For several years now I have been following the news about the push to Free the Ocklawaha River from the Rodman Dam, first via the Florida Native Plant Society, and later through other entities in Florida. The idea intrigued me because the Rodman Reservoir and the Kirkpatrick Dam as well as the Cross Florida Barge Canal are all intertwined with the Florida Trail. The reservoir was created when the dam was sealed off on the Ocklawaha River in the late 1960s, thus drowning multiple springs and severely altering the ecosystem. Almost since it’s creation there has been a call to restore the system.
I invited Margaret Spontak, Chair of the Free the Ocklawaha Coalition, on to talk about the history of the project and to provide insight into the coalitions goals and hopeful timeline in restoring the Ocklawaha River system. This episode is part of my greater series highlighting managed lands that cross through or are adjacent to the Florida Trail.
Music: “Breathing” by Lee Rosevere