Karick Lake Recreation Area

Brief History

Karick Lake is a man-made lake located in Okaloosa County in the Blackwater River State Forest. It was built in 1965. The lake averages about 7 feet deep in most areas but can get to 18 feet deep near the dam. There are two campgrounds associated with this recreation area. One on the north side of the lake and one on the south.

Started Out As A Ride Through The Forest

Our exploration started as a simple motorcycle ride through the Blackwater River State Forest. We had already checked out the Blackwater River State Park so now it was time to check out what else was in this forest. After all the Blackwater River State Forest is the largest state forest in Florida featuring 210,000 acres of woodlands, lakes, and streams. We had recently visited the Blackwater River State Park (check out our review of the park by using this link “<Blackwater River State Park>” and now it was time to explore what else is in this incredible forest. We love to just start riding and see what we could find. When we saw the sign for the Karick Lake Recreation Area we decided to check it out.

N Karick Rd Street Sign

It was a long freshly paved road that eventually got us into the recreation area. It was appropriately named N. Karick Entrance Road. Upon entry, we found a grassy area for parking which was a little tricky for the bike. Good thing we always bring something for under the kickstand. The entry fee was $2 payable in an envelope and dropped into what we call the “iron ranger” pay station.

First Impressions Were Good Ones

As we looked around we had a great view of the lake with a small boat ramp for launching kayaks or canoes. The bathhouse facility was directly across the street from us. The campsites were in between the bathhouse and the lake on a circular road. There are 15 RV/tent sites with half the sites backing right up to the lake.

Fishing Pier

Next to the small boat ramp was a good sized fishing dock. I believe this lake is stocked with fish periodicly. Although you can fish, kayak, and canoe there is no swimming allowed. Pets are welcome as long as they are on a leash.

If you are not camping and only coming in for the day, there are picnic tables you can sit at and eat. There is also a nice hiking trail that will take you completely around the lake. After we walked through the campground area we decided to take the hike around the lake.

Time For A Hike

The hike around the lake is approximately 3.7 miles. It’s a fairly easy hike. At one point it will take you into the Karrick Lake South camping area. There are about 15 camping sites on this side and they all include 30amp service and potable water. There is no sewer at the sites but there is a dump station. There is also a bathhouse with restrooms and shower facilities. As with the north side, there is a spot for fishing and launching a kayak/canoe on this side.

After checking out the campground area and facilities on this side and taking a little break at one of the picnic tables we were back on the hiking trail. Again, it was a pretty easy trail and led us to the dammed area on the far side of the lake. As we crossed over the dam area we found ourselves back on the north side of the lake. A short walk and we were back into the north side camping area.

Final Thoughts

This campground/recreation area is a great place to either spend the day or camp out at. With amenities like fishing, hiking, picnicking, and boating you will have a great time. If we were going to be in the area longer we would have definitely booked a site for a couple of nights. After all, how can you beat a campfire right on the lake?!!!

If you would like to make a reservation to camp at either the north or south side, you will need to go through Reserve America. You can use the links below.

Karick Lake North Campground Reservations

Karick Lake South Campground Reservations

Have you either camped or visited for the day to Karick Lake? If so, what did you think? If not, would you? Leave us a comment and let us know your thoughts.

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