Magnolia Springs State Park

Magnolia Springs State ParkTrey has been camping before but last week we had our first daddy/son camping trip. Magnolia Springs is too far away for a day trip so I decided we’d take the camping gear with us. It turned out to be a great decision as Trey loved sleeping in the tent, having a fire, and being in the woods all by ourselves.

Magnolia Springs was the site of Fort Lawton, the Confederacy’s largest POW camp, which held upwards of 10,000 prisoners during the Civil War. The spring itself has crystal clear water and tons of underwater plant life which in turn hides turtles and alligators.

Camping at Magnolia Springs State ParkAfter we set up our camp site we walked a trail that passed through the Fort Lawton remnants and then up the stream to the spring. In the morning after packing up we visited to the “aquarium” and were pretty disappointed by it. There was a massive school group there and the ranger was giving a presentation about alligators. He let everyone pet a baby gator and Trey was more nervous about it this time (he did that at Crooked River State Park too). I think it was because I kept reminding him not to get to close to the spring because there were alligators in the water that could bite him – I was really hammering that point in on this trip.