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Florida State Parks

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USA Parks
North Central Region
Lake Talquin State Park
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Manatee mother and her young show scars from boat propellers
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14850 Jack Vause Landing Road
Tallahassee, Florida   32310

Phone: 850-922-6007
In 1927 the Jackson Bluff Dam was constructed on the Ochlockonee River to produce hydroelectric power. The waters held back by the dam formed Lake Talquin, which now offers outstanding recreational opportunities. Catch largemouth bass, bream, shellcracker, and speckled perch. Visitors can enjoy nature walks, picnicking, boating, and canoeing. Nature lovers will enjoy the rolling hills and deep ravines with forests of pines and hardwoods where they may spy wild turkeys, bald eagles, ospreys, and deer. To reserve the picnic pavilion for a special gathering, please call at least two weeks in advance. The pavilion is reserved on a first-come-first-served basis.
History of the Area
In 1971, approximately 20,000 acres of uplands and 10,000 acres of lake bottom were donated by the Florida Power Corporation to the State of Florida to form Lake Talquin State Recreation Area. The waters that now cover Lake Talquin?s floodplain are shallow except along the old channel of the river. The abundance of dead trees and stumps scattered about are reminders of the rich floodplain forest that once covered the area before the lake was formed.
Annual Entrance Passes can be purchased at all park ranger stations and museums. If you require immediate use of your pass, this is the best option. Passes can be purchased during regular business hours 365 days a year. Please call the park in advance to ensure availability. Those who are eligible for discounted or free passes may use this method to receive their pass. Annual Entrance Passes may be purchased online by visiting the FLORIDA STATE PARKS ANNUALENTRANCE PASSES web page.
The park offers a variety of boating options for visitors. There is a boat ramp available, allowing guests to bring their own watercrafts and explore the lake at their leisure. Fishing boats are particularly popular due to the abundance of fish in the area such as largemouth bass, striped bass, speckled perch etc., making it an ideal spot for anglers. Canoeing and kayaking opportunities also abound with rentals being offered nearby outside the park's premises.

Enjoy fishing for largemouth bass, striped bass, crappie and catfish. Boat ramps are available for easy water access. The reservoir also houses bluegill and shellcracker fish species. Fishing from the shoreline or a canoe is another popular option among visitors.

Lake Talquin State Park is an excellent location for private parties, family reunions, weddings and receptions. The picnic pavilion, with a view of the lake in the background, seats approximately 100 people. To the side of the pavilion, under a separate roof, are two barbecue " pits" -- made of brick and raised for convenience and ease during cooking. Normal operating hours are from 8:00am - sundown. However, we are pleased to make this facility available for your after-hours occasions. Reservations may be made two weeks in advance of date needed, and is reserved on a first-come, first-serve basis. Due to the popularity of this facility, we suggest you call for a reservation as soon as possible.
- Bear Creek Trail: A 5.6-mile loop trail, moderately trafficked with a variety of terrain including forested areas and lake views; suitable for all skill levels.

- Fort Braden Trails East Loop: Approximately 3 miles long, this trail offers scenic overlooks of Lake Talquin and is known for its diverse plant life; rated as moderate difficulty due to some steep sections.

- High Bluff Trailhead - West Loop: This challenging hike covers roughly 4.1 miles through dense forests along the western edge of Lake Talquin State Park; features several elevation changes making it more suited to experienced hikers.

- Coe Landing Campground Hiking Pathway: An easy-to-navigate pathway that stretches about half a mile from the campground area towards beautiful lakeside vistas at Coe's Landing on the eastern side of park grounds.

-Fort Braden Trails Middle Section : Covering approximately two-and-a-half-miles in length, this section connects both east and west loops providing an extended hiking experience across varying terrains within state park boundaries

-Torreyea Nature Preserve Side Trip : Although not directly part of main trails system ,this nearby preserve provides additional exploration opportunities over less than one mile stretch featuring rare Torreya trees native only to Florida Panhandle region

-Lake Overstreet Trail Connection (off-site): Not located inside Lake Talquin State Park but close by at Alfred B Maclay Gardens State Park offering another five-plus-mile round trip option showcasing lush greenery around tranquil waterscape settings
Bicycling enthusiasts can explore the Bear Creek Tract, offering a 9-mile loop of moderate difficulty. Be cautious on uneven terrain.

The Fort Braden Trails are another option for cyclists with three loops totaling over 12 miles. Watch out for roots and rocks.

High Bluff trail is less challenging but still requires attention due to occasional sandy patches that could cause slips or falls.

Remember, all trails share space with hikers so be respectful and alert at all times to avoid accidents.

Helmet use is strongly recommended as safety should always come first when enjoying these natural surroundings by bike.

Lastly, ensure your bicycle's condition before embarking on any ride; flat tires or faulty brakes may lead to mishaps in this wilderness setting.

The park offers a variety of birding opportunities, with over 100 species to spot. It features diverse habitats such as hardwood forests and marshes that attract different types of birds. Birdwatchers can see bald eagles, ospreys, herons and many other waterfowl along the shoreline or from designated observation areas. The best time for bird watching is during fall migration season when numerous songbirds pass through.

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Area Accommodations (over 20 miles away)
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Sweet Magnolia Inn - Saint Marks, FL
BBs / Inns
Our historic inn is located in historic Saint Marks, one of the oldest settlements in North America. First settled in 1527, Saint Marks is a historic little city at the confluence of the Wakulla and St. Marks Rivers. Surrounded by the natural beauty of the Saint Marks National Wildlife Refuge, it is located just 20 miles south of Tallahassee.
24.4 miles from park*
Nearby Hotels

15 miles west of Tallahassee on State Road 20 on Jack Vause Landing Road.

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Florida State Parks