Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Arizona Swimming Holes

     As the long hot summer begins to give way to the reality of the beginning of another school year, surely there is time to get out one more time and escape to Arizona’s cool high country.  One classic activity of summer, enjoyed everywhere in the world and by people of all ages, is to discover and to take a cool dip in a local swimming hole.  Arizona has some incredible swimming holes! Many are located along local high country rivers and streams within two hours of driving time from Anthem.
    Some can be driven right up to while others require a little hiking.  All are a fun, refreshing and cool way to end another year of summer vacation.  Here are a few of Arizona’s most popular and free swimming holes…

Payson area…

1.    Water Wheel Falls and Campground are found just 10 miles north of Payson on Houston Mesa Road.  Located on the banks of the East Verde River, this is a great family swimming hole and easily to access with a short hike.   Link: http://blog.travelpod.com/travel-blog-entries/jamiehines/2/1214515500/tpod.html
2.    Ellison Creek is another popular East Verde River swimming hole about 1 mile north of the Water Wheels Falls.  It is near the Houston Mesa Campground and requires a short hike to reach.  Link: http://www.azswimmingholes.com/ellison_creek.html

Camp Verde area…

1.    Clear Creek is one of the easier swimming holes to reach, as it is just a few hundred yards from the Clear Creek Campground.  The swimming areas are not as deep as other swimming holes but the easy access makes it a popular destination. Link - http://www.azswimmingholes.com/clear_creek.html

2.    Fossil Creek is one of two “Wild and Scenic rivers found in Arizona.  Here over 30 million gallons of water gush from a series of springs under the Mogollon Rim each day at a constant 70 degrees.  The swimming holes are located some 30 miles southeast of Camp Verde.  When swimming hole traffic gets too heavy, the Forest Service will close the access road. Link - http://www.azswimmingholes.com/fossil_creek.html

3.    “The Bull Pen” on West Clear Creek is one of the classic swimming holes in the Camp Verde area.  The sandy beach and rope swing makes this a very popular destination for swimming. Link – http://www.sedonaverdevalley.org/campverde/legendaryswimmingholes.html

4.    Wet Beaver Creek has an excellent swimming hole for kids with a fun-filled rope swing.  It is located near the intersection of AZ-179 and I-17, just ¼ mile from the Beaver Creek Campground. Link - http://www.dreamsedona.com/beaver-creek-campground.html

Sedona area…

    The Sedona area has many wonderful swimming holes including central Arizona’s largest swimming hole known as “The Crack”.  Recent fires have closed some swimming holes located in Oak Creek Canyon, but most of the areas cool pools are still open to enjoy.  A local B&B’s website has highlighted a dozen of the Sedona areas best swimming holes - http://www.adobevillagegrahaminn.com/things-to-do/swimming-holes.htm

     Please remember your good swimming hole etiquette that includes to not use any glass containers, to take out anything you take in and to always be courteous to other swimmers.  You will want to wear tennis shoes or sturdy, water shoes that you can get wet when you swim.  You do not want to take off your shoes as the swimming holes can be slippery and contain sharp items.  Some swimming holes are shaded, some are in full sunshine – sunscreen is a must!

Helpful links - http://www.swimmingholes.org/az.html ; http://www.azswimmingholes.com/ ; http://paysonrimcountry.com/

Photo Credit - Town of Payson

Water Wheel near Payson

East Verde River

Another view of East Verde River

East Verde River

East Verde River

East Verde River

Fossil Creek Waterfall


1 comment:

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