Florida Guide > State Parks
Werner Boyce Salt Springs
Werner Boyce Salt Springs State Park is in Port Richey, west Pascoe County on the Gulf Coast of Florida.
Werner Boyce covers something over 3, 400 acres (some under water) and some sea front (about 4 miles) Only 600 acres are upland, the rest is either wet land or actually under water.
This is an opportunity to visit a State Park in its developing stages. It has only been open to the public since 2001. The part that is open to the public is only a small part of the entire park.
Of course you will come here mainly because of the salt spring which is flagged up in the title. This looks quite modest but in fact is a surprising 320 foot deep.
The area was once the property of 2 men called William Hope and David Henry who each farmed 160 acres. Once they had erected their homesteads they set up building up their herds of cattle.
In common with many of the farmers of their day, the cattle roamed free. Rather surprisingly they were attracted to the salt spring and used to make their way there to lick off the salt.
Henry and Hope eventually realised that they had a valuable commodity on their land and started to evaporate the spring water to harvest the salt. They sold this for $10 per bushel.
They could make around 15 bushels of salt a day so it was no small enterprise. In 1864, they made plans to sell the salt works and it was priced at $8000. 800 cattle were up for sale at the same time and the herd was valued at $20000.
At some point the area became known as Hopeville and Port Richey and later in 1880, plans were laid to build a town here but the idea did not reach fruition. The State Park took over early in the 21st century.
As the months and years go by the Parks Department will develop and open up this park for the visitors.
At the time of writing there is only a half mile trail to walk. Here you may come acroos a gopher tortoise or a gray fox. You may also see a manatee in the water and there are birds to spot for the twitchers.
Just to make it super clear that there are no real amenities at this park. A composting toilet, an information kiosk and a picnic area just about sums it up
Werner-Boyce Salt Springs State Park
P. O. Box 490
Port Richey, Florida 34673
Phone: 727 - 816-1890Citizen Support Organization
Salt Springs Alliance
P. O. Box 295
Port Richey, FL 34673
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