River Rise Preserve State Park is a great place for equestrians, hikers and bikers. With over 35 miles of trails surrounded by quiet forests and amazing natural features, it’s one of central Florida’s premier state parks. A huge 20 stall horse barn, campsites and miles of trails makes this the perfect place to bring your horse and ride.
Several special events are held for horse riding here each year. Competitive trail rides, endurance races and Christmas for horses makes River Rise Preserve State Park truly an equestrian paradise.
Located just six miles north of High Springs, Florida, River Rise Preserve State Park is right off of US 441 and is easy to get to from just about anywhere in the state. And for just $5 a person entrance fee and $5 a person camping fee, it’s also one of the best bargains in the Florida state park system.
The park may be home to some great horse and hiking trails, but it also holds some fantastic historical and natural features. Throughout the 1500’s until the 1700’s, this area was used as a road from St. Augustine-Americas first city-to Tallahassee. Spanish explorers used the existing Indian trail to create what was called the El Camino Real. It crossed the parks natural feature, the natural bridge, an area where the Santa Fe River disappears underground.
As more settlers arrived in the area, in 1824 the federal government commissioned plantation owner John Bellemy to build the first ever federally funded road in the United States. The dirt road followed the El Camino Real and still exists in the park today.
There are also numerous natural features within River Rise Preserve State Park. 18 distinct natural communities are home to limestone sinkholes, karst windows and of course the natural bride. Several small springs are also on the property. This area is widely researched by leading universities and scientists looking to find the answers to our planets history.
For more information about River Rise Preserve State Park and all of its wonderful amenities, programs and history, visit the website here.