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Clouds reflect in the water at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park

Clouds reflect in the water at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park. Photo: Ebyabe, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

For those who want to escape into nature, Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park provides the perfect sanctuary in which to do so.

Situated in Central Florida, about a 2 hour drive from Tampa and Orlando, the pristine 845-acre park provides a protective community for sand scrub.

One of Florida’s rarest and endangered habitats, it is home to some of the state’s most vulnerable and imperiled species of flora and fauna. This includes the Florida scrub lizard, Florida mouse, Eastern indigo snake and gopher tortoise.

While camping accommodation is non-existent and amenities are limited, the natural experience you get at the park is incredible.

Guests can enjoy a hike along a stunning nature trail or sand fire lanes of the most brilliant white sugar complexion. They can also cast a line from the shimmering lakeshore or take to the water on a kayak or canoe.

Occupying the whole of the western shore of Lake June-in-Winter, the park is also a birder’s paradise, with dozens of species calling it home.


During their time at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park, guests can enjoy several outdoor recreational pursuits.

Outlined below are just a few examples of what you can do during your time there.

Fishing and boating at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park

Spanning 3,500-acres, Lake June-in-Winter, is a beautiful freshwater lake that offers guests fabulous opportunities for fishing and paddling.

Fishing is permitted within specifically designated areas, while kayaks and canoes can be launched on the shoreline by hand.

You can choose to fish either on the shoreline or in your watercraft.

Depending on which method you decide upon, you may require a fishing license. So it is best to contact the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to ascertain if you do.

Hiking at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park

For those who enjoy hiking, the park provides plenty of opportunities to get your heart rate going.

This is especially true on the sugar sand trails and sandy fire lanes, which provide tough desert ecosystems of scrub habitat and pine flatwoods to negotiate.

If you attempt any of the trails that take you through this harsh environment then be sure to wear a hat, plenty of sunscreen and proper hiking footwear. Also bring lots of water and a cell phone for emergencies as well.

Should that sound a bit too adventurous for you, guests can tackle the much easier Tomoka Run Trail. A comparatively short trail loop, it takes you to a stream that cuts through scrub and pine flatwoods to the fringes of a bay head.

Flanked by bay trees, lush ferns and wild azaleas, along the way you will see Tannic creeks bubbling as a result of the park’s underground springs.

Picnicking at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park

The park has a lovely picnic area that resides upon an open grassy hill that looks out to Lake June-in-Winter.

While there, visitors can also choose to walk down the hill and along the edge of the shore.

You will find several picnic tables in this area and a pavilion. Although there are no operational grills.

Birding at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park

If you are into birding, the park is an exceptional destination in which to practice this hobby.

Designated as a destination that lies within the Great Florida Birding Trail’s east section, the park has six distinct natural ecosystems overall.

Collectively they house around 100 different bird species. Many of which reside within it throughout the year.

Depending on when you visit and where you go in the park, you might see the Florida scrub-jay. You may also spot the red-shouldered hawk, owls and southern bald eagle too.

Ospreys are a common spot too. While ibis, heron, pileated woodpeckers and egrets usually feed around the shoreline’s shallow waters.

Nature & Wildlife

As well as the birds, the park is home to a wide range of flora and fauna species.

The park’s landscape includes scrub, mesic flatwoods, lakes and wetlands, which provide a natural habitat for a range of animals.

This includes the likes of bobcats, black bears and otters, as well as endangered species like the gopher tortoise and Florida sand skink.

During your time at the park you can also expect to see raccoons and white-tailed deer, as well as ducks, alligators and snakes.

You are most likely to encounter this wildlife in the early mornings and the period just before and after sunset.

Pets at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park

Service animals are welcome to join you at the park. However, conditions on the presence of domestic pets do apply.

To find out more about what they are, it is worth contacting the park’s main office.

Camping at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park

Unfortunately there is no camping available at the park itself.

However, within an easy drive of it you will find several other campgrounds you can stay at. This includes the Lake Placid Campground, Camp Florida RV Resort and Cypress Isle RV Park & Marina.

Between them they offer an excellent range of accommodation options that include RV and trailer sites which come with full hookups for electricity, sewage and water. They also have rustic cabins and primitive tent sites as well as group and youth camping facilities too.

Depending on which campground you stay at, facilities may include restrooms with flush toilets and hot showers, laundry, a dump station, playground, swimming pool and convenience store.

Park Location

Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park
630 Daffodil Street
Lake Placid, FL 33852
Phone: 850.245.2157




Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park: