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Blue skies, clouds and trees reflect beauty into Dunns Creek State Park's Blue Pond. Pines and other native vegetation line the banks of the pond. A gopher tortoise exits the burrow. (Photo by D. Floyd) Carnivorous pitcher plants thrive at Dunns Creek State Park. (Photo by M. Paulson) Sand hill cranes are frequently seen at Dunns Creek State Park. (Photo by D. Shaw)
Dunns Creek State Park
This beautiful winter view of Dunns Creek is taken from the shores of Dunns Creek State Park. Trees reflect colorfully in the water.

History and Culture

Native Americans used this site extensively as evidenced by the fairly widespread shell mound. During the 1920s, a steamboat stop provided wood and water to citrus loaded ships. The area was also used as a post office for the towns of Pomona and Cisco. The 6,000-acre property experienced turpentining, logging, cattle ranching and farming within the last century. Located south of a sharp bend in the St. Johns River, the park was added to the state park system in October 2001. Dunns Creek forms the northern and eastern boundaries of the park. The natural communities include sand pine scrub and sand hills covered with longleaf pines and wiregrass which help protect the gopher tortoise and several other endangered and native wildlife species.

The Blue Pond picnic area sits within the sand pine forest. The information kiosk contains a trail map and information for visitors.

Picnic Pavilion

A 1.5-mile hiking and bicycling trail leads visitors from the parking lot to the pristine waters of Blue Pond, a sinkhole lake, where visitors enjoy a small picnic area with shelter, picnic tables and grill. A waterless composting toilet is available.

Visitors enjoy a trail ride by horseback on a sunny day. The oak hammock provides a shaded riding trail.

Multi-use Trail

Dunns Creek State Park offers many miles of hiking, bicycling and equestrian trails. There are four marked trails. All trails start on the Yellow trail. The trail head is located at the Blue pond picnic area. The trails vary in length from a short 10-minute walk to a full two-hour hike (recommended for experienced hikers). Since hikers, bicyclists and equestrians share the trails, please be courteous of other visitors.

Alligators are common in all fresh water habitats in Florida.

Two Alligators

Two alligators sun themselves on a fallen tree off the banks of the Dunns Creek River. The trees are green with fresh spring foliage.

Fire is crucial to the plants and animals in this ecosystem.

Prescribed Fire

Prescribed fire is an important part of managing natural areas. Fire is crucial to many Florida habitats, helping to maintain a wide range of plant and animal life. However, while fire is important, wildfire is hard to manage and can be very destructive. Prescribed burning also helps better manage fire. It reduces the potential for wide-spread destruction.

White-tailed deer are common at Dunns Creek. (Photo by Tiffany Troup)

White-tailed deer

Wildlife viewing on the trails varies with the natural community. Visitors may see white-tailed deer or a variety of other wildlife, such as sand hill crane, southeastern kestrel, hawks, fox and various water and wading birds.