Hamilton Pool Preserve, Dripping Springs

4.5
#1 of 19 in Things to do in Dripping Springs
Hamilton Pool Preserve is a natural pool that was created when the dome of an underground river collapsed due to massive erosion thousands of years ago. The pool is located about 23 miles (37 km) west of Austin, Texas off Highway 71. Since the 1960s, Hamilton Pool has been a popular summer swimming spot for Austin visitors and residents. Hamilton Pool Preserve consists of 232acre of protected natural habitat featuring a jade green pool into which a 50ft waterfall flows.
The pool is surrounded by large slabs of limestone that rest by the water's edge; large stalactites grow from the ceiling high above. The ceiling and surrounding cliffs of the grotto are home to moss, maidenhair fern and cliff swallows. The Ashe juniper (cedar) uplands of the preserve are home to the endangered golden-cheeked warbler.
The natural pool and creek are not chemically treated, so water quality is monitored regularly and swimming is occasionally restricted. Hamilton Pool is part of the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve and is a protected environment.
Prior to the 19th century, the Tonkawa and Lipan Apaches lived in the area. In the mid-1860s, Morgan C. Hamilton owned the property now known as Hamilton Pool Preserve. His brother, Andrew Jackson Hamilton, evidently visited the grotto while serving as Texas governor (1865–66). In the 1880s, the Reimers' family, immigrants from Germany, bought the property to raise sheep and cattle. Legend says that their eight-year-old son discovered the collapsed grotto.
Although ranchers might have considered the grotto a safety hazard for their livestock, the Reimers soon realized its value as a recreational area and opened the property for public use. Around the turn of the 20th century, the site did not attract many visitors, but by the 1960s, and on into the 1980s, Hamilton Pool's popularity had increased. The land suffered from sheer numbers and few restrictions.
Plan your visit to Hamilton Pool Preserve and a wealth of other attractions, well-known and undiscovered, using our Dripping Springs trip maker website .
Source
Create an itinerary including Hamilton Pool Preserve
map
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors
Hamilton Pool Preserve Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
682 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • In this reserve you will find a beautiful natural swimming pool in a grotto. It is necessary to make a reservation in advance since the access and the capacity is limited. After entering and parking the vehicle is directed one towards the path. After going down a bit you will find 2 options; I personally would choose to go to the left where you take a long stretch of the trail next to the creek. It's a half-mile hike in every direction and it's nice without being spectacular; Which would be disappointing if you left after seeing the destination by the Orro Trail. With regard to this is beautiful and you can take advantage of having walked to rest in front of that landscape and even get into the water. Highly recommended
    View original
  • My daughter and I thoroughly enjoyed this unbelievably beautiful part of our state of Texas. We made the required reservations a few weeks in advance and luckily had glorious weather! Come with $15 ca...  more »
Google
  • I was skeptical that it wouldn't live up to the hype, but it totally delivered and then some! I was so impressed with the natural beauty and Crystal clear water. There's a nice hike the opposite way to the river that's not too long. Highly recommend!
  • This is a serene place to just get out from the busy life in the city, feel the cool breeze and enjoy the sounds of the water. The walk going to the pool preserve can be a little rocky so make sure to be in your most comfortable walking gear. We will definitely come back here in the summer.

Plan your trip to Dripping Springs

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Popular things to do in Dripping Springs

4.6
Duration: 2​h 30​min
3.8
Duration: 2​h 30​min
4.4
Duration: 1​h 30​min
5.0
Duration: 1​h 30​min

Side trips from Dripping Springs

4.7
Duration: 4​h
4.6
Duration: 2​h 30​min
4.5
Duration: 2​h
Hye
4.8
Duration: 1​h 30​min

Hidden gems in Dripping Springs

4.4
Duration: 2​h
4.1
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.3
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.5
Duration: 2​h 30​min

Wineries in Dripping Springs

4.6
Duration: 30​min
1.0
Duration: 1​h 30​min

Nearby attractions in Dripping Springs

5.0
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.7
Duration: 2​h 30​min

Breweries & Distilleries in Dripping Springs

4.5
Duration: 1​h 30​min