28 New Things: Barton Springs and Hamilton Pool

20 May

Austin is known for its hot, horrible summer weather. And yeah, it’s bad. We got a bit of a reprieve this spring, but the 95 degree weather just started today. And it’s not going to stop. So how do you manage it? Cold margaritas, lots of A/C and dips in a few of Austin’s amazing spring-fed, very chilly swimming holes.

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Hamilton Pool is what I think of when I think of a swimming hole. It’s located about 40 minutes from downtown Austin in the Texas Hill Country. To keep it unspoiled, only about 70 cars are allowed in the parking lot at a time, meaning that you may have to wait during busy, hot days. Worth it though. This pond is half shaded by a cave and surrounded by a sandy beach, perfect for picnics.

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My iPhone camera really couldn’t do this place justice, so you’ll just have to check it out for yourself.

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And then Austin’s pride and joy — Barton Spring. This massive, 3 acre swimming pool is fed by natural springs, so the temperature always hovers around 70 degrees. The grounds include beautiful, tree covered sloping hills, where visitors can sunbathe for as long as they like. Also, the pool is open until 10 pm, and free after 9 pm (it’s $3 before). Swimming under the stars in the chilly water is really the perfect way to spend a hot summer evening. Oh, and in true weird Austin fashion, going topless is allowed at Barton Springs, and though not a lot of ladies go for it, I have seen my fair share of boobs there. Also, if you go on a full moon night, expect to hear a bunch of folks howling like crazy. It’s weird. It’s Austin.

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This photo from the Austin City website. The rest of the photos in this post were taken by me.

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One Response to “28 New Things: Barton Springs and Hamilton Pool”

  1. Holly May 20, 2013 at 6:10 pm #

    Ugh, Mandy, you make me want to move to Austin REAL BAD. 🙂

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