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Northern Florida Springs  

Ichetucknee River & Springs

This is the premier spot for tubing and exploring one of the clearest rivers in Florida.. Ichetucknee Springs offers a 3-hour and 1.5-hour tube run down the Ichetucknee River. This is virtual paradise! It is a very relaxing ride down a beautiful landscape with crystal clear water. As you can see in the picture to the right, there is a canopy of trees that tower over you as you gently float down the river at a moderate 1-knot. I suggest bringing a mask so you can see the abundant fish and plant life. The full float down the river is only open during certain seasons (summer mainly) while the shorter float is open year round. You can also snorkel the entire run to see the beautiful bottom (wetsuit required). Check the Florida Parks website for exact times.

Ichetucknee Springs also permits scuba diving if you are cave certified during certain times of the year. There is a small fee for diving. Blue Hole (right) has an extensive cave system with a strong outflow. The bottom of the hole opening is at a 30 foot depth. The other main headspring, Ichetucknee Spring, has a large basin and can be snorkeled. Depths reach about 22 feet. No scuba diving is allowed in this spring.

Peacock Springs

Peacock Springs/Slough is owned by the state. It includes Orange Grove Sink, Peacock springs and some smaller sinks in the same park. This site is known for its extensive underwater cave system for many cave certified divers. Peacock spring varies in depths from 18 to 60 feet and quickly turns into a cave dive upon entering the area. Orange Grove sink is generally covered in Duckweed and algae blooms and visibility can vary. A large cavern starts at about 40 feet and extends down to 110 feet. A cave opening at about 52 feet takes you through 28,000 feet of cave passage way. Any further exploration should be left to the experienced cave diver. Don't take the chance of exploring further, many people have died in this sink system just going "a little bit more." In 2003 peacock allowed open water divers in Orange Grove sink only with out dive lights. Check the status before venturing at your local dive shop.

Directions:
From Mayo head North on S-51, Cross over the a long bridge over the Suwannee River. Look for sign on right about 1 mile after bridge.

Troy Spring

Worthy site to visit for scuba diving. Located in north Florida, Troy Springs has a large spring basin with depths to 80 feet. The visibility is good and offers many things to explore including the remnants of an old Confederate steamboat that was sunk. Cave to small for penetration. Good site for open water divers. Downside, the spring and basin is covered in green algae and is not visually impressive. The spring emptys into the Suwannee River with a strong outflow. Good 1/2 to full day of diving. From Branford head northwest on us 27 for 5 miles and look for the "Troy Springs" sign, turn right and head on a dirt road about 1/2 mile to the spring.


Branford Springs

Located in the town of Branford on the Suwannee river, Branford spring is a popular spot for the locals. Large pool with depths to about 9 feet. There is a small vent on the south side of the spring that leads to a cave blocked by concrete rubble. A wooden deck has been built around the spring. Water clarity dpends on how many people are swimming in it. Depths vary w/ the river height. Decent snorkel dive. There is a dive shop close by for air fills.

Ginnie Springs

Wow! What an amazing natural site. Ginnie Springs Resort, located in central Florida, is a set of several different springs that offer excellent scuba diving and snorkeling. The water is a steady 72 degrees year round and has perfect visibility. Ginnie Springs features 55 campsites, bathhouses, RV hook-ups, dive gear rentals, tank fills, convenience store and several other creature comforts. The springs of consequence to the diver are: Ginnie Spring, Devil's Eye, and Devil's Ear. Open water divers may enter all the caverns and caves but can only bring a dive light in Ginnie's main headspring. Don't venture if you're not experienced, people have died here. This is one site highly recommend to the experienced diver or novice visiting the springs for the first time. "Blue Spring" or "Ginnie Spring" inside Ginnie Springs Resort opens up to a big outflow of water flowing into the Santa Fe river. This is the biggest pool at Ginnie Springs and can be penetrated to a depth of 55 feet. Divers will encounter a large cavern room with many crevices to explore. There is a grating at the bottom that prevents access to the cave entrance. Many people have died here before that grating was put up. Now this main headspring is one of the safest cavern dives in Florida. Dive lights are allowed here, even for the open water diver. Snorkelers can swim in the spring basin and part of the cavern.
FEES: $27 for open water divers, $7 for Snorkelers. Check prices, as they may change.
Ginnie Springs Site

Tubing! This is also alot of fun. If your tired of diving then just sit back and relax while you float down the Santa Fe river. Ginnie Springs offers tube rental as well.

Ecofina Creek

Econfina Creek, located in Northwest Florida, offers several small springs accesible by a canoe or small boat. Take I-10
to US-231 south about 23 miles past Fountain, then turn left
on S-20 about 7 miles to Econfina Creek bridge. The first spring, Willford Spring, is located about 1.5 miles north of the bridge and can be canoed to. It's about 15 feet deep with a small basin and cave opening. About 4 miles down is Blue Spring. It can be reached by crossing a beaver dam. Depths here are about 25 feet with two cave openings. About 1 mile downstream of the bridge is Gainer Springs. There are several small springs in a large pool with rocks. Good for snorkeling. Just downstream is Emerald Spring which has a cavern that can be penetrated. The water is crystal clear here. Just upstream from Emerald are several more small springs that can be snorkeled. A whole day can be spent here exploring the springs either scuba diving or snorkeling.

Cow Spring

Cow spring is a spring-siphon located in thick woods. As you can see from the picture, it doesn't look that inviting, but there is a beautiful cave inside. The cave entrance is at about 8 feet leading back to a small room. Several hundred feet of cave passage way have been mapped here. Maximum depth is 40 feet. The water can be very clear at certain times.

Advanced Cave Dive
The cave diving section of the National Speleological Society has purchased the land. In order to dive the spring you must be a member. www.cavediver.org

Devil's Den

Devil's Den is a natural Florida phenomenon. A large dry cave that extends down about 60 feet to the waterline. Scuba divers will enjoy this rarity as they swim through ancisent history. From the water line you enter a sinkhole with many caverns and crevaces to explore. Depths reach 65 feet and visibilty is dependant upon the number of divers in the pool that day. Admission is around $27 to dive.

Sea Dogs

Spring Dives | Central FL

 

 

 

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