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Colt Creek State Park

16000 State Rd 471
Lakeland, Florida 33809

(863) 815-6761


Description
Colt Creek State Park was purchased from the Overstreet Family in May of 2006. This 5,067 acre park nestled within the Green Swamp Wilderness Area and named after one of the tributaries that flows through the property was opened to the public on January 20, 2007. For over 60 years this property was managed as a cattle ranch by the Overstreets. Past activities on the land included beef cattle production, lime rock mining, timber harvesting and turpentining. Comprised mainly of pine flatwoods, cypress domes and open pasture land, this piece of natural Florida wilderness is home to many animal species including the American bald eagle, sherman's fox squirrel, gopher tortoise, white-tailed deer, wild turkey and bobcat. The park offers numerous recreational opportunities including hiking, horseback riding (with your own horse), biking, picnicking and nature study. Two picnic areas with a total of four pavilions, two restrooms and a fishing/observation dock are available. Three of the pavilions are available for rental. Freshwater Fishing is also a popular activity. Visitors can fish either from the bank or a small boat such as a canoe, kayak or Jon boat. Gas powered motors are not permitted however electric trolling motors are. For overnight enthusiasts, both a primitive backpack camp and a primitive youth camp are available.




Hours of Operation:
The park is open from 8:00 a.m. until sundown, 365 days a year.

Admission Fee:

$3.00 per vehicle. Please use the honor box to pay fees. Correct change is required. Limit 8 people per vehicle.

$2.00 Pedestrians, bicyclists, extra passengers, passengers in vehicle with holder of Annual Individual Entrance Pass.

Primitive Youth Camp Fees:

$5.00 per adult, per night.

$1.00 per child, per night.


View Larger Map 

Activities:

BICYCLING

Bicycling is currently permitted only on unmarked dirt (service) roads. Single track bike trails are in the development stage. Due to the soft sand, mountain bikes are recommended.

CAMPING, YOUTH

Three primitive youth camp sites are available for organized youth groups. Each site accommodates up to 20 people. The camp is nestled in an oak hammock with a fair amount of shade. The sites are designed for tents and one small supply trailer per group. Pets other than service animals are not permitted. The primitive camp has no running water or electricity. Each site offers two picnic tables, lantern holders and campfire ring with benches. Campsites share one portable toilet. One adult chaperone 21 years of age or older is required per 10 children. Reservations are required and can be made up to 11 months in advance by calling the park at (863) 815-6761.

FISHING

Freshwater bank fishing is available at three different lakes in the park. The lakes range in size from 2 – 25 acres and vary in depth from 12 – 70 feet. The lakes were dug in the 1990s as part of a lime rock mining operation. Freshwater species such as largemouth bass, bluegill, bream, shell cracker and catfish can be caught. Largemouth bass must be released unharmed but angler’s are permitted to keep up to six catfish and 12 pan fish (bluegill, bream, shell cracker) per person per day. Canoes, kayaks and small jon boats can be carried down to the water and hand launched. Gas powered motors are not-permitted but electric trolling motors can be used. A fishing licensemay be required.

HIKING/NATURE TRAIL

Visitors can hike or horseback ride on more than 12 miles of marked trails that meander through and around several of the parks natural communities including pine flatwoods, cypress domes and hardwood hammocks. A portion of the trail skirts the edge of pastureland which also provides a scenic vista. Visitors can sometimes get a glimpse of white-tailed deer, bobcat, fox squirrel and bald eagles. Be sure to prepare for Florida’s ever-changing climate and dress appropriately with proper hiking shoes. Don’t forget sunscreen, hat, water and insect repellent. Be sure to pick up a trail map when you enter the park and please stay on the marked trails.

HORSE/EQUESTRIAN TRAIL

Visitors can hike or ride horseback on more than 12 miles of marked trails that meander through and around several of the parks natural communities including pine flatwoods, cypress domes and hardwood hammocks. A portion of the trail skirts the edge of pastureland which also provides a scenic vista. Visitors can sometimes get a glimpse of white-tailed deer, bobcat, fox squirrel and bald eagles. Be sure to prepare for Florida’s ever-changing climate and dress appropriately with proper hiking shoes. Don't forget sunscreen, hat, water and insect repellent. Be sure to pick up a trail map when you enter the park and please stay on the marked trails. Negative Coggins test required for each horse.

WILDLIFE VIEWING

Beginning in January 2007 and ending in December 2007 a monthly survey of birds and butterflies was conducted by both the Lake Region Audubon Society and the North American Butterfly Association. At the end of the year long survey, volunteers documented approximately 149 species of birds and 79 species of butterflies. So be sure to bring your binoculars along and pick up a checklist of birds and butterflies at the information kiosk (also available for downloading). You never know what you might see at Colt Creek State Park.