How to get there:
From the JSU website:
The Frog Pond is in the Choccolocco State Forest at the intersection of the Joseph Springs Motorway (USFS Rd. 522) and AL Highway 9. The site is approximately 10 minutes from Anniston, Oxford, Jacksonville and Heflin. It is 1/8 mile south of White Plains Elementary School.
Turn onto the hard-packed dirt road (Joseph Springs Motorway) and travel east 0.2 miles. On the left, you will find small gravel parking area, a gate between parking and trail, and a short nature trail that will lead you to a wetland boardwalk and an adjoining 14 foot tall observation tower. Watch the trail carefully and be sure to turn left each time the trail forks. No fee unless participating in guided program. Programs usually offered first Saturdays March - May at 7 pm. $5 per person.
How we got there:
I looked up White Plains Elementary School : 5600 Alabama Highway 9. Anniston, AL 36207, and plugged it into my Nuvi, then had it show me the map, I scrolled down to the intersection and saved it as a waypoint. For some reason Nuvi could not find the elementary school, only the high school and could not find Joseph Springs Motorway, even though it has that road labeled on the map.
What to expect:
About 1/4 mile from the intersection, there is a small dirt pull-off on the left with a gated road leading off at a 90 degree angle.
Park here, go around the gate and take the first left (marked by a large pile of dirt blocking the road) onto a trail, it's a very short walk to the pond.
There is a 15 foot tall observation deck and a short boardwalk out onto the edge of the pond.
There are no facilities here.
The pond is actually a wetland, so it will be dry in the summer and fall.
In May 2010, there was heavy logging going
on, and there were no signs beyond the turn off the main road. It was a bit
confusing to find the pond, but well worth the initial...wandering around. You
can actually see the pond on the left from the road, through the trees. The
parking area is just past that!
In March 2015, the logging was done, you can see the pond easily as the whole area around it has been clear-cut. LINK TO THAT VISIT
Dragonfly Nymph just under the water
We spent about an hour just looking in the
tadpoles, spiders, water boatmen, dragonflies and nymphs, water striders all came and went.
As the sun got lower, the tannic acid in the water provided a perfect mirror.