38 miles south of Tallahassee in the town of Sopchoppy on the banks of the Ochlockonee and Dead Rivers is the quiet 543 acre Ochlockonee State Park consisting of a beautiful pine woods forest providing a home to a variety of plants and animals, most notably white squirrels, a color variation of the Eastern gray squirrel.
Another species of squirrel, the Sherman’s Fox squirrel, also resides here but tends to stay in the more forested areas. Other animals that call the park home include deer, bobcat, Florida Black bears, Gopher tortoises and a variety of birds. This is by no means a complete list, but does demonstrate some of the diversity that the park offers.
Visitor’s have a variety of activities to choose from including swimming, fishing, canoeing, hiking or enjoying a leisurely picnic at the Tide Creek picnic shelter. A limited number of canoes and kayaks are available for rent at the park. Those looking to spend a few days can choose to stay at one of the park’s 30 campsites, all of which are equipped with water and electric. A youth campsite is also available on the Dead River.
At the time of this visit, mid-August, the heat and humidity were too high for exploring the hiking trails and recent heavy rains had caused the rivers to swell so our stay was shorter than planned. A visit to this park might be better during a milder time of year, otherwise prepare accordingly.
Ochlockonee State Park is located 4 miles south of the town of Sopchoppy on Hwy 319. Learn more about Ochlockonee by visiting the Florida State Park’s website. While in the area, be sure to visit Edward Ball Wakulla Springs State Parkin nearby Wakulla Springs.