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Blue Spring State Park




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General Information

Blue Spring State Park
Copyright: - Florida Division of Recreation & Parks
Blue Spring State Park
Description - Blue Spring State Park is much more than a scenic area for canoeing and swimming; it plays a vital role in the survival of one of Florida's most beleaguered residents -- the manatee. Visitors can learn more about this endangered animal through ranger interpretive programs. A chair accessible observation platform provides a view of the endangered mammals that gather at the spring during the cooler months of the year. From November through March, the manatees leave the colder waters of the St. Johns River for the safety and comfort of the 72-degree spring.

The 2,483-acre site offers a plethora of outdoor recreation opportunities year-round.

Attractions - The park has 51 campsites with picnic tables, grills and water. Twenty-seven sites also have electric hookups. The campground is located in a pine forest within walking distance of the river and spring run. The campground offers accessible bathhouse facilities. Primitive camping is available to registered backpackers. The sites are at the end of a four-mile hiking trail that winds through shaded hammocks and open flatwoods. The park also has six cabins, each with central air / heat, fireplace, two bedrooms, bathroom, fully equipped kitchen (stove and refrigerator), screened in porch, an outdoor grill and picnic table. Linens, pillows, blankets, towels, cooking and eating utensils are provided (linen is not furnished on a daily basis). Reservations may be made up to eleven months in advance with a minimum stay of two nights.

Blue Spring State Park offers two separate picnic areas throughout the park. There are covered pavilions with grills located at these areas for larger groups. One of these areas also has a large covered barbecue pit, and can be reserved, for a fee, from October through March. Contact the park office for details.

Blue Spring offers swimming and scuba diving in a crystal clear, 72-degree spring run. Swimming or diving with the manatees is NOT permitted.

The same pristine beauty enjoyed by Florida's earliest residents still can be seen today. A self-guided boardwalk guides visitors through a lush hammock to Blue Spring.

From the accessible fishing pier, anglers will find an abundance of bluegills and blue cats, in addition to largemouth bass, shellcrackers and speckled perch. A Florida freshwater fishing license is required for individuals age 16 years and older. A concession stand offers snacks, camping supplies and limited groceries. Canoe rentals are available.

Recreation - Blue Spring State Park offers scuba diving, camping, picnicking, swimming and canoeing in Big Spring Run, and boating and fishing on the St. Johns River. Viewing the endangered manatees is a favorite winter attraction.

Climate - The eastern coast of central Florida is usually hot and humid with thunderstorms throughout summer. Average summer temperatures range between 81 and 83 degrees Fahrenheit (27 - 29 Celsius). Winters are mild and dry with temperatures averaging 58 - 64 degrees Fahrenheit (14 - 18 Celsius). Typical yearly precipitation ranges from less than 52 inches to about 56 inches. Lightweight clothing and sunscreen are highly recommended during the summer months. Sweaters and jackets are appropriate attire in winter.

Location - Blue Spring State Park is located in central Florida, two miles west of Orange City on French Avenue and north of Orlando.


Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: Jeff (Longwood, Florida)
Number of People Encountered: 25-50 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: July 2003 In kayaks, my wife and I put in and took out at Blue Springs boat launch. In between, we paddled up Snake Creek which was beautiful. Along this winding and secluded stretch, for 2 hours we saw no other human beings, but saw and heard ospreys, one fairly large water moccasin, and too many gators to count (most of which we just heard croaking as we paddled past). The only negative part of this leg was that the water plants had grown over the river in about 5 or 6 places, making the paddling much more strenuous. Snake Creek enters the Dead River just south of Hontoon Island where we stopped for a sandwich, before paddling back upstream (though heading south) to Blue Springs on the St Johns River, hugging the shoreline while the big boats and jet skis passed by. It was a Saturday, so there were quite a few boats; midweek would have significantly less traffic on the water.


More Information

Contact Information:
Blue Spring State Park, 2100 West French Avenue , Orange City, FL, 32763, Phone: 904-775-3663

Additional Information:
Central East Florida - Central East Florida is known for its beautiful hard-surfaced beaches, tall white hotels and condominiums, Kennedy Space Center, and the state's premier birding site, Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge.
Florida Lakes, Rivers & Springs - The lakes, rivers and springs in Florida range from huge fresh water lakes to spring-fed serpentine rivers to year-round naturally warm swimming holes.
Florida State Parks - The mission of the Florida Park Service is to provide resource-based recreation while preserving, interpreting and restoring natural and cultural resources.

Links:
Florida Division of Recreation & Parks - Official agency website.

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