Springs Fever: A Field & Recreation Guide to 500 Florida Springs.
3rd Edition by Joe Follman and Richard Buchanan

Glen Spring

Alachua County

Summary of Features

  • Scale -5th magnitude 
  • Scenery - poor 
  • How Pristine? - impounded into pools, fenced, near buildings 
  • Swimming - no 
  • Protection - unknown, park along run 
  • Crowds - none 
  • Access - only for view from distance 
  • Facilities - none 
  • Safety - fair 
  • Scuba - no 

Directions (address: 2424 NW 23rd Boulevard, Gainesville)

From intersection of U.S. 441 and State Road 26 in central Gainesville, go north on U.S. 441 (also called NW 13th Street) about 2 miles. Turn west/left onto 232A/NW 23rd Avenue and proceed a short distance to parking lot of the Elks Lodge. The spring is behind the Elks building.

Spring Description

The spring is set into a hillside or ravine and forms a semicircular pool about 10 feet in diameter. Water flows form small limestone openings at a depth of about 6 feet. Water in the spring is clear and clean and there is a mild boil. The bottom is sandy and rocky. The spring and the first 150 feet of its run are surrounded by a concrete retaining wall that forms three connected and successive (i.e., end-to-end) pools. The walls and gates between the pools serve to raise the level of the water high enough for swimming. The first pool - the one surrounding the spring itself - is bell-shaped and about 18 feet long. The second pool has six sides but is roughly rectangular and has dimensions of about 25 by 65 feet. The third pool is a rectangle and is about 25 by 50 feet. This third pool has a diving board and was clearly used as a pool. The second pool may have been used as a children's wading area.

Water in the second and third pools is stagnant, green in color, and is not clear. Water flows from an unseen pipe or other opening in the third pool into the original run, which then flows through a small park area and into Hogtown Creek. The Elks building is directly adjacent to the spring and pools on one side. There is an apartment complex about 100 feet away from the spring on the other side, but the intervening area is thickly wooded and lush.


Local Springiana

According to the Gainesville Magazine, there has been a pool at Glen Spring since the 1920s.  The current structure was used until the mid-1970s, and it was always a segregated (i.e., whites only) pool.  Roy Perkins, who managed the spring from 1951 until it was sold in 1970, recalled that it was a very popular spot.  Once a week, the flow was diverted and the pool was drained and scrubbed clean (Kirkland, 2004).

Personal Impressions

The spring is a very unusual sight, hidden behind the old Elks Lodge in the middle of a developed neighborhood.

Nearby Springs

Other Nearby Natural Features

Paynes Prairie State Reserve
San Felasco Hammock State Preserve
Devil's Millhopper State Geologic Site
Poe Springs County Park
O'Leno State Park
River Rise State Park