Monday, February 18, 2008

Springs Along The Santa Fe River

Almost immediately after paddling away from the Poe Springs run, I spotted this little boil gushing into the Santa Fe from below. The kids had just come out of Poe Springs, so they weren't stopping for this, but Mrs. FC and I paddled over to admire it.


See it?
I am playing size reference again so you can see just how small this little spring is ... I'm a smidge over 5'10" (Joe Average Guy) if that helps with your number crunching.

I was really wishing I had one of my dive masks with me so I could peer into the dark hole beneath the gusher.
These springs pour into the Santa Fe and Suwannee all along their routes. As we moved on, we constantly encountered boils along the river surface where submerged springs were flowing into the river.
The river itself is clear and tannin stained like ice tea (unsweetened of course). With a pair of polarized sunglasses, you can peer down into the depths even in the darker river proper.

Every once in a while a more substantial spring enters from the banks.

This is Rum Island Spring looking down the very short run to the river.
What a gem!
The spring opening is crystal blue with rocks and white sand surrounding the mouth.

Looking down into the Rum Island spring opening. Rum Island is a little park, so you don't have to get there by boat if you are a landlubber. It seemed extremely "little kid safe" with lots of very shallow water surrounding the spring mouth. Some tiny ones were splashing around and one minute one was actually snorkeling over the spring.


Above, Junior floats on crystal spring water and debates whether he should get back in.
The fact that he had just warmed up after swimming in Poe Springs kept him in the canoe.

We dallied a little while and then moved on into the tea colored river water to continue our journey.
This was such an excellent trip and doing it made me realize that I have not explored enough of the local freshwaters ... we are SUCH a saltwater family that I have neglected my limnology.
I plan to remedy that, so stay tuned for more sweetwater adventures.
Here is a neat site by Joe Follman and Richard Buchanan that illustrates some of the Santa Fe springs as well as many, many others.
I think I need to buy their book.


9 comments:

threecollie said...

So pretty! So springlike! Thanks! I didn't know there were such places...

valown said...

That water looks very refreshing. Funny thing, that "clear and tannin stained like ice tea (unsweetened of course)" sounds like something I've read often on another blawg, the "unsweetened of course" part.

robin andrea said...

You really captured the vivid clarity of the spring water, fc. It looks refreshing and very cold.

SwampAngel65 said...

I'm drooling...oh, it's so beautiful up there! I just told my hub that we HAVE to take our canoe and/or yaks up there and see it for ourselves.

pablo said...

That's all fascinating, of course, but what does your shirt say?

Sharon said...

Beautiful! Looks like a great way to spend the day :)

btw, I finally have my WOaks pics up, I had computer problems and thought I lost them all. Talk about panic! Luckily my brother, the boy wonder of the computer world, was able to fix it an save everything :)

Floridacracker said...

3C,
Florida is like a good piece of New York Swiss cheese with water gushing from each hole.

V,
Yes, it's a shout out to the RR sage.

Robin,
Thanks! The spring water is actually 72 degrees year round so it feels warm in the winter and cold in the hot summer air.

Swampangel,
That would be perfect for the Santa Fe. Troy Springs on the Suwannee is especially pretty with 80' depths and a civil war wreck.

Pablo,
It says, "One blood donation saves three lives."
I got it recently at the 8 gallon mark.
That's 64 donations ... times 3.

Alan said...

Pretty or not I must admit that springs give me the heebie-jeebies. When I was little I thought they would suck me in (a slightly reversed concept of hydrology there...) Never really have outgrown it. I love canoeing or boating, but prefer to only be in the water if the bottom is clear and there are no gaping holes below me. :)

Floridacracker said...

Alan,
There are siphons in some places where water is sucked down into the aquifer, so your heebie jeebiness has some basis in fact.
Check out Oleno state park where the entire Santa Fe river goes underground for a bit.