We started our day of paddling around 10AM and were surrounded by Florida's beauty immediately. My son and I launched our Perception Caster 11.5's and a friend rented a canoe from the fine people at King's Landing. Launch fees were $10 per yak and the canoe rental was $30 and included a ride back to your car from the Wekiva Marina (1014 Miami Springs Road, Longwood, FL 32779) some 8 miles downstream.
Rock Springs pours from a partially submerged cave and does not make the typical headwater lagoon or pool. The spring flows immediately into a stream which is partially diverted through Kelly Park, Apopka, FL which is invaded on weekends by hundreds of tubers. Our journey began just below Kelly Park and was free from tubers but there are numerous kayaks and canoes on the weekend. King's Landing is closed on Friday and therefore access to the springs is restricted.
Rock Springs is truly a beauty to behold for the entire 8 mile stretch. A gentle current keeps you moving and with frequent rest breaks we made our way to the Wekiva Marina around 4PM or so. Along the journey you'll see gators, numerous turtle species, bass, gar, catfish, numerous birds and we even watched a deer eating grasses next to the run and were able to get excellent pictures.
I listed the difficulty as moderate because of the length of the run and the need to portage on approximately 3-4 occasions. The hurricanes of 2004 really did a number on this waterway and a few trees still block the run either partially or completely. I would not recommend the run with small children unless they have completed something like what is described herein.
3 primitive camping/picnic spots are maintained along the run.
Launch fees were $10 per yak and the canoe rental was $30 and included a ride back to your car from the Wekiva Marina
From the Florida TP take 429 N to the end. Turn left on 441 and follow to S PARK AVE/CR-435. Continue to follow CR-435 to Kelly Park Rd. and go right, then go left on Baptist Camp Rd. and follow it to the end where you can park along the road at the landing.
King's Landing Canoe Rental
5722 Baptist Camp Rd
Apopka, Florida 32712
phone: (407) 886-0859