Just An Old Swimming Hole. Just Perfect For Summertime!

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Barton Springs Pool at Zilker Park…a favorite local “place to be” in Austin, Texas…the ultimate summertime swimming hole to me!!


When you jump into Barton Springs Pool for a swim, be prepared! The water feels absolutely freezing! Fed from underground springs, the water is usually 68 degrees to 70 degrees. Yikes!! Compared to the probably near or over 100 degree weather…the water is indeed cold…and just what you need on a hot Texas day.

Spanish explorers discovered the springs way back in the 17th century and eventually built (in about 1739) missions at the site. The springs were considered sacred and were first used by the Tonkawa Native American tribe who lived in the area.

There have been several private owners of the springs, but the last owner–Andrew Jackson Zilker–deeded it to Austin in 1918. The city proceeded to create a large swimming area by damming up the springs. Sidewalks were put into place and a bathhouse was built.

Barton Springs Pool brings about a yesteryear type of feeling to me…the bathhouse, the canoes and the rowboats/the picnic areas/the kids throwing footballs/ the happy swimmers just about everywhere. The key word is happy…hardly anything better than hearing laughter from all ages…at a beautiful swimming hole on a hot summer day!!


The Swimming Hole

The Swimming Hole

A burbling tuneful peaty burn
Like amber whisky flowing clear
Where darting minnows twist and turn
Is soothing music to my ear.

Between the banks of rushes green
Below the falls a deep dark pool
Where lads who come to swim are seen
Enjoying fun and keeping cool.

I paddle in the flowing brine
Where icy waters cool my feet
And ripple through my toes, sublime.
A feeling rare, supremely sweet.

The swimming hole, a place to be
When sun is warm and spirits free
I spend a quiet happy day
And watch my worries float away

Copyright © Margaret Foster | Year Posted 2010


“Texas Country Reporter”…one of my favorite shows…reports on favorite Texas Swimming Holes! 







13 thoughts on “Just An Old Swimming Hole. Just Perfect For Summertime!

    • I have never heard of Sylvan Lake, but I know where the Black Hills are located! We have never been to South Dakota! I am going to look it up and learn all about it! Barton Springs is really pretty and really fun…and located right in the middle of Austin! The water is SO cold! I am afraid of regular swimming holes…like at the farm…because of the possibility of alligators! Two were seen in our creek last weekend…by our son-in-law and two of his friends! They caught one two years ago…it was huge. And…I am afraid of snakes!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sylvan Lake is in Custer State Park near Needles Highway. It is also the site of one of the trailheads for Harney Peak. (which I think has been renamed Black Elk Peak for political correctness)
        I don’t think I would swim near alligator either!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I have a friend who has been to Custer State Park. South Dakota has such an interesting history…we need to visit there! I thought about you this morning…Al Roker, the weatherman on the Today Show specifically mentioned possible storms in Iowa! I heard on the 5:00 news while I was cooking dinner that there was a tornado south of Des Moines (I think south). Goodness…I am busy keeping up with your weather and I already was keeping up with New Orleans and Tulsa weather! And now, my school friend is on their mid-life sailboat adventure! I don’t even know what the weather is going to be in Dallas/Fort Worth tomorrow!!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • My friend goes each year but I have yet to visit, We have the one in Galveston that I haven’t visited either but my friend says don’t bother with that one – go to San Marcos. You ever been?


      • I don’t know about the water park in Galveston, but we haven’t been down there for about six or seven years! San Marcos is fun and also crowded…but I sort of like crowded places like that! Weird, I know! We haven’t been to San Marcos for a few years… we would usually stop on the way to San Antonio. We went through a phase of going to San Antonio every so often! We stopped when we discovered Big Cedar Lodge in Missouri! We get stuck on places! When our children were little…I may have told you this…we went to Red River, NM for seven years in a row!


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