Swimming Holes Ain’t What They Used to Be. They’re Better!
by Amy Lignor
Oh, come now, you remember back when… The excitement that school was finally over for the year and you were getting that two month reprieve to go and have some fun, leaving those “books and teachers’ dirty looks” behind. Perhaps down the road in your small town there was a swimming hole where you would all gather. The tire swing hung from that old oak limb that looked as if it would break, even though it had held up under all kinds of weather for hundreds of years. Maybe you lived in a city and you longed for a swimming hole, but the only thing available was the community pool. It was okay but, let’s face it, it was confining and every time you wanted to go with you and your friends there were always a million others who had the same idea to do it before you got there.
You may not be aware of the numerous swimming holes just waiting to be explored, dotting the landscape of states that would make perfect vacation spots for you and the family this summer. There are always reports in regards to the ‘best of the best’ swimming holes out there, but let’s take a look at some true ‘paradises on earth’ that will give you the swimming, scuba diving, or snorkeling opportunity you just can’t find anywhere else.
It seems intelligent that one of the hottest states on the map provides one of the most amazing swimming holes in the world. In Arizona, Havasu Falls in located on the Havasupai Indian Reservation. We are talking here about one of the most stunning waterfalls imaginable. Located in the Grand Canyon, it is a perfect spot for those who like to swim as well as trek. You see, in order to get to this breathtaking location, you must first hike ten miles. If you are a hiker or an adventurer, you can take this trek with a friend. If not, you can book a guided tour that will have an expert take you to the Falls. But book soon. This is one place, being that it is on the reservation, that you need a permit to see. And as more and more hear about this spot, less and less trips are available to book.
In the state of Utah people can enjoy one of the most amazing natural wonders of the world. Not only do visitors see it as a swimming hole, but it is also the only warm scuba diving destination in the continental U.S. People come from everywhere across the country to swim or snorkel in the 96-degree water. Hidden under a rock dome, with an opening at the top that allows for both sunlight and air, lies the Homestead Crater. At one time people would have to rappel down into the dome to enjoy the beauty inside. Now, of course, there is easy access through a side tunnel made for visitors who are craving to jump in to that mineral spring water just waiting to relax the bones.
Speaking of both swimming and scuba diving, Devil’s Den in the Sunshine State is an amazing place that will literally bring you back in time. Although the name seems a bit scary, all Floridians will tell you that the reason for this is actually very benign. The Den earned its name from the steam that rises up from the surface of the water, stemming from the underground spring that holds the water to 72-degrees at all times – even when the winter winds may be blowing. This spring calls out to snorkelers, offering gear to rent. And when it comes to history, artifacts as well as extinct animal fossils dating all the way back to the Pleistocene Age have been found inside Devil’s Den. But don’t worry, there’s no possibility that a dinosaur will raise its head out of that water…we assume.
The East Coast is home to one of the most amazing and, again, historical swimming spots you can possibly imagine. Called Dorset Quarry in the state of Vermont, just looking at pictures of this place on a computer will have your eyes grow wide. A marble quarry 6-feet deep, the smooth rock areas allow you a place to sit and watch the sun’s rays bring out the multitude of colors in the marble, or even give you the perfect place to jump from…into the water below, of course. This location is huge. Thirty yards across and approximately 125 yards long, the quarry allows swimmers the ultimate spot to have a good time while cooling off in the summer. A popular swimming hole since the 1920s, you do not want to miss this!
There are many to choose from spanning the Continental U.S. and going all the way to China. It all depends on just how far you’re willing to travel to experience that ultimate swimming hole.
Source: Baret News