Titusville Outdoors

PADDLING LOCATIONS

In the Titusville Florida Area
Page Two
Titusville Outdoors

Immediately to the west of Titusville is the St. John's River floodplain, a vast grassy savannah interspersed with palm hammocks and stands of cyprus. Through this vast wetland plain meanders the St. John's River itself and it's associated lakes, ponds and creeks, providing a variety of backwater paddling opportunities. Draining into the St John's from the west is the Econlockhatchee River, a designated canoe trail and scenic river. Just outside of Titusville itself are Fox and South lakes conected by a canal. All of theses locations offer good paddling as well as opportunities to observe our incredible biodiversity from the seat of a kayak or canoe.

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Photo by Rick Shafer of A Day Away Kayak Tours.

Fox and South Lakes
Fox Lake Park at 4400 Fox Lake Road; Fox lake is a freshwater lake just outside the Titusville city limit and is the closest freshwater paddling site to Titsuville. Putting in at Fox Lake also provides paddling access to South Lake via a canal connection. The shoreline and the surrounding marshes provide habitat to all sorts of wading birds and other wildlife associated with Florida freshwater marshes.

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Photo by Cary Salter.

Six Mile Creek
The Six Mile Creek boat ramp can be found on S.R. 46 about 3.5 miles west of I-95. The creek flows out of the Buck Lake Conservation Area from a small lake and wet prairie that forms the headwaters of the creek. You can paddle upstream for about 3/4 of a mile before the creek narrows dramatically and is blocked by logs and low overhanging vegetation. Heading south from the put in takes you to Salt Lake, Loughman Lake, and eventually to the St. John's River. Wading birds, Black neck stilts, redwing blackbirds, and many waterfowl, and other wildlife species associated with the St. Johns floodplain can be found here.

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Photo by Dean Richard Pettit.

St John's River
The St. John's River can be accessed from three places just west of Titusville. The East Orange County Boat Ramp off of State Road 50, about 5 miles West of I-95, Hatbill Park at the end of Hatbill Road within the Seminole Ranch Conservation Area, and C.S. Lee park off of State Road 46, about 8 miles West of I-95. To get to Hatbill Park (a County park) go west on SR46, turn left 4.1 miles west of the I95 intersection (exit 81) and SR46. Look for signs for Loughman Lake Lodge and Seminole Ranch Conservation Area. Hatbill Park is at the very end of this winding road.

The St. John's River is Florida's longest river and one of the few river's worldwide that flow South to North. Here it meanders through a vast grassmarsh floodplain dotted with hammocks and interspersed with creeks. Certain areas within the Seminole Ranch Conservation Area have a unique plant community supported by connate saltwater which flows from small springs near Harney and Puzzle lakes. The salinity of small lakes in the area approaches one-third that of sea water. Many salt-tolerant and marine-dwelling organisms present here are not found anywhere else in the St. Johns River. Wildlife found along the St. John's includes migratory and residential wading birds, while white pelicans, southern bald eagles, roseate spoonbills and sandhill cranes sometimes are sighted. Other wildlife includes bobcats, otters, deer, and alligators. On the main channel, always be aware of the presence of powerboats and airboats.

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Here's the SR-50 Launch Site.

Here's the Hatbill Park Launch Site.

Here's the SR-46 Launch Site.

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Photo by Dean Richard Pettit.

Econlockhatchee River
The Econlockhatchee River is one of the last unspoiled rivers in Central Florida, and can be paddled in three sections.

The first section (9 miles), which starts at State Road 50 west of Titusville can be difficult, but is probably the most beautiful section to paddle under a junglelike canopy of cyprus. Water levels are highly variable on the Econ, as it is called by locals. Expect lots of portages at low water. At high water, the current is strong and the actual course of the river is hard to determine. There are lots of sharp bends and getting lost afloat among half submerged trees is a distinct possibilty and river reading skills are an absolute necessity. Strainers should be expected and of course, avoided. At middle water levels this can be an absolutly beautiful paddle. Call Hidden River Park at (407) 568-5346 and ask for Don for river conditions. The park also provides rentals and a shuttle service for at least sections one and two.

The second (and the most popular) section begins at County Road 419 near Oviedo where the river opens up to reveal 15 foot high sandy banks lined with oaks and cabbage palms. Check for wildflowers in this area. There may be weed jams in this area, portages are difficult in some sections due to the high banks. there are places along this stretch to pull out and picnic and plenty of wildlife to be seen. This is considered a classic Central Florida paddle. Take out for this section will be at Snow Hill Road, and shuttle services can be arranged through Hidden River Park.

Below the Snow Hill Road bridge, the banks are lower, while cypress trees and clusters of cabbage palms line the banks. About 6 miles later the river as the tree-lined banks give way to pasture land and the marshes of the St. John's River. Stay in the boat here as much of the land is in private hands. About 3 miles later, the Econ enters the St. Johns. Turn left once entering the St John's and paddle 1.5 miles to the S.R. 46 bridge, which is clearly visible from the mouth of the Econ. The takeout is at the northwest corner of the bridge. This last section from Snow Hill Road to the takeout at State Road 46 totals about 11 miles. Care should be taken on the St John's due to the possibilty of heavy powerboat and airboat traffic.

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Photo by Lauralee Thompson.

Hi, feel free to email any questions you may have concerning hiking trails, or any other outdoor subject in the Titusville area,
Thank you,

EMAIL; Dean Richard Pettit

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