“The World's Largest Spring-fed Pool!”
We all know that "everything is bigger in Texas", but the old saying often proves to be even more true than you might expect. It's not just about big cowboy hats, big hair and giant steaks... you can even find the world's largest spring-fed swimming pool in the Lone Star State at Balmorhea State Park. The pool itself is 1.75 acres big and holds 3.5 million gallons of water-- so it's definitely Texas-sized! It's fed by the San Solomon Springs, which pump 15 million gallons of fresh, pure spring water into the pool every day-- so it's all natural and totally not chlorinated. The pool is up to 25 feet deep in some places, which makes it perfect for snorkeling or skin and scuba diving, if a casual dip in the more shallow parts or doing jack knifes off the diving board isn't quite doing it for you. Plus, since the water stays around 72 to 76 degrees naturally, it's refreshingly cool during the hot summers, but not so cold that you have to worry about it being so frigid that you can't jump right in. The springs have been important to the people of West Texas for years: the Mescalero Apaches watered their horses there, and farmers used it to irrigate their farmlands during the 1800's. The massive pool was built in the 1930's by the Civilian Conservation Corps, the organization that employed young men to help rebuild parks and roads when jobs were scarce during the Great Depression. There's a canal that guides the water through the pool and then downstream to Balmorhea Lake, which is about three and a half miles away, watering alfalfa and cotton crops along the way. The park is also home to cienegas (desert wetlands from the spring) which are the perfect habitat for some rare plants and wildlife that you won't find many other places in the world. The park has campsites, if you want to make a weekend of your trip to the pool, as well as a retro, 1930's-inspired motor lodge, San Solomon Springs Court. But, no matter where you stay, Balmorhea is the perfect West Texas weekend getaway!
If you're in the area, stop in for a quick dip in the pool. Yes, it will cost you 10bucks per car, but it really is a special place in the middle of nowhere.
Really clear blue water. It is hard to believe it is really that deep. It was a little cool for swimming but we will plan a trip to come back here.
Spring fed - 25 ft depth. Constant 72 to 76 degrees. They have diving boards. One side is deeper than other. No dogs allowed. Visit site for more details, but you do pay fee to get in (worth it).
Did a quick scuba dip here. Air across the road. Crystal clear water (until other in training divers mucked up bottom - though it clears up at a good pace). We found some of the springs feeding it - it was like watching a pot of water boil but with gravel bubbling instead of the water. Super cool. Lots of little fishies that are not timid. Think they get fed by people. They definitely liked my gopro - if I held still they'd try to nibble on my fingers. Not painful, but quite shocking at first. Little buggers.
Worth it for just a quick swim too (don't worry, fishies only hung out on bottom and left non-divers alone).
This place is literally in the middle of nowhere. It's strange to find such a unique and extraordinary pool here. Make sure to reserve a spot to stay as it was sold out on the random night that I appeared and there's nowhere else to stay in the area. Oh, and bring your snorkeling gear - you won't regret it!
My daughter loves to swim and also loves all critters so this was a perfect stop for her. She was bummed she didn’t bring her swimsuit but she still had a great time looking at the soft shell turtles, fish and ducks. We will definitely come back better prepared and in slightly warmer weather so she can fully enjoy.
scuba camping? loved it. big for a spring fed pool. don't expect a lake.
this is an awesome and quaint camp site - the pool is beautiful - 100% recommended
I wish they didn’t make it look like a big swimming pool. Doesn’t really have that state park feel at all.
We stopped there for a day/night. How refreshing it was to get into the water on a hot summer day.
So many fans of this place. Get active though since the pipeline was approved and will impact this natural wonder. Write your congressman and stop the big oil pipeline!!
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Balmorhea State Park
- Sun - Sat: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
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