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Dive in to New York State’s Best Swimming Holes this Summer

Published: Feb 27, 2014

In the middle of a Catskills forest, Rondout Creek pours through a rock gap to create a deep swimming hole. At Peekamoose Blue Hole, dappled light bounces off leafy canopies and swimmers submerge themselves in the cool waters like an invigorating summer baptism. This New York swimming hole also boasts many rocks for sunning, picnicking and most of all, for jumping. A lot of great ledges adorn the swimming area. Additionally, there is a rope swing available for the riskier crew. To get here: From Kingston, go west on RT 28. Pass the left turn for RT 28A. Go another 10 miles. Then in Boiceville, go left on RT 28A about 2 miles to West Shokan. Then at the intersection of RT 28A and RT 42 in West Shokan is a series of hanging wooden signs; the top one says "Town Offices", the bottom one says "Sundown". Turn right (southwest) on county RT 42, toward Sundown. Go about 10 miles on RT 42 until you see a large parking area on the right with a sign for the Peekamoose Mountain area. Park here and cross the road to the creek and walk back the way you came a short distance then down a short path to the creek. The swimming hole is here. 

While you're in the Catskills region... Enjoy golf, mountain biking or North America's longest zipline at Hunter Mountain, tap into your inner hippie at Bethel Woods, site of the 1969 Woodstock Music Festival, or try hang-gliding or paragliding. Visit www.visitthecatskills.com or call 1-800 882 2287

The gorgeous 12 foot high gorge walls make Shanty Brook an unforgettable place. A very secluded spot in the Adirondack Park, Shanty Brook is actually very difficult to find. And maybe that's part of its beauty. When you arrive here, you can tell this place hasn't been trampled by the masses. Large trees, rich with life, surround the brook and the 12 foot falls. To get here: Continue west on RT 8 past Fox Lair (above) about 2 miles or so more to the Shanty Brook parking area - a large lot (with separate in and out driveways) on the south (left)side of RT 8 (there is a long box-type guardrail on the north side at this point). Walk northeast (back the way you came) along the road, after the end of the guardrail - about 800 feet from the parking area - on the north side of RT 8 to a dirt road that goes toward the East Branch Sacandaga River. About 100 feet on this road look down at the river and see several cables going across the river and a steep path that goes down to the river bank; cross the river on the cables or by fording. Follow the trail on the other side of the river at the cables. You will soon be going up along the west bank of Shanty Brook. Follow this trail a bit more than 1 mile (sometimes a bit muddy - little streams to cross and a bit overgrown) and you will see a yellow ribbon an a branch where a side trail goes down to a waterfall. The deep pool is at the foot of this fall.

While you're in the Adirondacks region... Stay at a posh resort or lodge, take Whiteface Mountain's Cloudsplitter gondola to see panoramic views of the mountains and Ausable River, and if you're feeling athletic, mountain bike down the ski trails. Visit www.visitadirondacks.com.

Treman is a spectacular swimming hole located in Ithica that is extremely kid-friendly and fun for the entire family. They have a high dive at the foot of a natural waterfall that is unbelievable to see. In addition, they have a lifeguard on duty with safety as a key requirement. Also, there is a hike you can take along the "gorge trail," above the falls that leads you to Lucifer Falls. To get here: From Ithaca, go southwest on RT 96/13 about 8 miles (past Buttermilk Falls S.P.), follow signs to Robert H. Treman S. P.

While you're in the Finger Lakes region... Hike along lovely Buttermilk Falls, which cascades into a popular natural swimming pool, and explore the quaint historic town of Skaneateles, where an inviting town beach provides access to 16-mile long Skaneateles Lake. Visit www.fingerlakestravelny.com or call 1- 888-408-1693.

So grab your swimsuit, a towel, and a pair of water shoes, and jump in at some of our favorite swimming holes. 

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