Cold Spots for Summer Swimming

In the intense heat of summer, I am reminded of a few places where the water is always cold.

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It’s hot out there!  Sometimes, in the warmest weeks of summer, a swimming pool just won’t do.  The tepid water cannot seem to counter the heat of the sun, and the experience of swimming leaves much to be desired.  I have found a few places, though, where the water is always cold.

The first of these is Baron Fork Creek, which starts in Washington County, Arkansas and runs into Oklahoma’s Adair County. It then flows west into Cherokee County and often parallels U.S. Highway 62. Eventually, the river flows into the Illinois River.  It can be rather stony on the bottom, so river sandals are in order, but the water is cool and refreshing, and plenty of canoe trails and camping are also available.

Another place that comes to mind is Blue Hole, east of Salina in Mayes County. Blue Hole is a spring fed old fashioned swimming hole in an eye catching environment, where getting wet is an eye opening experience.  The water is very cold, even in the middle of summer.  It stays somewhere in the neighborhood of 56 to 60 degrees, which is great on a hot Oklahoma day for some people, but quite a shock for others who aren’t ready for it.

Finally, another great “cold spot” is the Frio River, located deep in the Texas Hill Country.  Its water flows cool, clean and clear from underground springs that gush forth some of the purest water to be found in a Texas river, the bed of which is limestone and gravel. Float trips, tubing trips and camping are all available and come highly recommended by locals and tourists alike.

So, if you are ready for a swim, but you like it cold, there’s surely a place for you!

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