Morrison Springs

 

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Essentials:

  • It’s Free!
  • The springs really are beautiful
  • Get there early to avoid crowds
  • If you have a kayak or canoe, bring it
  • Spring water is cold-always

Our Story:

Have you ever looked at a picture or watched a movie clip and asked yourself, “Is that place even real?” I feel that way when I look back at my own pictures of Morrison Springs. I remember puling up to the parking lot. I was really impressed with the new pavement, nice pavilion and new boardwalks. I wasn’t expecting that. Certainly not at a free park!

Lindsay and I have been there twice before for scuba diving. It had been about 10 years ago. Last time there was just a clay parking lot. People parked wherever they wanted and by the time the crowds arrived it seemed like every backwoods country Floridian was there.

This time felt different though. It was about 9:30 in the morning when we arrived. The sun hadn’t burned the dew from the trees or the morning fog from the sky. The steam rolled off the bright blue water like a movie special effect. I couldn’t believe this was the same place I had been to before. We walked down the long boardwalk onto the swim platform to look into the clear spring water. None of us were willing to just jump right into the cold spring. We set up a spot on the beach and slowly made our way in from shore. Eventually the sun rose high and heated up the air. The spring was still cold but felt great in the Florida sun.

As the temperature rose so did the crowds. The almost private retreat we had was filling up fast. Some northern tourists were early arrivers with us. I don’t believe they stayed long after more locals showed up. This particular day didn’t explode with the backwoods folks from years past but its safe to say it’s not the typical Florida beach crowd. Also, as Morrison is a dive destination many divers began setting up their equipment on the beach. One of the more interesting things to see here is the difference in people. Some with very expensive dive gear loaded into brand new trucks and others with a case of beer and a towel.

 

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The new boardwalks and public areas did have the affect of making the actual beach much smaller. By noon not much room was left, partly because the divers’ gear takes up so much room. We rinse off in the showers on site and pull out. I notice the parking lot is full and cars are filing into the overflow lot about 100 yards away. Conveniently, drop off sites were built adjacent to the beach so you don’t have to drag your stuff that far.

If you want to ease into the water and sit on the beach. My advice is to get there early and on a weekday. If you bring a canoe or kayak I bet there’s plenty to explore. I think I’ll do that next time.

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