Created when the Woodruff Dam was built in 1947, Lake Seminole is where the waters of the Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers meet.
Below the dam is the Apalachicola River. Above the dam is Three Rivers State Park, established in 1955 to provide recreational access to this new reservoir.
Of the four nature trails at Three Rivers State Park, this pair – the Lakeview Trail and the Ridge Trail – are the most heavily used.
That’s because there are two access points to the 2.5-mile trail system, which forms a nice loop between the day use area and the campground.
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Length: 2.5 mile loop
Trailhead: 30.742840, -84.921058
Address: 7908 Three Rivers Park Rd, Sneads FL 32460
Fees: $3 per vehicle
Restroom: At the day use area
Land manager: Florida State Parks
Open daily 8 AM to sunset. Leashed dogs welcome. While the day use area has accessibility, the nature trails are natural surface footpaths.
The park is immediately west of the line between the Eastern and Central Time Zones, so allot for that if you’re coming from the Tallahassee area.
From the junction of US 90 and SR 71 in Marianna, north of Interstate 10, drive east along US 90 for 15.6 miles to Sneads.
From the east, approach Sneads via US 90 west from Chattahoochee or by SR 286 north from Interstate 10 to US 90.
Follow River Rd north from US 90. The park entrance is on the right after 2 miles.
Starting from the day use area, walk from the picnic pavilions over towards the road leading down to the boat ramp to find the Ridge & Lakeview Trails sign.
After you cross the road, look for a Nature Trails sign. The trail is blazed with orange markers. A connector leads you to a signposted junction for the loop.
Stay left at the first junction. You’re walking through a bluff forest with large trees, with scattered spruce pines among the American beech and magnolia.
In spring, trillium grows along the slopes. When you get to the next junction, the trail straight ahead empties out by the boat ramp at the campground.
Take the right, which puts you on the return of the 2-mile loop in the middle of the trail through a shady hardwood forest along the shoreline of Lake Seminole.
There was at least one point where we could walk down to the water, but be cautious of alligators sunning. They are legendary in their numbers here.
Walking beneath hickory and elm trees, you complete the loop by climbing back up to the first junction. Turn left to exit and return back to the picnic area.
See our photos from Three Rivers State Park
More worth exploring while you’re in this area.
Chattahoochee Nature Trails system treats hikers to an exploration of botanically-rich habitats along bluffs and ravines near the Apalachicola River and an archaeological site towering over the river’s edge.
Above the Apalachicola River, the community of Chattahoochee hides a natural treasure in its deep ravines—a park named for its native son, botanist Angus Gholson.
Fed by first-magnitude Jackson Blue Spring and nearly a dozen smaller springs, Merritt’s Mill Pond is a waterway unlike any other in Florida, its unusual hues trapped between rocky slopes and edged with moss-draped cypress trees.