Located in north central Pasco County near the Suncoast Parkway, Crews Lake Wilderness
Park covers 113 acres along the west shore of Crews Lake. The lake is the headwaters
of the Pithlachascotee River that flows into the Gulf of Mexico 25 miles downstream.
There is access for fishing and kayaking ... but the lake level can vary by extremes
depending on total annual rainfall. It has been know to be completely dry in periods
of severe drought. Lake level is also affected by the presence of numerous sinkholes
that drain into the Floridan aquifer, and from groundwater wellfield pumping.
Although Crews Lake Wilderness Park
has a wealth of recreational facilities, the lake is probably it's most important
feature. Two and a half miles of hiking trails wind through the woods and extend
along the lakeshore. Plus an unmarked trail runs to the south onto Pasco County
owned land beyond the the park borders. A paved half mile long multi-use trail also
extends through the park. At water's edge, there is a seven-level 40 foot high
wooden observation tower, and a long ADA accessible sightseeing or fishing pier.
When the water is high enough, access to the lake is provided by a concrete boat
There are four covered picnic shelters and two large pavilions available for use
or rental by the public, along with ample parking. Other amenities include a large
playground (divided into areas for younger and older children), volleyball courts,
horseshoe pits, a small botanical garden, and a log cabin to explore.
One of the notable features of Crews
Lake Wilderness Park is the "Central Pasco and Gulf Railroad" - a 7½ inch
gauge riding railroad with 8,500 feet of track. The railroad offers rides on the
2nd saturday of each month and for other special occasions like Easter and Christmas.
The CP&G organization also hosts a variety of railroad meets where train modeling
enthusiasts come from all over the country to use the layout.
Ten campsites are available for overnight tent camping at the park. There is also
a group tent camping area. Reservations must be made in advance through the Pasco
County Parks & Recreation Department.
Near the end of April each year, the park hosts a large Earth Day celebration. Arts
and craft vendors come out in force, along with a variety of wildlife and environmental
demonstrations and displays. The PC&G railroad participates in the festivities
by offering train rides.