United States » Gator Hole

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Rated 2.6/5 stars (220 ratings)

Overview Location & Specifics Conditions Resources Nearby Systems  
Portions of the following information were taken from Florida Geological Survey Bulletin 66.

From the intersection of SR 71 and CR 164 north of Marianna, travel east on CR 164 approximately 1.7 miles to the intersection with Hunter Fish Camp Road. Turn south (right) onto Hunter Fish Camp Road and travel approximately 0.5 miles to the intersection with Lamar Drive. Turn west (right) onto Lamar Drive and travel approximately 0.17 miles to the boat ramp. Gator Spring is located on the east side of Merritt’s Mill Pond, across the lake from the boat ramp.

Description - Gator Spring discharges from a vertical fissure at the base of a 15 ft high limestone wall along the east side of Merritt’s Mill Pond. The bottom half of the fissure is inundated with clear waters of Merritt’s Mill Pond. A slight flow can be seen coming from the fissure. No spring pool exists, and spring water discharges directly into Merritt’s Mill Pond. In the vicinity of the fissure, the mill pond has a sand bottom with some aquatic vegetation. Above the fissure on the limestone wall are lush green ferns and other plants, all under a dense hardwood canopy. Land above the spring on the east side of the mill pond rises steeply to elevations up to 50 ft above the pond. Merritt’s Mill Pond is a 5 mile long, 500 ft wide impounded spring run.
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Latitude: 30.77702
Longitude: -85.167178
Coordinate System:
Maximum Depth: 42'
 Cave Diving
 Cavern Diving
 Open Water Diving
Merritts Mill Pond
Date Submitter Visbility Remarks
9/28/2011 David Dewberry 5' - 70' Nasty entrance due to mud,hydrilla,and a solid mat of green gunk on the surface. Water temp. uncomfortably warm in the pond and front portion of the cave. After getting back in the cave the passage drops into the 30' range, temp drops to the usual 69 degrees, and the vis. was very good. No noticable flow. Very interesting sculpted formations,lots of fossils, some bones, and saw a number of broken turtle shells as previously mentioned by Matt. Dusty exit but could always visually see the line. Not somewhere I would dive on a regular basis but certainly will dive here again.
10/30/2010 Louis ? We didn't dive it, but lots of vegetation on the surface. Looks like fun.
8/21/2010 Kim Mace 15' What an eerie place! Big temperature fluctuations and catfish, with little viz (and virtually none after we silted it near the dry portion of the cave). Had a short and silty dive.
7/18/2010 Mathew Bull 50-60' Flow is miniscule, but does eventually clear the silt you kicked up on entry enough to allow some vis on the way back. Dove to the "T" and back, good dive, most of the turtle shells have now been busted up in there... even the really cool punchbowl sized one :(
6/14/2009 David Todd 30' After the storm we kayaked to Gator Hole, erie place maybe because of the name, barely had our 30' vis, meet our new friend for the first time Mr. Silt Monster, dropped vis to about 10' about 80' in, so we turned and burned.
5/3/2009 Mathew Bull 40-50' Very mild flow, enough to keep the dust heading out when it gets unsettled. Fun dive.
4/5/2009 Mathew Bull 30' Little positive flow, enough to notice. Visibility was good except where the catfish were darting around. Very interesting dive.
12/2/2008 Ginger not too good The vis is pretty crap until the 'drop off' at which point it finally clears up... except the bottom which remains messy from all the catfish.
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Description Type Date Author Remarks
 System Map Map
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