Tiger Bay State Forest consists of large areas of swamp with embedded pine islands and a large pine ridge area. The purchase of this forest began in 1977 under the Environmentally Endangered Lands Program, with additional acquisitions made in 1994 and 1998. Tiger Bay State Forest is located among several publicly owned lands that create wildlife corridors for species listed as endangered, threatened or of special concern. Roaming habitat is available for the Florida black bear as well as potential nesting and foraging area for the bald eagle.
Tiger Bay State Forest was severely impacted by the 1998 Summer Wildfire Firestorm. Approximately 15,000 acres of the forest were burned during these catastrophic wildfires. Restoration included extensive salvage timber removal, and reforestation efforts have been completed.
Tiger Bay State Forest is located in the central section of Volusia County, approximately 7 miles west of Daytona Beach. The forest extends north and south of U.S. Highway 92. Four forest access points are located off of U.S. Highway 92:
- To access the Rima Ridge Tract, go 4 miles west of the I-95/U.S. 92 interchange on U.S. 92 and turn north (right) onto Indian Lake Road for approximately 1 3/4 miles. This road takes you into the forest.
- The Dukes Island Road entrance leading to Rattlesnake Pond is 6 miles west of the I-95/U.S. 92 interchange on U.S. 92. The entrance is on the south (left) side of the road.
- The Old DeLand Road entrance is 7 miles west of the I-95/U.S. 92 interchange on U.S. 92. The entrance is on the north (right) side of the road. Access to the Rima Ridge Tract is also available by taking State Road 40 approximately 5 miles west of I-95. The entrance is on the left side of the road. Tiger Bay State Forest office headquarters is located on the north side of U.S. Highway 92, one-half mile west of the South Entrance. Parking for horse trailers is available at the headquarters.
- The Clarks Bay Road entrance is 8 1/2 miles west of the I-95/U.S. 92 interchange on U.S. 92
Tiger Bay State Forest was named after its largest physiographic feature, Tiger Bay, an extensive wetland that provides a critical aquifer recharge for the local area. Pine islands dot the extensive hydric swamp forest and comprise 40 percent of the property. Also found on the forest are two lakes, Indian Lake and Scoggin Lake, and several ponds. Coon Pond is a natural water body, while Rattlesnake Pond, Woody Pond and Ranch Pond are man-made ponds that are available to the public for fishing. Three unnamed man-made ponds are also located on the forest.
Recreational activities include hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, picnicking, boating, fishing, hunting, nature study and photography. Horseback riding and bicycling are allowed only on forest roads, firelines and designated trails. Tiger Bay State Forest contains one hiking trail (Buncombe) in the Florida Forest Service's Trailwalker Hiking Program and one equestrian trail (Rima Ridge) in the Florida Forest Service’s Trailtrotter Program.
There are two primitive camping areas on Tiger Bay State Forest. An equestrian campground has been added to the Rima Ridge Tract with four primitive campsites, several small horse corrals, and a non-potable water supply. Contact Tiger Bay State Forest to obtain a camping permit for either of the primitive camping areas.
Tiger Bay State Forest is managed as a Wildlife Management Area by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). Indian Lake and Rattlesnake Pond are open for fishing and small boat use. Hunting for white-tailed deer, hogs and small game is permitted during designated seasons.
Wildlife Management Areas
In keeping with its mission to protect and manage Florida's forest resources, the Florida Forest Service has developed rules that apply to all state forest visitors. Find out more about state forest fees and rules.