Falmouth Spring runs 450 feet, then disappears into a wall of limestone! Allegedly the shortest river in the world, it’s also a First Magnitude Spring (>65 Million Gallons/Day). Located between Big Shoals State Park and Suwannee River State Park, Falmouth Spring is located in a small park (276 acres) known as the Falmouth Spring Recreation Area. It is managed by the Suwannee River Water Management District. There is no entrance fee and swimming is allowed.
Technically speaking, Falmouth Spring is a karst window; that is, a subterranean stream that is exposed for some distance in a depression before sinking back underground. In fact, the entire spring appears to sit in a shallow sinkhole. As you can see in the short video clip below, the entire “river” can be viewed from a single vantage point.
If not for the occasional leaf floating by, it would appear to be more like an elongated pond. With a nearly glass-smooth surface, it’s hard to believe that 160 cubic feet of water are flowing by every second. And disappearing into a limestone bluff. As if this isn’t strange enough, you could visit there and see exactly the opposite, where it flows out of the limestone bluff and disappears into the vent. Of course, that only happens when the Suwannee River is at flood stage…but it does happen.
From the parking area you’ll pass through a little picnic area, then follow a boardwalk that takes you down to the spring vent area on the left and the limestone bluff on the right. The area is heavily forested, providing plenty of shade and a beautiful backdrop. If you want to explore the recreation area further, administrative roads are open to hiking, biking and horseback riding.
Map courtesy of Suwannee River Water Management District
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