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North central Florida is blessed with a number of pristine lakes. One such sparkling body of water is Junior Lake, a 75-acre lake that is also part of an extensive lake district in the Gainesville area which includes a number of large lakes such as Newnans Lake, Orange Lake, Santa Fe Lake, and Lochloosa Lake. With so many opportunities for boating, fishing and other outdoor activities, it's little wonder that Putnam County is referred to as a sportsman's paradise.
Junior Lake is a private lake which has no public boat ramp. Fish include largemouth bass, crappie, shellcracker, and bluegill.
Most of the land surrounding the shoreline of Junior Lake is undeveloped. There is some residential housing but for the most part, the land in the vicinity of Junior Lake is untouched making shoreline fishing and fly fishing very popular in certain sections.
Gainesville is home to The University of Florida and is one of the state's premier centers of education, medicine, cultural events and athletics. Known for its historic buildings and beautiful natural surroundings, Gainesville's numerous parks, museums, cultural centers, golf courses, and lakes provide entertainment for thousands of year-round visitors. For history buffs, the recently opened Hawthorne Historical Museum and Cultural Center holds historical artifacts and paintings from Hawthorne's past.
Hikers and bikers will enjoy a multipurpose trail in the Hawthorn area. The Gainesville-Hawthorne Trail State Park stretches 16 miles from Hawthorne to the City of Gainesville through some of the most scenic and natural areas in north central Florida. The trail is designed for walking, cycling, rollerblading, and horseback riding. Outdoor enthusiasts and bird watchers visiting Little Orange Lake will want to explore this trail to experience the natural beauty of the area.
For some serious outdoor exploration, the Lochloosa Wildlife Conservation Area is located southwest of Little Orange Lake. This 10,333-acre area offers seasonal hunting, fishing, hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, boating, wildlife viewing and primitive camping at designated locations. Boating and fishing opportunities are available on 5,700-acre Lochloosa Lake located in the center of the area. The habitat protects 19 rare or endangered species of wildlife including the sandhill crane and east indigo snake. Bald eagles, cranes, ospreys, black bear, fox, and squirrel can also be seen as you hike the woods or glide across the lake.
For a truly relaxing vacation, Junior Lake offers tranquility and the beauty of nature in an almost private and peaceful setting. Fish, swim, motorboat, kayak, canoe, or just admire the splendor of north central Florida's gorgeous sunsets. With its excellent fishing and plentiful sunshine, Junior Lake is the perfect outdoor getaway.
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