Continuing on our trek to do the Hillsborough County Hiking Spree, we headed over to Lithia Springs Park this week. First, we visited the spring - it's beautiful - crystal clear water - a cool day (very few people in the water) - although the water levels appeared pretty low. We walked around a portion of the fenced swimming area. There is a major portion of the swimming area to the right of this photograph - but the sun was coming straight at the camera (late afternoon) so I aimed the camera down river.
This spring is the major attraction for this park. The natural spring flows year round with cool, clean water into the Alafia River. Wikipedia states "The spring, officially known as Lithia Spring Major, is located 500 feet from the Alafia River, into which it discharges an average of 35 million gallons of water per day." As with most all springs in Florida, the water is a refreshing 72 degrees year round.
At this time of year, the water is shallow, clear and a green tint. On weekends (particularly during the summer), the swimming area is filled to capacity. There is a rope across this ends the swimming area just behind the sign shown below.
At the end of the area is a fenced off spring - you can see the hole where the water comes up near the bottom of this photograph.
Here's a better view of the actual spring where the water comes up and the fish are all hanging out. Several varieties of fish are swimming around.
This park does have a campground that is available on a first come basis (no reservations). The entrance fee is $2.00 (similar to many other parks in Hillsborough County).