Fall is here and that means it's a gtreat time to get out on the trails and see all kinds of wildlife, fall flowers, and leaves changing colors. For visitors wishing to see the natural diversity that O'Leno State Park offers, explore our multi-use trails through 18 different natural plant communities shared with adjacent River Rise Preserve State Park.
With our large population of deer in the park please be mindful of the strong possibility of contact with ticks and other nuisance insects. The park sells tick repellant at the Ranger Station for your protection but be aware that this is ONLY to be applied to clothing, tents, and sleeping bags and NOT directly to skin.
Please also take the time to visit our park Nature Center with its live animals, specimens, interpretive displays, and reference books on North Central Florida wildlife and vegetation. It is open Friday - Sunday from 10:00am - 2:00pm and staffed with knowledgeable volunteers and staff to answer any questions you may have. We also have a small park museum that tells the story of the town of Leno, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), the Works Progress Administration (WPA), and the park. Though not staffed it is open daily from 9:00am until 3:00pm.
Prescribed Fire: During your visit there may be an opportunity to witness the effects of our prescribed burning program at both O'Leno and adjacent River Rise Preserve State Park, which helps stimulate plant growth by adding natural carbon to the soil, remove exotic plants, improve feeding for natural grazing animals, and open portions of the park for viewing from our 10 month growing season in North Central Florida. We hope you are able to see the positive difference made, excuse the possible smoke, and not venture into any areas that are blocked off while we conduct the prescribed burns.
We will be conducting a public workshop on Tuesday November 28th from 5:30 PM, to 8:00PM at the City of High Springs old school community center in the Santa Fe room. The address of the meeting location is 23760 NW 187th Avenue, High Springs, Fl 32643. This meeting will be to receive public input as we move forward in developing the management plan for Gilchrist Blue Spring State Park.