Poe Springs

A designated Outstanding Florida Spring, Poe Spring Park lies along the Santa Fe River in Alachua County and is nestled among other renowned springs such as Gilchrist Blue and Ginnie. Poe is second magnitude spring located in the Suwannee River Water Management District. Like most springs along this stretch of the river, Poe is easily accessible from nearby Gainesville and High Springs. Poe Spring has long stretches of naturally shallow water, making it a perfect place for families with young swimmers and beginning divers. The second magnitude spring flows down a brief, forest-lined run before joining the tannic Santa Fe River. Although the County prohibits SCUBA diving in the park, swimmers may free dive the spring vent or explore the limestone-studded forest on one of the park’s hiking trails.

Poe Springs meets the Santa Fe River. Photo by John Moran.
Poe Springs, 2019. Photo by John Moran.
Poe Springs, 2019. Photo by John Moran.
Poe Springs meets the Santa Fe River. Photo by John Moran.
Poe Springs, 2019. Photo by John Moran.
Poe Springs, 2019.

In 2016, the Florida Legislature passed the Florida Springs and Aquifer Protection Act

As part of that law, the state of Florida developed a list of 30 springs that are either historic first-magnitude springs, or of other importance. The term Outstanding Florida Spring (OFS) refers to this list of 30 springs or spring groups. If water quality is found impaired, these springs require a Basin Management Action Plan (BMAP) to achieve water quality standards within a 20-year time frame.

Poe Springs is currently one of the six Outstanding Florida Springs or Springs Groups that is considered “not impaired”.

Science Hub

This is the location for access to data related to this spring. Below, you will find links to reports, data, as well as maps and information from the Florida Springs Institute’s Blue Water Audit project about this particular spring or spring group. 

The Blue Water Audit is a tool developed by the Florida Springs Institute to estimate and visualize the impact of human activities on the Floridan Aquifer. Using existing data from a variety of sources, the Blue Water Audit estimates nitrogen loading and groundwater withdrawals for the Florida Springs Region. These estimates are used to assign Aquifer Footprints – a Floridan Aquifer Nitrogen Footprint (water quality) and a Floridan Aquifer Groundwater Footprint (water quantity). Below are maps of the Blue Water Audit Floridan Aquifer Nitrogen footprint for the Poe Springs springshed within the Suwannee River Water Management District, as well as a map of the land use within the Poe Springs springshed. To find out more about the Blue Water Audit project and to learn how this tool was developed, visit Blue Water Audit.

* The Poe Springs Springshed extends into both the Suwannee River Water Management District and the St. Johns River Water Management District.


The Interactive Florida Springs Atlas was produced with generous support from the Fish  & Wildlife Foundation of Florida. The Community Foundation of North Central Florida supported this project through generous support for our Blue Water Audit project.

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The Wacissa Spring Group lies at the northern end of the Aucilla Wildlife Management Area in Jefferson
County and forms the headwaters of the Wacissa River. Over twenty springs form a cluster that runs
along the river. A public boat ramp allows for easy access to the core of the spring cluster. This dense
core contains Log, Thomas, Wacissa #1-4, and Acuilla springs, which together form a large bowl of fast-
flowing water. Along the run, large patches of Coontail compete with beds of Hydrilla beneath the clear
water. The combined magnitude and isolation of the Wacissa springs make the location one of the most
pristine in the state, earning the system a spot on the list of OFSs despite none of the individual springs
flowing at the first magnitude.