The Pruitt Trailhead located near Dunnellon south of State Road 484 in Marion County provides hikers, off-road cyclists, and equestrians access to trails within the Marjorie Harris Carr Cross Florida Greenway, the Halpata Tastanaki Preserve and the Ross Prairie State Forest. A portion of the Florida National Scenic Trail has been blazed through the area. The trailhead is particularly popular with equestrians due to access to some of the best riding trails in the state and a corral with a hand pitcher pump that provides water for horses. Other trailhead facilities include ADA parking, a portable toilet, and picnic tables. And, most recently, a new pavilion was added due to a generous $15,000 gift to the Foundation by a donor who wishes to remain anonymous.
The Pruitt Trailhead is named in memory of Mark Huntington Pruitt, the son of Dr. Crayton Pruitt and Frances Pruitt, former landowners of 8,110 acres now known as the Halpata Tastanaki Preserve. Halpata Tastanaki was a warrior chief during the Second Seminole War. Also known as Chief Alligator, the warrior led the largest Seminole brigade against Colonel Taylor’s armies. Having irritated the people who eventually came to be in charge, Halpata Tastanaki was relocated to Oklahoma.