The Chipola River begins at the Marianna Limestone Aquifer known as Blue Springs Basin located just north of Marianna, Florida. The Chipola River feeds Merrits Mill Pond on the east side of Marianna. It flows through Jackson and Calhoun Counties creating swamps along its way. A variety of hardwood forests survive along the river's edge, include: oaks, magnolias, river birch, and dogwood trees. The Chipola River enters the Dead Lakes, located in Gulf County just north of Wewahitchka, the flow slows, its course, widens its path as it spreads out among thousands of tree stumps. The swampy banks are full of bald cypress, TUPELO, willow, black gum, and long leaf pine trees. Wewahitchka, (my home town) is famous for its TUPELO HONEY, because the river's swampy banks that stretch through Gulf County are full of TUPELO TREES, that provide for the purest TUPELO HONEY. As the river flows out of the Dead Lakes it connects with the Chipola Cutoff. This is a stretch of the river that flows down from the Apalachicola River which creates an island called Cutoff Island. On the west side of the island is the Chipola River and on the east side of the island is the Apalachicola River. Picking up speed as its path narrows, the river twist and turns flowing past Cox and Lands Landing's. There are several slews along the way named Maddox Slew, Gum Drift, Magnolia Slew, Virginia Cut, Roberts Slew, and Burgess Creek. Further down the river in the Wewahitchka area is Bryants, Douglas, and Listers Landing's. Just a couple miles further is where the Chipola River joins with the Apalachicola River. This river system covers a vast expanse of swamp land where TUPELO TREES grow in abundance. This entire ecosystem is alive with an abundance of wildlife like the white tail deer, river otter, beaver, alligator, birds, fish, several turtle species some found only in this river, and rare plant life.
| Donald fishing on the Chipola River |