With sandy beaches tempting on every curve of the river and trails for paddlers and hikers to enjoy, Blackwater River State Park is the gateway to thousands of acres of public lands stretching northward to the Alabama border.
Address: 7720 Deaton Bridge Rd
Fees: $4 per vehicle
Land Manager: Florida Park Service
Open 8 AM until sunset daily. Leashed pets welcome but not on beaches or swimming areas. Call ahead regards the current pet policy for the campground.
Located along Deaton Bridge Rd just three miles north of US 90 in Harold. The parking area on the south side of the bridge provides access for the Chain of Lakes Trail and the Florida Trail in the Hutton Unit.
The parking lot on the left after the bridge is for access to the Juniper Creek Trail and a picnic area atop the bluffs.
The main entrance to the park, which includes the campground, nature trails, and swimming beach, is on the right.
Adjoining Blackwater River State Forest, this is the “Canoe Capital of Florida,” well-served by outfitters and cherished by backpackers for trails that showcase the Blackwater River and its tributaries.
Put in at Deaton Bridge and take a leisurely kayak trip upstream to float back along the clear, tannic waterway with its sandy bottom, or relax at the riverside campground and sun on a white sand beach.
Trails enable exploration of both sides of the river. On the southeast side of Deaton Bridge, the Chain of Lakes Trail showcases a series of swamps formed from cutoff oxbow bends on the river.
On the northeast side of Deaton Bridge, the Juniper Lake Trail connects the campground and the main recreation area with a series of boardwalks and footpaths. Along it, enjoy nice views of the river. A plaque points out the Florida Champion Atlantic white cedar.
The deeply forested campground makes for a pleasant place to pull in your trailer, RV, or camper van. We enjoyed being able to walk the boardwalk from it to the main pavilion area.
Activities at Blackwater River State Park
7.3 miles. Also known as the Juniper Creek Trail, the Florida Trail at Juniper Creek is a gorgeous place to explore, with its panorama at Red Rocks and botanical delights along and above the creek basin.
A candid review of the campground at Blackwater River State Park near Milton, where we spent nearly a week, in numerous different sites, in spring 2013.
Articles about Blackwater River State Park
It’s been a year since we purchased Primrose, our 1982 VW Vanagon. Here’s a recap of where we’ve been and what we’ve seen.
Back in camp on Day 3 of the Panhandle Trace Hike, we met up with Gail and Sally. Since we had to move Primrose to our next campsite – and we had to kill time, since someone was still occupying it – we a took detour to the Harold Store. En route I realized that …
On the third day of the 2013 Panhandle Trace Hike, we followed the Juniper Creek section of the Florida Trail away from the wildfires that burned to the north, experiencing beauty and absurdity along the way.
With two hikes behind us, we drove toward west to join the Panhandle Trace Hike. Knowing that after ten years of leading this event long-time Florida Trail Association activity leader Peggy Grantham would be retiring, Sandy wanted to participate this year and fill in a few new spots on the Florida Trail map. We arrived …