I love stories that are centered in small towns with romance or mystery at the
“old swimmin’ hole.” I imagine tire swings and skinny dipping. Have you ever gone skinny dipping?
The most amazing historic watering hole I’ve ever seen is just outside Austin, Texas at the Hamilton Pool Nature Preserve. It is unique and amazing, I promise.
Imagine a 1/4 a mile tricky trail, gorgeous hill country, a limestone canyon, a collapsed grotto, a clear natural pool and a 50-foot waterfall.
Wait, you don’t have to imagine it. I have pictures!
The history behind this spot is impressive. The canyon and grotto were formed by thousands of years of water erosion. Prior to the 1800′s, Tonkawa and Lipan Apache Indians lived in the area. In the 1800′s, Andrew Jake Hamilton’s brother owned the land.
Later on the land belonged to German immigrants to raise sheep and cattle. This family, the Reimers, discovered the grotto and opened the land up for public use.
Eventually Travis County bought over 200 acres from the Reimers, and made this area a nature preserve.
You can swim, picnic, hike, study nature and go on tours in the Hamilton Pool Nature Preserve. It’s very rustic, very beautiful and a place you shouldn’t miss visiting.
Pets are not permitted, sturdy footwear is recommended, and sometimes they close it down due to high bacteria counts, so call 512-264-2740 before you head out there for swimming. A daily permit is $8 per vehicle and $3 per bike or pedestrian. Their website has a virtual tour.
And while you’re there, if you happen to pen a novel centered around a watering hole and it becomes a best seller…please, name a character after me.