Sat, Jun 12 | Homosassa

Explorin' The Chaz

oin your fellow FTS Explorers for a beautiful day of sun in the fun and beautiful waters of the Chassahowitzka River. We will be, kayaking, swimming, and snorkeling all along The Chaz.
Registration is Closed
Explorin' The Chaz

Time & Location

Jun 12, 2021, 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Homosassa, 8600 W Miss Maggie Dr, Homosassa, FL 34448, USA

About the Event


* Dates, times and venue subject to change.

* In Consideration of being permitted to officiate, observe, work for, or for any purpose participate in any way in this Event, for himself, his personal representatives heirs, and next of kin, acknowledges, agrees, and represents that he HEREBY RELEASES, WAIVES, DISCHARGES AND COVENANTS NOT TO SUE Florida Trail Stompers, the promoter, participants, promotional partners, advertisers, beneficiaries, owners, and lessees of the premises used to conduct this Event, and their volunteers, FTS Trail Team Members, herein referred to as “releases”, from all liability to the undersigned, his personal representatives, assigns, heirs, and next of kin for any and all loss or damage, and any claim or demands therefore on account of injury to the person or property or resulting in death of the undersigned, whether caused by the negligence of the releases or otherwise while the undersigned is officiating in observing, working for, or for any purpose participating in the Event.

WHAT: Join your fellow FTS Explorers for a beautiful day of sun in the fun and beautiful waters of the Chassahowitzka River. We will be, kayaking, swimming, and snorkeling all along The Chaz.

WHERE: Chassahowitzka River - 7 Sisters Springs

WHEN: 8am - 4pm

EVENT INFO: The Chassahowitzka Wildlife Refuge, also known as “The Chaz”, is a more secluded and lesser-known area filled with tons of natural springs and wild places to explore. There are tons of springs tucked away along the Chassahowitzka River like The Crack and the Seven Sister’s Spring. These areas are great for kayaking, swimming, and exploring any time of the year.

The Chassahowitzka River has two distinct characters. The first half of the six mile run to the Gulf of Mexico is primarily dominated by tributary creeks, each originating from very different springs environments. The western half of the river is known for tidal creeks, Oyster bars, Mangrove-populated keys and of course, vast Saltmarsh. The entire river is very shallow (1 to 4 feet deep in the channel) and generally prohibitive to larger vessels. Once in the Gulf, a good rule of thumb is that the water deepens by one foot for every mile traveled to the west. You can literally be five miles from any shore and able to stand in five feet of sea water. This particular characteristic set means that the "Chaz" remains generally unspoiled and fishing is outstanding.

The eastern three miles is surrounded by State-owned Wilderness and the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge. Most of the surrounding hardwood hammock jungle-type forest looks like the picture above. Because it is fed by multiple spring-fed tributaries, it is a favorite of casual and hardcore kayakers, spring swimmers, photographers, wildlife enthusiasts and anyone else who just loves natural Florida. In this part of the river you are likely to catch freshwater fish and some crossover species such as Largemouth Bass, Bluegill, Mangrove Snapper, and Sheepshead. Other animals likely to be seen are Egrets, Herons, Wood Storks, Red Shouldered Hawks, Manatee in the winter, Dolphins, Otters, Feral Pigs, and Buzzards. Views are generally limited in distance but beautiful and one tends to get the sense of being lost in a deep, bio-rich, jungle-like environment full of clear blue holes and river grass. The forests are dominated by Cedars, Palms, Cypress and other wetland trees like Red Maples, Hickories and Bays.

The western half of the River is more open with expansive views and fluctuating tides. Some small Hardwood Hammocks sparsely accentuate vistas over Saltmarsh, big skies, and blending horizons. Oyster bars and Mangroves support a variety of birds and land animals which like the fresh water just as well. Here you will find more saltwater fishing to be done and the predominant quarry will be the magnificent Redfish or Red Drum with a handful of inshore Drum and Snapper species, as well as Snook, for the catching.

More serious fisher persons generally find their way to the Gulf of Mexico where one will find not only the aforementioned saltwater fish but also Tarpon, Sharks, Cobia, Spanish Mackerel, Pompano, Spotted Sea Trout, and Jack Crevalle, among others cruising the "flats". In Summertime another favorite pastime here is snorkeling for Scallops, easy to catch, clean and oh! so tasty on the grill. Although not as entrancing as reefs in more southern climes, the sea floor is fascinating and you make find a Starfish, Ray, coral and Seagrass beds that go on forever.

People who come to the Chassahowitzka River generally pronounce it one of their favorite Florida rivers and can't wait to return!

FACILITIES: Office/Store - Besides being a great place to watch wildlife, the Chassahowitzka River Camp Store stocks all kinds of stuff needed for camping, fishing, snacking & amusement. It also features a local crafts/art area within the store. Here you will also find postcards & other souvenirs branded with the Chassahowitzka River Campground moniker. After visiting our camp store, no relative will ever accuse you of returning with just a "lousy t-shirt" but we have those too.

Front Deck - The spacious front deck overlooks the main lagoon where all the waterside activity occurs. To one side of it lies a natural area where feeders attract hummingbirds, bats, cardinals, titmice, & squirrels. From this point you can also see a 900+ year old cypress tree, the likes of which were logged extensively during the late 1800s. For your relaxing pleasure are ample picnic seating & a few benches. Just try to sit & not be impressed by the views & nature!

Boat House - Originally Miss Maggie's bait & fishing store, this small building & covered dock now houses the kayak & other vessels rental concession. It also is a favorite gathering place for campers & locals to catch up on happenings, as well as a wonderful sound stage because the acoustics of the lagoon in front are akin to a natural amphitheater.

Boat Ramp - Replaced & upgraded in 2010, the main boat ramp is one of the best in Citrus County. It's big enough for launching two vessels at once & features a grooved concrete surface so you never have to worry about traction. If you're a people watcher, it's also a great place to hang out & watch the amazing variety of boats & other watercraft & the associated human antics. As well, paddlers have a gently sloping sandy “beach” beside the boat ramp for easy launches.

Parking - A large paved parking lot abuts the camp store & dock/ boat ramp area. While using the boat ramp for launching is free, there is a small fee for parking a vehicle with or without a trailer. The charge for a vehicle is $5 - A vehicle w/ trailer is $7. It also features a bicycle parking rack & restrooms. Once the parking lot is full - We close down our parking area.

Playground - We are a family friendly establishment and are excited to announce our new fenced in playground. Here your littles can enjoy the day and you can enjoy some peace of mind.

WiFi Signals - Broadcasting throughout the RV camping area & the riverside dock area are WiFi signals which require codes for connections. The signal in the RV area features high download volume capability so campers can get streaming TV channels such as NetFlix.

Kayak Storage Rental - We feature a building with rental lockers for your kayak up to 18 feet long. Rent them daily, weekly or monthly; bring or buy your own lock. This way, your kayak is always close to the water and ready to launch.

Firewood - We sell large, seasoned, dry firewood bundles for your convenience.

Single kayaks - $30/Day Two person kayaks - $40/Day Mad River canoe - $40/Day Jon boats - $45/Day Paddleboards - $45/Day

FOR MORE INFORMATION: To make reservations or get general information, please call: 352-382-2200.


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