Swimming Safely in Lakes, Rivers & Streams
Memorial Day is almost here, and with that marks the beginning of the summer recreation season. BSG would like to remind our customers about safe ways to enjoy the parks and rivers. BSG recommends that people of all ages and abilities use caution when swimming or boating.
Be Safe in the Water
- Life Looks Good On You—and so does a life vest! Before you dive in, put on a life vest. Remember, even the strongest swimmer can be pulled under by the strong river currents.
- Kids Don’t Float—but life vests do. Make sure your child wears a life vest. County ordinances require any child under 13 to wear a life vest before accessing any public waters. Bring a life vest to the river for each of your children.
- Be sure you are water competent for natural environments before swimming – this is not your home pool!
- Always enter unknown or shallow water feet first.
- Watch out for currents, waves, and underwater obstructions – they’re not just found in the ocean.
- Swim sober.
- Swim with a buddy.
- The water we swim in is rarely germ-free. Even when a lake or river looks clear, bacteria and microorganisms can still be present.
- Protect your health with a few steps to keep germs out of the water and off you:
- Keep it clean – stay out of the water if you feel ill; shower before you get in; have everyone get out to take bathroom breaks every hour; and don’t swallow the water.
- Healthy swimming habits for anyone enjoying lakes, rivers and waterways:
- Do not drink recreational water.
- Wash your hands or shower after swimming.
- Pay attention and follow any warning signs and postings. Do not access a water body if posted warnings indicate it is not safe to do so.
- Contact your healthcare provider if you have concerns regarding your health after swimming in recreational waters.
- Do not enter the water if you have cuts or open sores, as these are pathways for bacteria to enter your body.
- Avoid algae blooms
5 Best Rivers for Family Fun in Texas*
1. Garner State Park
Located on the Frio River, this state run park has all the amenities that most of the state run parks offer such as cabins, equipment rentals, hiking trails, fishing, and family events. One particularly interesting family event is “The Dance”. Family nightly dancing events are held every night and the music comes from a jukebox. An interesting fact about state parks is the Junior Ranger Program. Each park has a different “pack” that offers nature and science enhancing activities and chances at earning badges that require no previous experience.
2. Bandera City Park
Situated on the Medina River, this small town has self-proclaimed itself the “Cowboy Capital of the World”. There is no camping here, but there are a few RV sites and other lodging accommodations in town near the river. And, on the river here, only non-motorized watercraft and fishing are allowed.
3. Gruene Outpost Lodge
There are plenty of options when considering a stay near New Braunfels for tubing the Comal River. Consider the traditional family-friendly lodge, Gruene Outpost Lodge. This lodge is reasonably priced in the city of Gruene and close to New Braunfels, Schlitterbahn, and Natural Bridge Caverns. This area is known for its historically German roots, traditional food, entertainment, and shopping is centered on this culture. Gruene is also known for having the oldest dance hall in Texas.
4. Center Point
This town is located on the Guadalupe River close to Kerrville and Fredericksburg. There are a few river access places here. A popular destination for travelers is Dave’s Place, which offers a variety of activities and is also a bed and breakfast. There is an entrance to the river, which is Brinks Crossing off of Center Point Road, and it drops off at Government Crossing, which is off of FM 1350. As with any entrance, you should use caution as these trails are deemed a bit rougher and are more for an experienced outdoors enthusiasts. Another reason to visit Center Point is hunting. Buck Valley Ranch offers lodging as well as guide services with hunting.
5. Blanco State Park
Named after the Blanco River, this state park has a variety of accommodations and activities. The Ranger Programs are not as vast this year as the other state parks, but there are still all of the recreational and overnight options that are typically offered at state-run locations. There are no license requirements for fishing in Texas state parks, and Blanco is the ideal location for trout fishing. At this park, boats have to have motors. And, if you are planning a trip in May, the classic car show is featured here on the third Saturday.
* Articles from https://texashillcountry.com/five-best-rivers-texas/