Taking the Plunge At The Devil’s Watering Hole

You will love this Texas Swimming Hole on a hot day, and you don’t even need to sell your soul to the devil to play here!  One of the wonders of the Texas Hill Country are our beautiful swimming holes, and it just doesn’t get much better than the Devil’s Watering Hole to keep you cool on a hot Texas Summer Day!  Check out my tips, other local attractions and things to Know Before You Go!


One of our favorite swimming holes in Texas, we visit the Devil’s Watering Hole numerous times, all year long!  From Summer hangouts to birthday parties for both my daughter in September and even my son whose birthday is in early February, and yes, those boys all take the chilly plunge!   We even did a Polar Plunge on New Year’s Day one year!


1. The Devil’s Watering Hole is located inside Inks Lake State Park, so you’re going to need to pay admission when you arrive unless you have a Texas States Park Pass.  A Park Pass allows you and everyone in your car FREE day admission to every state park in Texas, and opens the doors to so many more adventures for you and your family!  The state park offers overnight camping sites and cabin rentals, but many people just visit for the day.

2.  It’s POPULAR!  Inks Lake is such a popular state park that they often close to day-use guest when it reaches capacity.  I’d suggest arriving early or booking your visit through Texas Parks and Wildlife Save the Date, which assures you day-entrance into the park, or staying overnight in the park.


3.   The Park Store sells ice, t shirts, snacks and has an air compressor which you can use to air up your inner-tubes, rafts or giant flamingo floats!  The park also rents kayaks.  If you have your own kayak, it’s a great place to park and put-in, and paddle over to the Devil’s Watering Hole, which is set in a roped-off, wake free section of the lake!

4.  Parking is limited at the Devil’s Watering Hole Swim Area.  Arrive early, car pool if possible and don’t park in an unmarked parking area.  You will get a ticket or possibly even towed if you are blocking other cars.

5.  Restrooms!  There is a clean restroom and showers located right at the Devil’s Watering Hole Parking area.  Yay, these make me so happy!  The restrooms and the showers don’t have soap, so bring your own to shower off after your swim.  We usually just leave our towel, soap and a change of clothes in the car, and grab it on our way to the showers.

6.  Getting There   It is a short hike down to the watering hole, maybe a 1/3 of a mile.  You’ll want to wear shoes, and condense a little to only carry what you really need.  I suggest a small soft-sided ice chest you can carry (no glass or alcohol), sunscreen, and just what you need for swimming.  If the walk down isn’t your thing, go back to the store and rent one of the kayaks to paddle down.


7.  There are plenty of places to sit your stuff along the water, and it’s all shaded.  Some people like to hike up farther and get a place in the rocks, too.  I like the shade.

8.  Shoes.  The rocks in the water just hurt if you’re barefoot.  I suggest some good watershoes.  They sell some at the park store, or I really like the cheap ones at Walmart just as much as my Tevas.

9.  Swimming  There are NO lifeguards on duty, and it’s DEEP, so be prepared!  There are lots of rocks in the water, and drop offs.  So don’t forget life jackets for younger children and weak swimmers.   It’s a steep climb up the rocks to go cliff diving, but definitely worth it!


10.  Dogs are welcome!  Leashed dogs are welcome in the park and at the Watering Hole!


11.  It’s Fun Anytime!  We do visit often, all year long.  After a rain, there are little falls running off of Valley Spring Creek to explore, and you can hike the Devil’s Backbone around the lake.  There are many natural springs running in the lake, and I’ve always heard rumors of hot springs, attributing to how it got it’s name, but I’ve never been able to find one.  I’ll happily keep searching, though!


More Things To Do in Burnet, Texas


Longhorn Caverns State Park offers a chance to go inside Texas to tour the beautiful geologic formations.  This cavern is full of history, serving as a hide out for cowboys, shelter for Native Americans, a speakeasy during prohibition and so much more!

Vanishing Texas River Cruise takes you on tours of beautiful Lake Buchanan to see the waterfalls and in search of the nesting bald eagles that live on the lake November – March.


Reverend Jim’s Dam Pub makes some amazing cheeseburgers in the shade of the Lake Buchanan Dam, the largest multi-arch dam in the world!

Happy Scoops Ice Cream is my FAVORITE ice cream shop in the state, and I love their flavors, made daily! The banana, made with real bananas, and the sweet cream are my all-time favorites!

Inks Lake State Park

3630 Park Road 4 West, Burnet

Click HERE to visit their website.

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