Description - A combination of state-owned parcels, including Lower Wekiva River State Preserve, offer recreation opportunities along the Wekiva River, Blackwater Creek and St. Johns River. Habitat varies between the dense, moist wetlands to dry, open sun-bleached swamplands.
Copyright: Florida Division of Recreation & Parks
Lower Wekiva River State Preserve
- Bordered by 18,000 acres of state-owned lands, Lower Wekiva River State Preserve is an environmentally important region in central Florida and serves as a major corridor for recreation enthusiasts and more important, wildlife. The region stretches along the Wekiva and St. Johns Rivers uniting with Ocala National Forest.
Horseback riders, backpackers, canoeists and bird-watchers find the area most rewarding. The park provides a northern access for hikers, horseback riders (horse camp available), and a southern access for hikers. Private canoe outfitters are located just west of the southern access (State Route 46) and north along Wekiva Park Drive, which parallels Wekiva River.
Nearby state parks include Hontoon Island, Blue Spring and Wekiwa Springs State Park. (Notice the different spellings for Wekiwa Springs State Park and Lower Wekiva River State Preserve.)
Recreation - Twenty miles of equestrian and hiking trails, a primitive horse camp, and a 2-mile nature trail are offered. Wildlife viewing is very good and very popular on weekends. Call the park office for details about the area's private canoe launches and outfitters.
Climate - Florida experiences mild, comfortable winters and warm to hot, humid summers. Summer Fahrenheit temperatures average in the mid to high 80's (28 - 29 Celsius). Winters are mild and dry with temperatures averaging 58 - 64 degrees Fahrenheit (14 - 18 Celsius). Precipitation for the central area averages anywhere from 56 inches to less than 52 inches per year. The region offers a great warm escape for outdoor recreation during the cold northern months. August and September are peak months of the hurricane season that lasts from June 1 through November 30.
Lower Wekiva River Preserve State Park is located nine miles west of Sanford on State Route 46. A northwest parcel is located on State Route 44.