Launch at Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve State Park on the northeastern side, adjacent to the entrance of Betz-Tiger Point Preserve. Follow Pumpkin Hill Creek northwards. At the first river branch, where the river branches into northeast and northwest segments, continue on the northwest branch. The second branch in the river, where the river widens to the north and also continues on towards the southwest, marks your turnaround point.
Turn around and follow the river back to Pumpkin Hill Launch Point. This route takes the average paddler approximately three hours round-trip.
Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve State Park
30º 29´ 14´´ -81º 29´ 33´´
12100 Pumpkin Hill Road, Jacksonville, Florida 32226
30º 29´ 58´´ -81º 29´ 33´´
This area is almost impassable at low-tide, and you may need to port your kayak over particularly shallow areas at low-tide. If you hit a shallow area or sandbar, back up a couple feet into deeper water, then paddle to the part of the creek where the water runs the quickest. Fast-running water generally indicates the deepest part of the creek, and counter intuitively, may be near the shoreline. Currents are strong – be ready for a workout.
Points of Interest:
This remote, quiet trail takes you along the eastern side of Betz-Tiger Point Preserve. Wildlife is abundant here, and ranges from the threatened American alligator to the endangered wood stork. This area serves as a nursery for juvenile shrimp, and as you paddle along you may see them leaping out of the water to escape fish that are feeding on them. You may even have a few shrimp and fish jump right into your kayak, especially at low tide, when shrimps’ avenues of escape are limited by the shallow water. This is an important feeding area for birds, including the Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, and Snowy Egret.