.

                   Meandering single track through palmettos.

                         Typical log obstacle.

                    Grassy and sandy flatwoods trails.

                                  Sticky tram.                                                                                 Trail through oak hammock.

               Jungle path to Snake pit.                                                                                              Sabal Palm/Triple G road rock pits.

                        Snake Pit Camp.                                                                                               Rutty road late in the dry season day.

            Oberlin Expressway returns.                                                                                Wetland Hammock enter at own risk.

                          This road is usually fast but can be sticky and slick both whenever it rains,
                           and sideways slipping can be expected.