Lately there has been a lot of interest in the Lampasas Texas page here on The Road Trip Destination Guide. That interest is mostly because of the Pool at Hancock Springs. Water from Hancock Spring flows freely through the pool and out into the river. This quote from the City of Lampasas web site describes the charm of the pool very well:
Hancock Park’s Pool is different. It is a bit of Lampasas history, constructed in the very early 1900’s, and a summertime recreation spot for every kid that grew up here since that time. It’s importance is also enhanced by the fact that it is one of very few free-flow pools in the state, possibly the oldest pool. It is fed by a large spring and, although it is occasionally plagued with inherent problems that come with that territory, such as low flow and occasional turbidity, it is very special. Special enough that, as Lampasas tries to discover what reasons make it special enough to warrant tourism, the old pool seems to stand out as one of the best.
This and an email I received from the Texas Parks and Wildlife folks got me to thinking, people are looking for a good road trip destination that includes a swimming hole. It’s hot, it’s getting closer to the end of summer. I’m thinking myself, I want to go have a good swim in a classic Texas swimming hole.
I’ve already made my mind up about where I’m going. I thought it might be nice to link to some good sources of information for those who are still trying to decide. That set of links follows.
The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department just published, on their web site, a list of the 10 best swimming holes in state parks. Now, limiting the list to just state parks stifles the choices a little, but as you look the list over you may recognize some of the best swimming destination in the state. Some of them aren’t that far away from DFW, like for instance Tyler State Park and Possum Kingdom State Park. Their list also includes some real classic Hill Country river swimming destinations.
The Texas Highways’ web site has a real classic list of road trip swimming holes in the state. This list was originally published in 1998. I remember I had the magazine, and when I finally threw it away I tore the pages out that had the swimming holes article and kept if for another five years. Realize this list is a little outdated and you may want to verify destination information before packing up the car and taking off. Thing is, most of these places are rivers or pools filled by springs. I’m pretty sure the Frio River hasn’t declared bankruptcy in the Great Recession of 2009, and you can bet Krause Springs isn’t operating under Chapter 11 protection either.
Texas Escapes has excerpts from Chandra Moira Beal’s 1999 book, Splash Across Texas. The focus is on Central Texas and the Hill Country. A little hard to navigate since the book excerpts are woven into the content of their site. Still worth a look and they have some options for those looking for a more obscure swimming hole. Again, check the current information to be sure the spot is still good.
That’s my list of swimming hole resources. Hope someone finds it useful. Please consider enjoying your late summer swimming road trip in a pool that’s been popular for generations with folks here in Texas.