The Great Northeast Florida Blueway

Silver Springs—Ocklawaha—St. Johns

April 22, 2020

Dear Senator reader reader

As part of Earth Week, we would like to introduce you to one of Northeast Florida’s most critical waterways. A portion of it, The Ocklawaha River, was recently designated as one of America’s Most Endangered Rivers® by American Rivers. Click here to learn more.
This 217-mile blueway, fed by the great Green Swamp, begins at Lake Apopka and rambles through the Harris Chain of Lakes as part of the Ocklawaha River.
Lake Apopka
It joins the cool, clear waters of Silver Springs near Ocala, providing more than 60 percent of the Ocklawaha’s flow.
Ocklawaha Pano
The historic, winding, canopied Ocklawaha is Poet Sidney Lanier’s “sweetest water lane in the world.”
TheNaturalOcklawaha RiverPhotobyJulieO'Brien
The natural connection of this historic blueway is blocked at the Rodman Dam — creating sluggish, warm, weed-clogged waters and obstructing natural access for the manatee and native fish, such as the striped bass.
If the dam were breached, more than 150 million gallons of water per day would flow naturally from the Ocklawaha to the 100-mile St. Johns River Estuary - feeding a critical fish and shellfish nursery connected to the Atlantic.
Last Light on the St Johns

Reconnect this historic northeast blueway for people, fish and manatees.

For more information go to

To see more of the River click here.

Film courtesy of Paddle Florida.
To schedule a virtual briefing, email
Free the Ocklawaha
Free The Ocklawaha River Coalition. For a list of our members click here .
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