St. Francis Dead River Run

The St. Francis Dead River Run traverses the river of the same name, which is a major tributary of the St. Johns River. The trail passes the ghost town of St. Francis, also formerly known as "Old Town". St. Francis was located about 20 miles south of Astor. Paddlers can see where the town used to be as pilings in the water indicate where a grand motel stood on the shores of the river.

St. Francis is one of Lake County’s 30-plus ghost towns, but quite possibly the most prolific during its heyday. A thriving port on the St. Johns River, St. Francis had its own newspaper (The Florida Facts), post office, general store, warehouse, wharves and several hundred acres of citrus. After the Big Freeze of 1894-1895, many residents abandoned the town.

Places to Stay and Things to Do Near the St. Francis / Dead River Run

St. Francis Dead River Run is about 20 miles south of Astor. The cities near that area are Altoona and Astor. Astor is known for its guided boat tours, both for fishing and just taking in the surroundings. Sparky’s Place in Astor offers unique dining at an affordable price. Fish Tales RV Resort located in Astor is a secluded canal front resort and boasts some of the most beautiful views that the St. Johns River has to offer.

Area Lodging

Astor's Florida Inn Riverside Bed & Breakfast
55336 Claire St., Astor, FL 32102
Phone: 352-759-3395
Website: www.astorsfloridianinn.com

Driving Directions
Clearwater Lake Recreation Area
24511 County Road 42, Paisley, FL 32767
Phone: 352-669-0078
Website: www.recreation.gov

Driving Directions
Fish Tales RV
26015 McPherson Lane, Astor, FL 32102
Phone: 352-759-2393
Website: www.fishtalesresort.com

Driving Directions
Blue Creek Area Vacation Rental
56516 Pecan Road, Astor, FL 32102
Phone: 352-759-3377
Website: www.astorflorida.com

Driving Directions
Fiddler's Green Ranch Resort
42725 W. Altoona Road, Altoona, FL 32702
Phone: 352-669-7111
Website: www.fiddlersgreenranch.com

Driving Directions
Powell's Campground
25716 Powell Drive, Astor, FL 32102
Phone: 352-759-2121
Website: www.powellscampground.com

Driving Directions

Dining

Blackwater Inn Restaurant & Lounge
55716 Front St., Astor, FL 32102
Phone: 352-759-2802
Website: www.blackwaterinn.com

American | Outdoor Dining Available

Driving Directions

Fun Things to Do

Fiddler's Green Ranch Resort
42725 W. Altoona Road, Altoona, FL 32702
Phone: 352-669-7111
Website: www.fiddlersgreenranch.com

Driving Directions
Powell's Campground
25716 Powell Drive, Astor, FL 32102
Phone: 352-759-2121
Website: www.powellscampground.com

Driving Directions
St. Johns River Scenic Boat Tours
Located in Astor Florida, Astor, FL 32102
Phone: 352-584-1255
Website: www.stjohnsrivertours.com

Driving Directions

This list is not all inclusive. For a complete list of accommodations, shopping, dining, attractions and events, visit the Lake County Tourism website at: www.visitlakefl.com

About the Run
empty
Length:
7 miles (11.27 km)
Bodies of Water:
St. Johns River, St. Francis Run
Permit Number: 05-001
Paddlers Rating:
Difficulty: 1
Ease of Access: 3
Wildlife Viewing: 4

Run Interactive Map
Overall Interactive Map
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Featured Wildlife
 
American Bald Eagle
Length:
28-36 inches

Weight:
8-14 pounds

Wingspan:
80 inches

Diet:
prefers fish but will eat large birds, mammals and carrion

Interesting Fact:
Removed from the endangerd species list in 2007
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