Summary of Features
From U.S. 90 in Marianna, go west on Highway 276, pass under Interstate 10, and continue on to Highway 167. Turn left and go until you pass County Road 1656. Continue on 1.1 miles to Mystery Springs Road. A gray doublewide trailer home is at the intersection. Turn left and proceed 1.4 miles on a dirt road until it and the forest on the left seem to end and there is a large "No Trespassing" sign. Turn left just before the sign onto a narrow dirt road and drive about 100 yards to the water, which is the east run of Black Spring. Proceed by boat 200-300 feet to the left (west) to the spring basin.
From Black Spring, take the west run 100 yards and go upriver about¾ mile. Look for the mouth of a small run on the left (south) just after passing a house on the north side. Do not attempt to go up this run, as it is shallow and obstructed by fallen logs. Go a short distance further upriver and bear to the left at stands of tall reeds around to the spring.
The site is a karst window or spring/sink combination adjacent to SpringLake. The karst window is oval-shaped—80 yards long, 25 yards wide, and shallow (less than one foot on date of visit during drought in February 2001) except at the two limestone openings. Water flows from a circular pool on the west end that is 70 feet in diameter and about 35 feet deep. There is a strong boil over the spring, and the limestone opening was visible amid aquatic vegetation. Water in the spring was slightly blue. There is a dock over the spring.
Water flows east from the spring into a sinkhole with intensely blue water. There appeared to be a rock shelf or ledge at the sinkhole. On date of visit, the spring water flowed fairly swiftly and tumbled over a log that had fallen across the short run. At the sinkhole, there was a perceptible circular motion of the water going underground. The sinkhole does not capture all of the water flowing from the spring. Some water flows directly into Spring Lake through the reeds north of the run before reaching the sinkhole, and a small amount also spills out the back of the sinkhole side into Spring Lake at the mouth of the shallow run mentioned above in the directions.
This karst window is unusual in that it is not an "enclosed" or self-contained spring/sink combination like Riversink, Kini, Falmouth, or Rhodes, all of which rise and fall at some distance from an above-ground river system. Double Spring is basically on the bank of Spring Lake, and its sink does not fully drain the flow from the spring. Other karst windows are places where scientists think the ground collapsed over a stretch of the aquifer, but that does not appear to be the case here. This spot along Spring Creek is more like the stretch of the Santa Fe River a mile upriver from the CR 47 bridge, where there are a string of springs and siphons in close proximity to each other along the banks of the river.
- There is a sign in the water near the karst window noting that the site is private property and no fishing is allowed. Presumably, however, one may paddle over on the navigable waterway to look at the spring and sink. The authors were asked what they were doing by a boy from the house overlooking the spring.
- There are two or three houses built on the rising land above the karst window, and docks over the spring and sink. The site appears to be used for swimming and fishing.
The authors would love to swim and dive in the attractive basins at this site, but were not made to feel welcome and probably will not try it.
- Gadsen (or Gadsden) Spring
- Springboard Spring
- Black Spring
- Mill Pond Spring
Other Nearby Natural Features
- Florida Caverns State Park
- Torreya State Park
- Falling Waters State Recreation Area
- Apalachicola National Forest
- Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve