Springs Fever: A Field & Recreation Guide to 500 Florida Springs.
2nd Edition by Joe Follman and Richard Buchanan

Dykes Spring
Jackson County
 
Summary of Features
Scale—2nd magnitude (est) 
Scenery—Excellent 
How Pristine?—Heavy algae growth, otherwise very natural 
Swimming—Fine, excellent snorkeling 
Protection—unknown 
Crowds—Small-none 
Access—Very good, by boat only 
Facilities—None 
Safety—Very good 
Scuba—Unknown 
Cost—Free
 

 Directions
Accessible via small boat.  From the center of Marianna on U.S.90, go north on Jefferson Street (State Road 167—the same turn as for FloridaCavern State Park) and proceed about 1.5 miles to the bridge over the ChipolaRiver. Put in and go downstream about 6 miles.  The mouth of the clear-waterspring run is easy to spot on the east side of the river.  Ascendrun 75 yards to springhead.  GPS coordinates:  N30.44.764; W85.12.908

For maps, driving directions, satellite imagery, and topographicrepresentations as well as weather conditions at this spring, go to GregJohnson's informative "Florida Springs Database" web site at the followingaddress:  http://www.ThisWaytothe.Net/springs/floridasprings.htm#Florida

Spring Description
Dykes Spring forms a roughly circular pool that was about 80 feet indiameter on date of visit in March 2004.  Water flows from a largelimestone fissure that is about 8 feet wide and 40-50 feet long. There is a large (6-8 feet in diameter) boil on the surface at the backend of the fissure, which was als o wider tha n the rest of the fissure androunded.  The depth of the fissure was not measured but appeared tobe at least 20 feet.  Several types of fish were observed in the pool, r angin g in size from less than an inch to 15 inches long.  Water inthe pool was clear and pale/milky blue.  The bottom was mostly sandyexcept at the edges of the limestone fissure, and there were algae on thebottom and on the submerged trees.  Movement in the spring pool raisedclouds of silt.

There is a backwater swamp/wetland area behind the spring; it flowsinto the top of the spring basin in times of high water.  The springcreates a serpentine run that is 20-30 feet wide and 75 yards long. The depth in the run was 5-6 feet on date of visit in early March 2004,but only about 3 feet 3 weeks later (there had been no measureable rainin the interim).  There is heavy algae growth in the spring, in vividgreen mats and strings/filaments.  The clear water of the spring andits run present a contrast to the darker water in the river.  Banksrose up from the spring from 3-10 feet in an area of hardwood bottomlandforest.  Dried algae on the banks extending 3-5 feet above the springsuggested that the water had recently been much higher.

Use/Access
A sign at the spring says camping is not allowed.  There is arope swing at the pool.  A dirt road looped by the spring from theeast.

Personal Impressions
Dykes is a very attractive spring, although the algae growth is likelymuch greater in the summer.  It was a great place to cool off andhave a swim.
JF was so irked by the large tree that had fallen into the spring thathe spent 15 minutes lugging/lurching it out of the spring fissure. The tree was about 35 feet long.  He knows he should not have donethis (one should let nature take its course), but could not restrain himself.

Nearby Springs

Other Nearby Natural Features
Florida Caverns State Park
Three Rivers State Park
Falling Water State Park
Torreya State Park
Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve