Review: THE SWIMMING HOLES OF TEXAS

BNR Swimming Holes JPG
THE SWIMMING HOLES
OF TEXAS
by
Julie Wernersbach & Carolyn Tracy
  Genre: Travel / Outdoors / Swimming
Publisher: The University of Texas Press
Date of Publication: May 16, 2017
Number of Pages: 240, 100 color photos
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review

A Must-Have, So-Much-More-Than a Guide Book – helping Texan families survive the summer (and learn a little too).

I absolutely loved The Swimming Holes of Texas.  Of course, majoring in geography and being a “fun fact” junkie might make me a bit biased.  The comprehensive information about each location, including historical, geographical and geological information, alongside the wonderful photography, serves the reader so much more deeply than the average “travel guide”.  

As mentioned in the introduction, summers are unbearable here in Texas and free time usually includes finding a way to cool off from the heat.  This book is a fantastic guide to the oasis that is the swimming hole.  Don’t miss the “pro-tips” for insider info (so you don’t get caught with your pants down – literally).  And most importantly, I think, the author stresses the importance of taking care of our natural sites.  Clean up after yourselves so that we leave it for others to use.  Kudos for making sure to reiterate that point.  We love our state, hence the motto, “Don’t Mess with Texas”.

Whether you’re a traveler just visiting, or a family looking for a unique place to have fun, you’ll find something to meet your needs in this book. The photographs are fantastic, capturing the magnificence of these unique places.  No matter where you are in Texas, you’ll find a place not too far away to make a day trip worthwhile.

I highly recommend this book, and will be keeping it handy to find a spot to cool off this summer.

 

Nothing beats a natural swimming hole for cooling off on a scorching summer day in Texas. Cold, clear spring water, big old shade trees, and a quiet stretch of beach or lawn offer the perfect excuse to pack a cooler and head out with family and friends to the nearest natural oasis. Whether you’re looking for a quick getaway or an unforgettable summer vacation, let The Swimming Holes of Texas be your guide.

Julie Wernersbach and Carolyn Tracy highlight one hundred natural swimming spots across the entire state. The book is organized by geographic regions, so you can quickly find local places to swim—or plan a trip to a more distant spot you’d like to explore. Each swimming hole is illustrated with an inviting color photo and a description of what it’s like to swim there, as well as the site’s history, ecology, and conservation. The authors include all the pertinent info about admission fees and hours, parking, and on-site amenities such as showers and restrooms. They also offer tips for planning your trips and lists of the swimming holes that are most welcoming to families and pets.

So when the temperature tops 100 and there’s nothing but traffic in sight, take a detour down the backroads and swim, sunbathe, revel, and relax in the swimming holes of Texas.




Julie Wernersbach, Austin, is the literary director of the Texas Book Festival and a former marketing director at BookPeople, Austin’s largest independent bookstore.
Carolyn Tracy, Austin, is a freelance photographer who works for an animal welfare nonprofit. They are the authors of Vegan Survival Guide to Austin.

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  June 8-June 22, 2017
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