On hot summer days in Austin there is perhaps no more perfect spot to cool off than Hamilton Pool. This natural pool is part of the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve located northwest of Austin in Dripping Springs, Texas.

Hamilton Preserve is home to a fifty foot waterfall, grotto, natural pool, small beach, and hiking trails along the Pedernales River. This pool is very popular among Austin locals and during the peak months of summer, May through September, a reservation is required to enter. It should be noted that while the pool does not get too deep, there are no lifeguards on duty. Swimming is done at your own risk.

A few tips for those planning on visiting Hamilton Pool Preserve from Austin custom home builder:

-Pack a few pairs of shoes for your visit: hiking shoes if you plan on exploring the surrounding preserve and water shoes to protect you from rocks in and around the pool itself.
-There is no fishing allowed at the pool. Leave your poles and nets at home.
-The admission price is $15 per car and must be paid in cash. If you arrive by bike or on foot, the fee is only $3. There are senior citizen discounts available.
-Reservations to enter may be made online. You can choose a particular date and pay the reservation fee at the same time (admission fee is still required the day of). Reservations are non-refundable and cannot be altered once made. A reservation is required for each vehicle. Without a reservation during the summer months, do not attempt to visit the pool.
-Admission to the pool also allows you to visit other parks in Travis County. One nearby option is Reimers Ranch Park.
-Restrooms are located about a quarter of a mile from the pool.
-Swimming is only permitted if the water meets quality standards set by the Texas Department of Health. You can call the day of to check conditions.
-There are a limited number of parking spaces. If the lot is full, you have to wait for a car to leave before gaining entry, sometimes up to two hours. It is best to visit during off-peak hours to avoid the delay.
-Pets are not allowed within the preserve.
-The Hamilton Pool is open daily from 9:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m. with no entry after 5:30.

The Hamilton Pool Reserve is located at 24300 Hamilton Pool Rd, Dripping Springs, TX, 78620. Visit the official website for more information.