Alexander Springs: Crystal Clear Blue Spring Water

Published: Wednesday - 04/15/2015 - by Randy Ramsdell

My first Florida spring and camping experience was Alexander springs which turned out to be an awesome first choice because it has really good on-site camping, mountain bike trails nearby, a large swimming area and located in the Ocala National forest. The three other springs found in Ocala National forest are Jupiter springs, Salt Springs and Silver Glen each having their own special qualities and each worth visiting. Silver springs offers a unique touristy type experience which just reopened under the guidance of the state It isn't quite in the national forest but close enough.

Alexander Springs is the only first magnitude springs found in the Ocala National Forest which means it pumps out greater than eight millions gallons per day of clean clear 72 degree water. It has a 300' spring basin and this provides plenty of room to swim, snorkel and is a really good novice scuba dive experience with depths up to 30', lots of fish and an interesting spring head to explore. It is one of the best springs in Florida and there are plenty of things to do outdoor related.

When I visit Alexander Springs, I usually hit the mountain bike trails either there or drive 45 miles to Santos, which is considered an epic trail system by the Mountain Biking Association and has plenty miles to ride. The trails range from green ( easy ) to black ( hard ) and has a continuous trail in the range of 50 miles that swings between green and blue ( moderate ). It takes a while to finish and I recall my last trek down this trail took me roughly 7 hours, but I am ride kind of slow and it was like 95+ degrees. Some people complete it in about 4 hours which puts things in perspective. Don't underestimate the amount of water to bring like I did both times I completed it. It is not much fun and unsafe to ride the last few hours in the Florida sun without water. Thankfully I was caught up in a rain storm both times to cool things off.

I'll touch on the food situation but there isn't much. I think you can find a restaurant about 15 miles away which would be good for a lunch, but just bring food because not much around there.

If you want to ride some trails, snorkel, swim and/or paddleboard the cleanest water in Florida, check out Alexander springs and all the sprinĀ­gs really. Stay tuned for more articles about the Florida Springs.