“I have been absolutely terrified every moment of my life – and I have never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do.” – Georgia O’Keeffe
Now if that’s not a powerful quote, I’m not sure what is. Fear. A very human experience that commonly can halt a person’s growth but also be a fantastic motivator to push us into territories unknown. In this case, O’Keeffe’s words seem to meld well with Green Springs Park in Deltona, FL. Wouldn’t say the park itself is remotely scary. Quite the opposite, it was a great oasis to find. Reminded me of something out of Alice in Wonderland meets Avatar in the backwoods of Florida. Okay, that might be a little scary. But to think without a small risk of driving into the unknown park entrance, down that unknown road (unknown to me), I wouldn’t have know about its existence.
After finding a parking space in the small dirt lot out front, a couple sidewalks lead to a pavilion and some restrooms. Down the path a bit more were a few more dirt paths, some leading into the woods, hiking trails, the playground, and then the main spring (pictured above).
According to the posted signage, Green Springs Park has been a popular tourist attraction since the 1880s. I’m sure the definition of popular is relative with the Space Coast and Disney World somewhat close by. Regardless, Green Springs Park was known for striking its visitors as exotic and strange. A guidebook even described its waters as “green as the greenest paint.” From a geological standpoint, the once described “bottomless” spring, actually has lateral vents and a widening decent that reaches down to a 76-foot deep, silt-covered limestone floor.
Algae and sulphur affect the spring’s color, and when the spring is running, its waters join to a small creek that drains into Lake Monroe. The spring is reported to have been frequented by “Florida natives”, “Seminole War soldiers”, and “Cornelius Taylor,” who in the 1840’s offered bottled water and promises of good health, which is what drew visitors to the spring for decades to come. What is it with Florida and our fountains of youth and magical healing waters?!
Just past the main spring, are where the hiking trails continue on. Check the website linked below for a trail map, as this park serves as a trailhead for a couple main hiking trails. It’s eerie in a beautiful way as the trails in this park seem to be covered under the tree canopy. There are winding creeks, small boardwalks, and bridges throughout the trails.
If you’re in the mood for exploring a park that’s a little off the beaten trail, definitely go to Green Springs Park. As a native Floridian, I know better than to visit during the hottest parts of summer when the humidity is highest and the mosquito’s are at their prime. So if you do, go prepared with water, and obligatory bug spray (which might be pointless with Florida bugs the size of your face). *scratches mosquito bite on forehead*
I will add, there are “No Swimming” signs posted around the spring, but there were several people jumping off of the surrounding tree’s into the water.
Momentarily feared for that guy’s spine as he jumped in the water from the 25 foot tall tree above (out of frame), but it definitely made for a great photo and he was fine.
Entrance is Free
Hours are sunrise to sunset
Address: 994 Enterprise/Osteen Road, Enterprise