Expert Tour Of The Grayton Beach Dune Lake Trail

November 15, 2022 by Kurt Lischka

In celebration of Coastal Dune Lake Month in October, three experts from the University of Florida (UF-IFAS Walton County) led two different tours of the Dune Lake Trail in Grayton Beach State Park.

The nature trail surrounding Western Lake in Grayton Beach State Park is a wonder of nature and a great look at our beautiful and varied coastal landscape, from the forest to the Gulf. Tours & Lectures were held on October 5th and 19th, for a small fee, park entrance fee, and encouraged donations to the Friends of Grayton Beach State Park

The nature trail is approximately one-mile long through widlflower fields, massive dunes, oak and magnolia hammocks, and shady forest underneath the SoWal pines.

Laura Tiu, Evan Anderson, and Ian Stone led the tour along Western Lake, describing the history and ecosystem of our globally rare coastal dune lakes. Before the tour started, Laura and Melinda Gates, Environmental Coordinator for Walton County, described protection policies for the lakes. The walk along the nature trail meanders through coastal habitats including maritime hammocks, coastal scrub, salt marsh wetlands, and coastal forest. Kayaks and canoes are available to rent at the park is you wish to paddle Western Lake. There are also picnic shelters on the lake.


Grayton Beach State Park is one of the most popular state parks in Florida, with massive dunes, winding trails, abundant wildlife, and shimmering 100-acre Western Lake, one of many coastal dune lakes gracing Scenic Highway 30A along Scenic 30A in South Walton (SoWal). Read more about this beautiful state park at

Explore and learn more - Coastal Dune Lakes.

Kurt Lischka's picture

As a happy ambassador of South Walton, Kurt loves to share SoWal with the world through stories, photos, videos, texting, social media, and even telephone.

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