Salt Springs are magnitude two springs with a discharge of 81.3 cubic feet per second. The springs create a wide run which travels about four miles southeast before emptying into Lake George. The high salt content of the springs provides a unique habitat for Florida aquatic life normally found on the coast, nearly 40 miles away. The unusually high salt content is the result of the water rising to the surface through ancient salt deposits. Blue crab, needlefish, and other salt water species can be seen in the clear waters of the spring. The marine life was established at the springs thousands of years ago when this portion of Florida was part of a shallow sea. When the land rose upward, the marine creatures remained there because of the salty flow from the spring.
Salt Springs Recreation Area is one the jewels of the Ocala National Forest. The recreation area is located in the lush, semi-tropical setting of central Florida. Within the recreation area is a natural spring rising from vertical fissures (cracks) from deep within the earth. The presence of potassium, magnesium and sodium salts give the waters in the spring a slight salinity. Hence the name Salt Springs.
In the early 1900s, many people came to the spring, believing it had medicinal healing powers. Today’s visitors will find Salt Springs gushing forth 52 million gallons of water daily at a constant 74° Fahrenheit. Visitors can enjoy bird watching, hiking, boating, camping, fishing, picnicking, swimming, diving and snorkeling in Salt Springs Recreation Area.