Park & trail maps

All about the park

In 1848, settler James Alderman built his homestead south of the Alafia River in Lithia. He fashioned a crossing by cutting down the steep banks of the river, creating Alderman’s Ford. This historic site is now home to Alderman’s Ford Conservation Park, a hot spot for hikers and nature enthusiasts.

The park's most popular attraction is a 1.9 mile paved loop that follows the north and south prongs of the Alafia River-- one of the most popular canoe spots in the state. The loop, which is hiker, dog walker, and bicycle friendly, links with a boardwalk and foot bridges, leading into shaded woods of gigantic cypress and oak trees.

Visit Alderman's Ford Conservation Park and enjoy a day of birdwatching, fishing or hiking the lush woods. The park also hosts four remote campsites for anyone seeking a real wilderness experience without going too far from home.

Canoe launch entrance information

The canoe launch entrance is located at 9625 Canoe Launch Loop Lithia, FL 33547. The launch entrance opens daily at 7 AM to allow joggers and walkers early access to the park.

Camping information

Primitive camping

Primitive campsites can be reserved by calling the park office at (813) 757-3801. These remote sites have a picnic table, hammock stands, and fire pits. There is no water or electricity. An approximately 1 to 1.5 mile hike is required to reach the sites. Restroom facilities (no showers) are located approximately one-half mile from the sites.

Youth group camping

We also offer camping for non-profit, 501(c) youth groups, which can accommodate groups as small as 12 to as large as 50. These sites have potable water, picnic tables and fire pits, but no electricity. The cost is $2 per night, per person and reservations are required. To reserve youth group camping sites, you must provide proof you are with an organized youth group.

Learn more about camping

Park rules

  • Swimming is not permitted anywhere in the park
  • There is no electric at the shelters, and generators are not allowed
  • Dogs are allowed in the park, but must be on a 6-foot hand held leash at all times
  • Alcohol and intoxicated people are not permitted in the park
  • Pets, bicycles and skateboards are not permitted on the boardwalk

Shelter rentals

To rent a shelter, visit the Rent Picnic Shelters & Meeting Rooms page for information on fees and things consider. Use the Conservation online registration system link found in the How to section.

Image Caption: Alderman Ford trail - taken during the 2019 - 2020 Hiking Spree
Last Modified: 4/22/2024, 6:15:11 PM