If you’re looking to spend some time off the sand, fun seekers may want to consider the Ream Wilson Trail, a popular but less crowded paved path for bicyclers, walkers, hikers and inline skaters. Users will pass through tree covered and open areas and connect with many city parks, each of which has convenient parking.
Recreation enthusiasts will find the western end of this trail located at the always-busy Long Center off of Belcher Rd. Ream Wilson Trail, named after a long-time city parks and recreation director, meanders past Northeast Coachman Park and Disc Golf Course (think Frisbee®), neighborhood Coachman Ridge Park and the Philadelphia Phillies spring training complex, Carpenter Field, on Old Coachman Rd., north of Drew St., before traveling beneath U.S. Highway 19.
Travel eastward past Cliff Stephens Park, also home to disc golf, and get a glimpse of Moccasin Lake Nature Park*, too. Kapok Park (not located at the famous kapok tree on McMullen Booth Rd.) with the Kapok Spur can provide a bit of a diversion before passing near Eddie C. Moore Recreation Complex along Drew St., with its seven baseball fields.
The trail rises above McMullen Booth Rd. courtesy of a pedestrian bridge before returning back to ground level near residential Del Oro Park with basketball and tennis courts and a playground. At Coopers Bayou Park on Bayshore Blvd., the trail takes a distinctive left turn and heads north into Safety Harbor where it ties into this city’s namesake trail. No excuse is needed to stop, relax and take in views of Tampa Bay on the last leg of this journey. For a map of Clearwater trails, click here.
The Ream Wilson Trail near Carpenter Field ties into the northern end of the Progress Energy Trail. By taking this path south, bikers, skaters, hikers and walkers – in the near future – will be able to access the soon-to-be-built Druid Trail. Its construction will complete the last east-west link between Clearwater Beach and Tampa Bay. Most importantly it will provide full access from all these trails to the well-known north-south Pinellas Trail which runs 34-miles from Tarpon Springs to the north to St. Petersburg to the south using an abandoned rail right of way.
If you are based on Clearwater Beach, you can take the Memorial Causeway Trail east, enjoying views of the Clearwater Beach Marina, Island Estates with the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, home to two famous movie stars Winter and Hope from the movies Dolphin Tale I and II, and mangrove trees growing in saltwater. This trail crosses over the Intracoastal Waterway via the trail’s namesake bridge. Heading east this now urban trail crosses over the Pinellas Trail between Garden and Myrtle avenues. Continue on to Glen Oaks Park between Betty Ln. and Hillcrest Ave., knowing it will soon tie-in to miles and miles of outdoor recreation.
*Closed for renovation thru August 2018.