Welcome to Camp Chowenwaw Park:


Nature's Calendar

Summer (June-August)
Summer brings the longest days of the year to northern Florida, and the rainiest. On the summer solstice June 20, the sun sets in Green Cove Springs a full 14 hours after it rises, making that day four hours longer than the winter solstice December 21. In northern Maine the light period nearly doubles from winter to summer while at the equator it hardly varies at all. North Florida’s summer rains average 6 inches per month. In this brightest, warmest, wettest season the natural world fairly drips with life. Food is abundant. Activity peaks for many insects: cicadas, wasps, dragonflies, grasshoppers. It is breeding season for black bears. Manatees are commonly seen in Black Creek. Young bobcats and foxes are learning to hunt. Opossums and prothonotary warblers may raise a second brood of youngsters. Summer flowers include buttonbush, scarlet rosemallow, goldenrods and ironweeds. Most songbirds finish raising their chicks by mid-summer. “Fall” migration starts as early as July. Swallow-tailed kites move to staging roosts in South Florida before migrating to southern Brazil. The black-and-white warbler is an early southbound migrant that may be seen at Chowenwaw. Tropical storms can bring unusual avian visitors, so remember your binoculars rain or shine!

Visitor Satisfaction Focus Group
Thursday July 17, 7:00 pm, in the Orange Blossom Building.

Clay County Division of Parks and Recreation will host a focus group meeting to discuss visitor satisfaction at Camp Chowenwaw County Park. The goal is to seek feedback on how you view the park and potential opportunities for improvements, as well as what you love about the park. Whether your visits include your family, a group, or just you and your dog; whether you come for a walk, a wedding, or a weekend camp-out, we want to hear from you. We look forward to getting to know you, and learning more on how we can serve our community better through our Camp Chowenwaw Park programs and services.

The meeting is open to all, but seating is limited so please contact the park if you plan to attend: call 904-529-8058 or email

New 2014 summer hours are effective June 1 – August 31:
Opening at 6:30 am and closing at sunset.

Pool Opens and Swim Lessons Begin on May 3!
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Click here for Pool brochure.

Now Recruiting Volunteers for Camp Chowenwaw Park:
Opportunities for Camp Chowenwaw Park volunteers include leading environmental education programs, helping with our museum, and general park maintenance projects.

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Adobe icon Education Programs
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Special Events and Public Programs:

Adobe icon  History museum is open third Saturdays 9 – 11 am
Adobe icon  Nature Center at Kiwita Building July 12, 9:30 am – 3:00 pm

Camp Chowenwaw Park is a 150 – acre site that Clay County purchased in the Spring of 2006 from the Girl Scouts of Gateway Council. The Girl Scouts operated the camp for more than 70 years before deciding to relocate. The parcel has 100 acres of wetlands and 50 acres of uplands, and is located at the mouth of Black Creek. This relatively pristine site contains predominantly undisturbed upland and wetland natural communities. Camp Chowenwaw Park is located on 1.5 miles of shoreline on Black Creek and Peters Creek and provides a habitat for many water birds. The aquatic vegetation provides foraging areas for the St. Johns River manatee population as well as an ideal habitat for many fish species. Bald eagles, river otters, white tailed deer, turkeys, alligators, foxes, raccoons, migrating songbirds, as well as frogs, lizards, snakes, and turtles are just a few of the creatures you might see while visiting Camp Chowenwaw Park.


Recreational activities include camping, picnicking, kayaking, canoeing, swimming, fishing, bird watching, wildlife viewing, outdoor photography, and hiking.  Our trail systems through the uplands and the wetlands offer scenic tracts for the hiking enthusiast.  Camping facilities include 15 tent sites, two lodges with bunk beds sleeping 16 people per cabin, 9 tree house cabins, each accommodating 4 people, and 7 cabins with bunk beds sleeping 4 – 8 people.  Each campsite has a bathhouse with full restroom accommodations, and a unit house with electricity, including a stove and refrigerator.  Located throughout the park, and at each campsite, are picnic tables and grills for use by campers and park visitors.  To minimize impacts on our natural resources and to protect our plant and wildlife communities, vehicle access is limited.  Camping sites and cabins are accessed by walking trails.  The park is ideally suited as a natural outdoor environmental education facility when you consider the setting, location, and proximity of diverse upland and wetland ecosystems.  Classes and naturalist programs for organized groups and the public will be available in outdoor and indoor classrooms.  The natural outdoor laboratory will allow an opportunity for all conservation minded organizations to become involved with projects to promote protection and conservation enhancement of aquatic, terrestrial habitat, and wildlife in St. Johns watersheds.


Stop by for a picnic or a scenic nature hike, attend one of our naturalist programs, or stay for a day or two in one of our tree house cabins.  Enjoy a bird’s eye view overlooking the Peters Creek floodplain surrounded by spectacular forested wetland communities of mature cypress and hardwoods.  We have it all for the outdoor enthusiast.


Email Policy:  "Under Florida law, e-mail addresses are public records. If you do not want your e-mail address released in response to a public-records request, do not send electronic mail to this entity. Instead, contact this office by phone or in writing."