Jackson Blue Spring
The picturesque Merrit’s Mill Pond starts with a mighty spring – Jackson Blue Spring. This spring emits approximately 1 271 l of lucid water every second.
Length of cave
Depth of cave
Map of the site
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Geology and description of Jackson Blue Spring
Jackson Blue Spring has formed in Lower Oligocene limestone, Suwannee Limestone – Marianna Limestone Formations.
This powerful spring now is inundated, some 3 m from the bank. The spring pool is 73 by 71 m large, maximum depth is 5 m. In the spring went is exposed the limestone rock and a comparatively slight boil is seen above the vent.
Through the spring vent one can access an impressive underwater cave system – Spring Cave of Jackson Blue Cave – which is 15,436 m long (2018). Please, always remember – cave diving is a high risk affair!
This enormous spring forms a head of a fairly large artificial lake – Merrit’s Mill Pond. Further along the banks of pond there are other, smaller springs: Shangrila Springs, Indian Washtub Spring, Twin Caves Spring, Holeintherock Spring, Hidey Hole, Lamar’s Landing and Gator Spring. After a dam the stream, that has been created by this array of mighty springs, falls in Chipola River.
Earlier Jackson Blue Spring was a first magnitude spring, f.e. in 2003-2006 its mean output was 3,879 l/s. Lately, though, its flow has decreased: in 2011-2023 its mean discharge was 1,271 l/s, thus it is well below the threshold of first magnitude springs.
The spring stream was powerful enough to create a sizeable river that was used for canoe travel by the native people.
The first dam in this stream was built during the 1830ies, then the next one in 1840ies. The Merrit’s Mill Pond was created with a larger dam in its present site in 1866, stopping the mill on the previous dam and, rightfully, causing the anger of the owner of the first mill. Few years later the dam was enlarged, creating the mill pond in its present size.
The Merrit’s Mill Pond has been a publicly accessible recreation site for many decades.
Visitors enjoy a refreshing swim (the spring is included in the swimming area), boating or fishing in the unusually lucid water of the spring and Mill Pond as well as fishing. It is possible also to dive in the gorgeous spring, if the diver checks in before (1., 2.).
There is another Blue Spring in Jackson County – a smaller spring not too far, in the Florida Caverns State Park.
- Blue Springs Recreation Area, Jackson County. Accessed on August 13, 2023.
- Jackson Blue, CaveDiving.com. Accessed on August 13, 2023.
- Summary of Existing Data – Jackson Blue Springs (Jackson Co.) (PDF file). Accessed on August 13, 2023.
- Merritt’s Mill Pond History, Chipola Divers. Accessed on August 15, 2023.
- USGS 02358795 JACKSON BLUE SPRING NR MARIANNA, FL, USGS. Accessed on August 27, 2023.
Powerful natural freshwater springs belong to the most fascinating monuments of nature. Even more exciting is the diversity of unusual springs – mineral springs, hot springs, submarine springs as well as the unusual black smokers. Especially beautiful are such natural rarities as travertine, silica, or salt terraces created by warm and hot springs and, especially, geysers.
The United States of America is one of the largest countries in the world and offers a wide array of diverse attractions: many are unsurpassed in the world. Highlights of the United States are cliffs, canyons, and rock formations, several impressive downtowns of cities with numerous skyscrapers as well as a rich array of geothermal features, and the giant forest of California.
Florida is the tropical paradise of the mainland United States. Over the last century, it has experienced fabulous changes, turning from a forgotten, swampy badland into a densely populated and rich land. Highlights of Florida include the architecture of the late 19th and 20th centuries as well as its giant springs and caves.
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