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Santa Fe Canoe Outpost

Below you will find several trip options for paddling on the Santa Fe River starting at Canoe Outpost 

Poe Paddle

Outpost to Poe Springs. A wonderful down river paddle that allows you to end at the beautiful park Poe Springs.

3+ hrs.

Rum Trip

Outpost to Rum Island Park. This is a nice 7 mile down river paddle. Great for those that want to see a few springs.

4+ hrs.

The Ultimate Paddle

A long down river paddle, but lovely and full of so much to see. Pass over 10 springs for your viewing pleasure.

5+ hrs.

Out & Back

A paddle up river. This is an out and back paddle. Allows you to visit locations upriver from the Outpost.

3+ hrs. 

Closed Wednesday & Tuesday
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Santa Fe Canoe Outpost was recently sold by Jim Wood, who faithfully served the North Florida community for 31 years. Santa Fe Canoe Outpost was purchased by the city of High Springs (COHS). With AOA as the contracted internal operators, COHS & AOA asks for your patience as we work towards making this location the best starting point for Santa Fe River paddling trips. 

Current operating hours: Thursday - Monday 9-5

We offer Kayak/Canoe Rentals or you can bring your own equipment

You choose your destination, launch your vessel from our rustic outpost, then have fun paddling down the river. When your paddle is over, we'll pick you up and bring you back to the outpost! 

All of which can be reserved by pressing the book now button above

If you have any questions feel free to visit our FAQ page send us an email myaoafun@gmail.com or give us a call 352-507-0059

Click the Book Now button below and reserve your kayak trip today

The Ultimate Paddle

Forsake the daily grind and embark on a journey that will arouse the senses and your mind. The Ultimate Paddle trip (14 Miles) is a one of a kind experience that will create everlasting Memories! Just imagine a down-river paddle alongside the Florida wild river banks where one is likely to see deer, cranes, and turtles galore. On this Adventure you will have the amazing opportunity to visit at least 10 springs. Below we will describe the trip and each spring so that you can decide if you wish to visit them all or just a select few.

For the first 2.5 miles you will have a quiet paddle through untouched landscape allowing you the view of wildlife and forestry that only a state conservation area can provide. The 27 bridge will be your landmark, letting you know that you have 2.5 miles to go for the first spring.

The first spring that you will encounter will be Poe Springs. Poe will be located on the left side of the river and will have a very short spring run of glassy clear water flowing into the darker Santa Fe. Travel into the spring and enjoy a cool dip in this large but less trafficked spring before continuing your Adventure. Poe is greener than other springs on this list. This green look comes from a mixture of iron and sulfur deposits. So lots of minerals for your body to soak up. (If you are into that sort of thing)

 

The next spring to visit would be Lily Springs with its high rise embankment and a spring run that is shaped loosely like a “?”, provides for a tranquil stop along the way that is private property and lagoon like in nature. This spring pumps out over 20 thousand gal. a day and is a delightful place to picnic due it being one of the springs in this roster that is unreachable by road.

 

The next stop on your journey would be Mermaid Springs. Mermaid Springs is shaped like a mermaid tail and although it is small, it is practically breath-taking in appearance. The crystal clear water and shallowness, allows for a quick wading area to visit. Mermaid is only reachable by water so it is usually not crowded at all.

 

4th on the list… Noneother than the famous Rum Island Springs. Rum Island splits the river for a short moment, which allows you the opportunity to view the entire island if you so desire. Many animals call this island home and during the months of January and February the spring itself is one of the best spots to view manatee. The spring of Rum Island is not located on the island at all. It, instead, is located directly behind the island, off of the shore of Rum Island Park. Rum Island Park is newly renovated and has restroom facilities along with stair access to the spring. There is no charge for river access to Rum Island Park. They do charge for parking though.

 

Directly after Rum, only ¼ mile down river on the left side sits the absolutely gorgeous R.B.K Gilchrist Blue Springs State Park. As of 2022 it is still the newest State Park in FL. Objectively the most beautiful spring on the lower Santa Fe. Gilchrist Blue has a ¼ mile spring run that does have a decent current. It is able to be paddled though, and so worth it! As you paddle the spring run you will see another spring to your left. Naked Springs. This spring has been both naturally and unnaturally barricaded for turtle and spring conservation. Still worth the view even though you no longer can get in. How nature has once again kissed this spring, is nothing shy of magical. Continue further up the spring run and you will reach the head spring… Big Blue! This spring is a wide open bowl and pumps out over 40 mil. Gal. of crystal clear, fresh, spring water a day. This spring comes by its name honestly. The crystal clear water mixed with the depth and limestone, creates a blue mirage below the water’s surface. A perfect stop for a nice swim with restroom facilities and concessions, plus it being almost center point for the 8 miles. What more reason do you need? This park does require a $2 per person fee for those who exit their boat and enjoy the park's amenities. The $2 is worth it, if for nothing else than to get out and walk around to the land based side of Naked Springs that we mentioned before. Walking past Naked Spring there is a trail that will lead you back to another well hidden spring called Johnson, this spring is another beautiful hidden gem that is worth the walk.

 

Coming in at number 6 on the list is Devil’s Ear. This spring is part of the Ginnie Springs Campground. This area is private property and if you park your boat or get out of your paddlecraft, Ginnie Springs will charge per person (which at the time of this is $35). You can paddle in and view the spring though. Devil's ear is another large spring and very deep. This spring is a diver’s dream. Be advised, Ginnie Springs during the summer months can be a bit 18+ in a lot of ways. This campground is private property and can be extremely busy, especially in the summer months.

 

Next stop, July Spring. Directly across the river from Devil’s Ear lies this beautiful lonely spring. She is just as beautiful as many on this list but often overlooked due to her close proximity to Ginnie Springs. This spring is not accessible by road, and many who pass this spring are looking left at Ginnie so completely miss this quiet little nook of paradise. This spring is another free use spring. There is no cost to enjoy its stunning beauty, its calm composure, its mystical curiosity, and its serene compassion.

 

Ginnie Spring itself is number 8. This spring is part of the Ginnie Springs Campground. This area is private property and if you park your boat or get out of your paddlecraft, Ginnie Springs will charge per person (which at the time of this is $35). This spring is absolutely amazing, with the glass like water and 150 foot spring run, with the trees hugging the bowl it is extremely picture worthy! Be advised, Ginnie Springs during the summer months can be a bit 18+ in a lot of ways. This campground is private property and can be extremely busy, especially in the summer months.

Second to last, #9 Dogwood Springs. This spring is part of the Ginnie Springs Campground. This area is private property and if you park your boat or get out of your paddlecraft, Ginnie Springs will charge per person (which at the time of this is $35). A smaller spring of the Ginnie Springs Campground, but well worth the stop. A slight curve to the spring run itself allows for an interesting paddle in. Finally coming to rest in the bowl, which is like the cute little sister to Ginnie itself. Very similar in many ways to the main spring but charming where Ginnie can be overwhelming due to its size.  Be advised, Ginnie Springs during the summer months can be a bit 18+ in a lot of ways. This campground is private property and can be extremely busy, especially in the summer months

 

Last on the list… Twin Springs. This spring is part of the Ginnie Springs Campground. This area is private property and if you park your boat or get out of your paddlecraft, Ginnie Springs will charge per person (which at the time of this is $35). A smaller spring of the Ginnie Springs Campground, but well worth the stop. Very similar in many ways to the main spring but charming where Ginnie can be overwhelming due to its size. Be advised, Ginnie Springs during the summer months can be a bit 18+ in a lot of ways. This campground is private property and can be extremely busy, especially in the summer months.

 

After visiting this last spring, enjoy a soothing paddle for approximately an hour to an hour and one half. This paddle is surrounded by trees and beautiful homes and can be a nice transition from the hum of Ginnie. Peaceful nature, the moving river, sounds of Florida and finally coming to an end at Santa Fe River Park. 

 

Don’t live your life wondering what the springs can do for your soul. Come and see for yourself and be whisked away on a magical Adventure with Anderson’s Outdoor Adventures. The only provider of The Ultimate Paddle on this breathtaking stretch of the Santa Fe!

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