NEWS: The Martin Grade Is Now Florida's 25th Scenic Highway!
As a Florida Scenic Highway, The Grade is governed by a Corridor Management Plan that creates a framework for protecting the trees for generations to come. You can help us fulfill the promises made in that plan by supporting the Martin Grade Scenic Highway on May 5-6 through the GREAT GIVE.
Click here to contribute through the GREAT GIVE
This historic, 12-mile road is shaded by a canopy of hundred-year-old oaks and is surrounded by pastures, groves, swamps, and woods just as it was when it was carved out of the wilderness by the region's earliest settlers.
Photo by: Thomas Winter
Photo by: Thomas Winter
The Road That Time Forgot
A drive across the Martin Grade is a drive through the beauty of Old Florida – through land that time seems to have forgotten. To the east lie barrier islands, rich lagoons, and flowing rivers that characterize Florida’s Atlantic Coast. To the west lies Lake Okeechobee, the second largest fresh water lake in the United States. In between, are the Allapattah Flats, remnants of the impenetrable sloughs and wet prairies that once made up the Alpatiokee Swamp in the northern Everglades.
The Road Back To The Land
Although the land along the Grade has been altered by more than a century of human use, much of it has been targeted for public acquisition and protection. The remainder is being used just as it was used 100 years ago – for cattle grazing and citrus. Time on the Martin Grade once seemed to be standing still, and now seems to be going backward.
The Road Back To Nature
The Grade takes you to the 22,000-acre Allapattah Flats Wildlife Management Area, which is open to the public year-round. Recreational opportunities include hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, primitive camping, hunting. fishing and wildlife viewing. Visitors may hike or bike on the five mile long trail system leading to an open marsh popular with wading birds. There are separate trails for equestrians as well as a 150-acre riding area.
The Martin Grade Scenic Corridor is Martin Highway (County Road 714), between Allapattah Road (State Road 609) and Warfield Boulevard (State Road 710). Centrally located between the unique and distinct communities of Stuart, Indiantown, and Okeechobee, the Martin Grade begins just ten miles west of Palm City, Florida.
Produced by Sustaining Community Lands, Inc. For background information on the Martin Grade visit www.SCLands.org