Hamilton Pool Preserve, Dripping Springs

4.4
#1 of 9 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.HistoryPrior 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
Hamilton Pool Preserve Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
581 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • A pleasant surprise. I thought it was going to be a total tourist cheesy thing to do but I was surprised. The walk to the river and pool was beautiful, great mild hike / walk . It was a great couples ...  more »
  • We stopped at the pool on our way to Waco. The trail to the pool was steep and rocky but it was worth the time to stop and see. The trail runs behind the overhang making for very scenic photos.  more »
  • Paid a visit here on a sunny October afternoon. Fairly steep descent on rocks and gravel but well worth it. The pool is stunningly beautiful and the walkway to the river (opposite direction to the poo...  more »

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
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Dripping Springs

Browse hotels, guesthouses, and unique homes and book your stay on the world's leading accommodation sites.
Live like a local, find unique places to stay
Millions of travel reviews on TripAdvisor

Plans in Dripping Springs by other users

2 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, outdoors, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: October, outdoors, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, teens, popular PREFERENCES: October, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, teens, hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 2 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES November, teens, popular PREFERENCES: November, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Texas BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, kids, culture, relaxing, romantic, beaches, popular PREFERENCES: September, kids, culture, relaxing, romantic, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, teens, kids, popular PREFERENCES: September, teens, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Dripping Springs BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, outdoors, popular PREFERENCES: August, outdoors ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans