Rock Springs Run
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Rock Springs Run

If you are in the Orlando area, try spending an hour or so on Rock Springs Run. Just outside of Longwood, which is northeast of Orlando on I-4. You can access the run at Kelly Park, which is where the run starts. A neat, clean picnic area overlooks the main spring and swimming area. There is camping available among the pine trees and just up the road you can launch your canoe into crystal clear spring water and leave development behind. At times the river meanders through a narrow jungle passage, threading its way through swampy woods, then running wide and shallow thru tall reeds, in twisting channels, you won’t be bored!

There is one area where the deer come out in the river to feed off the water plants and I have always seen deer at that same spot year after year, and once surprised a doe with her fawn.

You can call it quits at any place along the run and paddle back upstream to your car, or continue down the run to junction with the Wekiva. A short paddle down the river is Wekiva Island, another put-in option. Wekiva Island is extremely popular on the weekends, especially when it is nice out. Keep this in mind if you are looking for solitude. You can also put in (or take out) at Katie’s Landing, another 8 or 9 miles downstream. The Wekiva is nice, but not as nice or as interesting as Rock Springs Run.