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Mud Swamp/New River Wilderness

General Maps Contacts Area Management Wilderness Laws


The United States Congress designated the Mud Swamp/New River Wilderness (map) in 1984 and it now has a total of 8,075 acres. All of this wilderness is located in Florida and is managed by the Forest Service.


Florida doesn't get any more remote than this: no trails, no old roads, and no people. Most of the area is Mud Swamp, a region of very poorly drained clay-rich soil that holds more water than nearby Bradwell Bay Wilderness. Barely peeking above the standing water are many small, isolated islands. Heavy rainfall, especially in summer, combines with heat and humidity to provide the ideal environment for biting insects. In addition to hungry pests, this area houses hungry black bears and hungry alligators. Hiking can be perilous. The New River, by contrast, is lined with beautiful Atlantic white cedar. It enters from the north and flows through the cypress and gum swamps, relatively thin in understory, which dominate the Wilderness. Most visitors put in canoes at Carr Bridge and paddle down about six miles to old Magnolia Landing (not marked on newer maps). The route, a twisting waterway with numerous channels, is too challenging for novices.

Planning to Visit the Mud Swamp/New River Wilderness?

Leave No Trace

How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Mud Swamp/New River Wilderness.
  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
  2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
  3. Dispose of Waste Properly
  4. Leave What You Find
  5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
  6. Respect Wildlife
  7. Be Considerate of Other Visitors
For more information on Leave No Trace, Visit the Leave No Trace, Inc. website.

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