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Jay B. Starkey Wilderness Park to Reopen May 20

By Florida's Original NatureCoaster™ Posted on May 19, 2017

County Park to reopen with limited access on trails

Jay B. Starkey Wilderness Park will reopen this Saturday, May 20, 2017, although sections of many trails still remain off limits. The park was closed for safety concerns and to provide access to firefighters dealing with the recent wildfire.

Here is the latest information from the Pasco Parks, Recreation, and Natural Resources Department:


  • The pavilions, shelters and playground at the day use area will be open.
  • The hiking trail will be open but a modified version. A portion of the hiking trail will be doubled as hiking and mountain bike trail.
  • The equestrian trail had no damage and the entire trail will be open.
  • The mountain bike trail has been modified since a majority of the trail went through the wildfire area.


  • The Suncoast Trail (runs alongside the Suncoast Parkway) will be open except the Starkey/Suncoast connector will remain closed. There currently is an electronic message board at the connector with some barricades to prevent visitors from entering through that entrance.
  • The tent and cabin area will be open for camping but the primitive camp sites will remain closed.


  • The seven mile paved bike trail that runs throughout the park will be closed including the gate at the entrance of the park.


  • The no open flame policy (campfires, grills/ barbeques, etc.) will remain in effect until further notice at the following Pasco County sites: Crews Lake Wilderness Park, John S. Burks Memorial Park, J Ben Harrill Recreation Complex, Lake Lisa Park, Moon Lake Park, Odessa Park, Sam W. Pasco Recreation Complex, Starkey Wilderness Park, Upper Pithlachascotee River Preserve and Withlacoochee River Park. The no open flames policy is rescinded at all other Pasco County parks.

“Pasco County—Florida’s Premier County”

The Pasco County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Department enhances the quality of life for all residents by providing parks and recreation facilities; managing, preserving and protecting Pasco County’s environmentally sensitive lands; offering educational activities; conducting community outreach; and developing programs and opportunities for everyone to enjoy. The administrative office is located at 4111 Land O’ Lakes Boulevard, Suite 202, Land O’ Lakes, Florida, 34639. You can call us at (813) 929-2760 or visit us online at: http://www.pascocountyfl.net/parks to learn more about Pasco County’s beautiful parks, environmental lands and recreation opportunities, or to reserve park facilities.