2014 Top 50 Pool Builder shares some of nature’s best swimming holes in the United States. Cipriano Landscape Design- Bergen County Northern, NJ
Are you looking for a natural style swimming pool but aren’t sure what you want it to look like? Some of the best residential swimming pools draw inspiration from Mother Nature and her wonderful work. In no particular order, here are some of the coolest swimming holes throughout the country.
Little River Canyon- Alabama
The Little River winds its way through the northeastern part of Alabama across the top of Lookout Mountain before spilling out into the 12-mile long Little River Canyon below. Cliffs made of sandstone border the natural swimming holes throughout the canyon. In some instances wonderful swimming holes are created when the water cascades over this cliffs and pools up before continuing down the canyon.
Havasu Falls- Supai, Arizona
Located in a very hard to get to location, the Havasu Falls are a mile and a half outside the Havasupai Indian village of Supai, at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. With no roads, the only way to get here is charter a helicopter, hike 10 miles up steep terrain, or hire a pack mule. The final destination is well worth the trouble as the most turquoise water you’ve ever seen flows off a waterfall into this natural swimming hole that stays close to 72 degrees all year round.
Carlon Falls- Yosemite National Park, California
Set in the middle of Yosemite National Park, the incredible Carlon Falls is a rare year-round waterfall that can be easily reached after a relatively flat 2-mile hike. The beautiful swimming hole is bordered by ponderosa pines and meadows of purple lupine with sunflowers. The 35-foot waterfall moves over the granite outcroppings falling into a pool where all you can hear is the sound of rushing water and birds above.
Redfish Lake- Stanley, Idaho
Redfish Lake gets its name because at one point there were so many sockeye salmon spawning that the lake appeared to be red. Nowadays, the lake is better known now for its vast bird population. Located in the backcountry of Idaho this area sees little human interaction and truly is a pristine piece of nature. A seat on the south shore beach can provide incredible views of the snowcapped Sawtooth mountain range which are reflected in the calm waters of the lake.
Echo Lake- Mount Desert Island, Maine
The Mount Desert Island is composed of long finger like bodies of water that have been carved out by glaciers over many years. As you move towards the interior the land slopes gently down creating the beach at Echo Lake. The lake rarely gets above 55 degrees, so working up a bit of a sweat through hiking nearby trails is generally recommended before swimming in these chilly but beautiful waters.
Johnson’s Shut-Ins- Reynolds Count, Missouri
The East Fork of the Black River in Missouri turns through a rock channel in Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park. The “shut-ins” area of the river is the portion where the water is interrupted by smooth black volcanic rock that formed centuries ago. The water moving around the rocks has created several small pools for people to swim and enjoy. This place isn’t as isolated is it may seem though. Only located two hours from St. Louis, locals and tourists alike regularly visit the “shut-ins”.
Peekamoose Blue Hole- Sundown, New York
In the middle of the Catskills forest, Roundout Creek cascades through a gap in the rocks creating this picturesque swimming hole. Right off of New York Route 28A the area is easy to access and a wonderful place to spend a summer day with friends. When you think of the perfect natural swimming hole this is pretty close to the image that comes to mind.
Sliding Rock- Brevard, North Carolina
If you can picture a natural waterslide that gradually slopes into an awesome swimming hole below you would have Sliding Rock. The rock has been smoothed down by centuries of constant moving water. The slide is almost 60 feet long and shoots you into some pretty cold Carolina mountain water. Sliding Rock is located in the middle of the Pisgah National Forest and attracts everyone form local high school kids to tourists and families traveling along the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Cummins Falls- Cookeville, Tennessee
Located roughly halfway between Nashville and Knoxville you can find Cummins falls. The water here cascades 50 feet over a staircase like rock structure into a deep cold water pool. This is no pool for amateurs as the hike to get there is treacherous requiring a rope guide to get you down to the water level. If you’re able to handle it though, the descent into the pool is definitely worth all the trouble.
The Blue Hole- Wimberley, Texas
Possibly the perfect summer swimming hole, the Blue Hole is a wonderful way to cool off from the hot Texas sun. Old-growth Bald Cypress trees are spread throughout the water, and the grassy riverbanks are perfect for picnicking. The trees provide comfortable shade and a place for rope swings over the swimming hole. The area is visited frequently by locals from Austin who flock to it during the afternoons.