Texas's Hill Country is famed for its many natural, spring-fed swimming holes-- a good thing, since there's no better way to escape the Texas heat and take advantage of the beauty of Hill Country at the same time. Some of them remain hidden gems, while others were quickly turned into tourist attractions by entrepreneurial Texans looking to start resorts and businesses. One of the most interesting and successful swimming hole attractions was Austin's Deep Eddy Pool.
The Deep Eddy Pool has a long and storied history. It started out at the turn of the century as a simple swimming hole on the banks of the Colorado River in Austin; the cool spring water that flowed up from the ground and into an eddy formed by a boulder made the perfect place to take a dip. In 1915, an enterprising man named A.J. Eilers, Sr. bought up the piece of land with the swimming hole and built a concrete pool around the springs. His idea was to make it part of a resort he called the Deep Eddy Bathing Beach. He added cabins, concessions, campsites, a Ferris wheel and more.
The pool itself had a tall waterslide and a zipline running across it, but those were relatively tame when it came to attractions offered by the pool. The most interesting show was, by far, Lorena's Diving Horse. The horse was led up a ramp to the top of a 50-foot platform at the edge of the Deep Eddy Pool, and the horse was dive right on in. There was also allegedly a diving baby, although information on that particular oddity is scarce. In 1935, the city of Austin purchased the property and turned it into a park-- they've converted the bathhouse into a space to house an exhibit, added a playground, and generall maintained the pool, which remains the main attraction of the park, which they named Eilers Park.
The pool is the most popular feature for a reason: the natural, spring-fed pool doesn't just mean that the water is always a perfect 65 degrees-- it also means that the water is naturally always fresh and clean, with no icky chlorine. Something about the pool (and the nearby Deep Eddy Cabaret, one of the best authentic Austin dives left) inspired Texas singing Jimmie Dale Gilmore to write a song called "Deep Eddy Blues"-- but for the most part, the only blue you'll be seeing is from the water, since it's just a really pleasant place to spend an afternoon. -Roadtrippers
Deep Eddy Pool is a historic, man-made swimming pool in Austin, Texas, United States. Deep Eddy is the oldest swimming pool in Texas and has a bathhouse built during the Depression-era, by the Works Progress Administration. The pool began as a swimming hole in the Colorado River, became a resort in the 1920s, and is today a popular swimming pool operated by the City of Austin.
“oldest swimming pool in Texas”
This spring-fed swimming hole-turned ridiculous 1920's resort turned public pool has a fascinating history--- and it's still one of the country's most pleasant pools. It's incredibly cheap, good for swimming laps, no gross chlorine, always a nice temperature, wading pool for the kids, concession stand with yummy water ice... basically, everything you could want from a pool.
The "Official Description" says it is a man-made swimming pool, which is true, but it doesn't mention that it is spring fed. The water is always cold, but a little warmer in the very shallow end, because of the sun warming it. It's a GREAT place for all ages. There are dedicated swimming lanes divided by a limestone wall from the regular swim area. I took my daughter and a few of her friends for her 9th birthday, and everyone had a great time swimming, even my 14 month old son. We walked next door for pizza afterward, but I believe Mangia Pizza is no longer there. Too bad 'cause it was a great fun low budget birthday party!
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- Mon - Fri: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
- Sun, Sat: 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
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