Saturday, March 19, 2011

Blackwater River State Park

After a fun weekend in Navarre, FL with my parents and sis, her hubby, and my niecey-poo, we hit the road to go camping.
Our intentions were to go to the Florida Caverns State Park just an hour and 45 minutes away and explore the beautiful caves there.
Ah, but the best laid plans...
Let's just say that almost 7 hours of travel later, we end up at Blackwater River State Park only 25 minutes from Navarre...
Yeah, talk about major frustration.

It actually worked out SO much better. 
The cavern tours were sold out for the day only to be closed the following 2 days and the campground was full. I have been wanting to go to Blackwater River for several years now and it didn't disappoint.
We arrived there 30 minutes before sunset and the awesome Park Ranger directed towards the campground, but also mentioned the primitive (and FREE!!) campsites in the adjoining State Forest.
One look at the park campground, we quickly realized Florida State Parks are designed mainly for RVs and camping in a concrete jungle set amongst the (beautiful) Pines was not what we had in mind.
So, we drove around to the State Forest just a minute or so away and this is what we found...

 This beautiful bluff overlooking the Blackwater River. 
It was perfectly encircled with huge pines shaping a gorgeous view of the sky.

Now, if you can't tell from the pictures, the Blackwater River is gorgeous with it's tannic and clean water that is on average only 2.5' deep with many, many sandbars. The river has this beautiful sandy bottom that rivals the gorgeous white sands of Florida's Emerald Coast Beaches. You can easily canoe, kayak and tube down the river and find your own private sandbar and beach to picnic and play.

 our little the setting sun to get the tent up.

ah, dogs for breakfast.

ready for a little lunchtime hike to find a spot to picnic

Inspecting some thorns from our pavillion off the trail where we ate our lunch...
they were "Amazing" Tripp said.

Beautiful Cypress Swamp

Florida Champion White Cedar

 finding a spot to fish

 Look at that grin

I just love this pic for some reason.

 Party animals...they get it honestly from ole Papa Bear.

 Our mess.
Our Campsite

 Snuggling to stay warm Wednesday morning.
It was CHILLY!

 Tripp had succeeded in getting both pairs of his shoes soaking wet.
So, while his Keens dried by the fire, he had some makeshift foil boots :)

 Loaded up and headed home!

We'll definitely return to Blackwater River State Park again!
It will be even more fun when it's a little warmer and we can tube down the river.


  1. I am still laughing at Tripp's foil boots!!!

    That park looks beautiful and it certainly seems like yall had a good time. We need to plan a trip soon!

  2. hey there...I saw your blog when I was looking for info on camping at blackwater.

    So, how long did it take to find this site? Was it easy to get to?

    I've been to the park's actual campground & didn't like the (concrete/RV) look of it either, so this is really interesting!

  3. It was SO easy! We actually just returned there during May, but I haven't put up pics yet. This site and many other nice primitive sites are in the state forest right beside the state park (all the primitive sites are free). You will drive past the State Park entrance and the very next road (boat ramp rd) is where these sites are.This particular one is all the way down the boat ramp road and to the right of the ramp. Easy peasy.

    We went on a Sunday and now that the summer season has begun, the weekends are pretty crowded. My advice would be to go during the week or get there early on a weekend. The week would be more private and quieter (and better,IMO) with less campers/people out there.

    Let me know how your trip goes! This is handsdown one of our favorite places to camp and explore!

  4. Thank you so much for the advice :) Yay for camping!

    (although, might have to wait this heat wave out a bit & see if it gets any better!)