Time to get walking! Check out these free guided hikes in April

Put on your sunscreen, lace up those Nikes and walk until your heart is pounding. St. Lucie County is offering free guided hiking tours this April, giving participants the opportunity to learn about native habitats and wildlife. The hikes will take place at several parks in St. Lucie County.

>> Related: Best County Parks in Palm Beach County

The guided tours require registration prior to arrival. Pick your schedule and hike below and scroll down this page for additional information.

Related: Things to do on Spring Break 2017 in Palm Beach County

Guide: April 1 - 10 a.m. to noon: How Nature Can Fool Us Hike for Families

  • What better way to celebrate April Fool’s Day by getting outside and discovering how nature tricks us every day. You’ll investigate nature with binoculars and magnifiers to see camouflage, nests, patterns and wildlife.

Where: Citrus Hammock Preserve, 16511 Citrus Ave. Fort Pierce, FL 34982. 

Guide: April 6 - 8 to 10:30 a.m.: Discovering Ethnobotany Hike

Learn how early Florida natives lived and what plants they used to build shelter.

Going on a hike

A post shared by Emmanuel Pappas (@epibg) on

Where: Ancient Oaks Preserve/Weldon B. Lewis Park, 4650 Oleander Ave., Fort Pierce, FL. 

Related: Bucket list: things you must do in 2017 in Palm Beach County

Guide: April 8 - 8 to 10 a.m.: Historical Hammock Hike 

Shady hammock morning hike. Discover why elevated tree islands are important to the ecosystem. The trail goes through live oaks and old cabbage palms.

Where: Sweetwater Hammock Preserve, 4100 South 25th St., Fort Pierce, FL

Guide: April 8 - 7 to 9 p.m.: Nocturnal Neighbors Night Hike Part 5 

A nocturnal hike through ranch lands and citrus grove-turned natural areas. Look out for owl species and several silent flyers.

Where: Steven J. Fousek/Teague Hammock Preserve, 8551 Carlton Road, Port St. Lucie, FL. 34987

Guide: April 9 - 6:30 to 8 a.m.: Sunrise Hike 

  • Have a beach sunrise morning followed by a one-mile beach hike through a mature beach dune system. You’ll learn about coastal systems and changing environments.

Where: The Ocean Bay Beachside Preserve, 6851 South Ocean Drive, Jensen Beach, FL 34957 

Guide: April 16 - 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.: Plant ID Night Hike 

  • Check out interesting plants and organisms that live in both freshwater and lagoon habitat.

Where: D.J. Wilcox Preserve, 300 Michigan St, Fort Pierce, FL 34946 

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Guide: April 20 -  9 to 11 a.m.: Wrack-line Investigation and Beach Clean Up 

  • See the effects of the changing tides on the sandy beach. This short hike honors Earth Day and teaches tourists how to clean their beaches. 

Where: Ocean Bay Breach Preserve, 7600 South Ocean Drive, Jensen Beach, FL 34957. 

Guide: April 22 - 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.: River Clean-up Kayak Excursion

  • Participate in a clean-up by kayak. The tour will provide kayaks or bring your own. Pack your lunch for a picnic afterwards.

Where: Richard E. Becker Preserve, 3398 Selvitz Road, Fort Pierce. 

Guide: April 22 - 5 to 8 p.m. Moonshine Hike 

  • Hike the trails of the preserve during the evening and learn about the early Florida moonshiners, as well as the specific history of distillation of liquor at Bluefield Preserve.

Had to get a flex pic. on my hike this afternoon 😂

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Where: Bluefield Preserve, 30501 Bluefield Ranch Road, Port Saint Lucie, FL 34987.

Guide: April 23 - 9 to 11 a.m.: What’s Blooming Hike 

  • On this 1.25-mile hike on the AIS Trail you will search for native wildflowers and find out why Florida was name ‘the land of flowers.’ Expect mixed upland and wetland plant communities. 

Where: Spruce Bluff Preserve, 611 Dar Ln, Port St. Lucie, FL 34984

Guide: April 28 - 7:30 to 8:30 a.m.: Historic Trees Hike 

  • Check out massive Florida trees. You’ll see the “Three Sisters,” Slash Pines, a small pond, a nature trail, and small meadow area. 

Where: Citrus Hammock Preserve, 6511 Citrus Ave., Fort Pierce.

Guide: April 28 - 7 to 9 p.m.: Black-Light Night Hike, Part 4 

  • Enjoy a nighttime hike through the preserve. Keep an eye out for owls, nighthawks and plants that glow in the dark under a naturalist’s black-light. Learn how and why organisms change colors during the day and night.

Where: Ancient Oaks Preserve/Weldon B. Lewis Park, 4650 Oleander Ave., Fort Pierce, FL 34982

For more information:

Registration: Sign up for free guided hikes here.

Visit www.slchikes.org

Call 772-462-2526 

Email slchikes@stlucieco.org.

Good to know:

Proper footwear and water are required for all programs.  

Leave pets at home. 

Bring sunblock and bug repellent

All minors must be accompanied by a parent.

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