The Goethe Giant: A Giant Adventure


Goethe Giant - Giant Cypress Tree in Florida

We had gone to Rainbow Springs and decided to make a second stop for the day to see the Goethe Giant. A giant cypress tree that is over 900 years old and 105 feet tall in the Goethe State Forest. It was around 30 mins away and oh boy was it an adventure!! It started to rain as we left Rainbow Springs which should have been our first warning that this might not be the best idea.

I got directions from a blog I found and was using that plus the Longitude and Latitude as there is no address for this location. We end up doing pretty well finding where we are supposed to be going and got to the dirt road as described. I am thinking a dirt road would probably be okay to drive on in my Corolla… until we get there. The road is not quite wide enough for two cars and is filled with pot holes!! The pot holes just keep getting worse the longer we drive! it is around 3 miles and takes about 8 mins to drive. The longest 8 minutes EVER. It was like the scene from Twister when all the tractors and the house comes flying at them,  LEFT! RIGHT! LEFT! (minus the flying cows).


Mind you we were only going like 10 – 20 miles an hour but it was also raining and the holes were hard to see until you were right on top of them. We saw two other trucks who looked at us like we were crazy, the one truck passed us twice and was laughing at us. I swear the second time they came back just to make sure we weren’t stuck. Nowhere in anything I researched did it say that you needed a truck to visit this tree! I would definitely suggest it.

We finally saw the sign (the sign is easy to spot) and parked in the soggy grass. I guess we didn’t think ahead and realize the trail would be a soggy mess because of the rain! LOL. Oh well, we still did it. We had to maneuver some puddles but once we got closer there is a boardwalk that leads to the tree. The area is very swampy and the tree’s base is sitting in water.

Goethe Giant - Giant Cypress Tree in Florida

The tree itself is beautiful. Many of the trees in the area were harvested but this giant was left alone because it had too many knots and imperfections. Apparently there are some other large trees and large stumps of the trees cut down by the logging industry in the area.

Then we heard gunshots, so this forest must be used for hunting? I don’t know anything about hunting. Not sure how close they are allowed to come to the trails but it might be good to wear bright colors if you decide to visit. With that and the rain picking up, we headed out as I was worried we would get stuck in that dirt road.

Goethe Giant - Giant Cypress Tree in Florida

It was worth it, even though the drive was a little stressful, we were laughing the whole way.  Plus, now we have a great story to tell of our giant adventure!

Melissa P.

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