Are you an experienced diver?
Do you need to brush up on your skills?
Balmorhea Texas is a great place to go. The water is always between 72-76 degrees. The water is always clear. There are many different species of fish that are native only to Balmorhea. Balmorhea State Parked was opened in 1968. It was originally owned by the Reeves County Water Improvement District No 1. Construction was started in 1935 by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The pool was finished in 1941. The pool is 1 and ¾ acre body of water, has a natural bottom and is approximately 25 feet at its deepest portion. acres in size, has a natural bottom and is approximately 25 feet at its deepest portion. Water temperature in 72-76 degrees year round. This weekend it was 75 degrees.
The San Solomon Springs has several species unique to this freshwater area: Comanche Springs pupfish (Cyprinodon elegans) and the Pecos gambusia (Gambusia nobilis). There are also Mexican tetras, green sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus) and headwater catfish (Ictalurus lupus). Texas spiny softshell turtles and crawfish also inhabit the area.
Crayfish are crustaceans and have 5 pairs of legs, the first of which is modified to form their well-developed pincers.
The amphipods are also found in the pool, Gammarus pecos. They are omnivorous amphipods that are active at night. They feed on algae and organic debris, including carrion.
Channel catfish (Ictalurus puntatus) are the largest fish found in the pool. Channel catfish are found in a variety of aquatic habitats. Diets include fish, crayfish, insects, and plant material.
The Mexican Tetra (Astyanax fasciatus) invaded the United States by swimming up the Rio Grande and Pecos Rivers. Although it is native in North America, it has been introduced more broadly across the region through its use as bait. They are found in a variety of habitats, but are most commonly found schooling in pools.
The Comanche Springs Pupfish (Cyprinodon elegans) are unique to Balmorhea. They are sexually dimorphic in terms of coloration; males have a dark bar at the tip of their tail fin.
The Pecos gambusia (Gambusia nobilis) are abundant in springs and spring-fed creeks.
The Largespring Gambusia (Gambusia geiseri) was introduced from San Marcos Springs during the 1930s and has established successful populations. They are similar in size to the Pecos gambusia and they are difficult to tell apart.
In the low-salinity waters flowing out of the San Solomon Springs in Balmorhea, the largespring gambusia are most abundance and are about 90% of the population.
The most common turtle found in the pool at Balmorhea is the Texas as Spiny Soft-shell Turtle, Apalone spinifera emoryi. Since they are reptiles, spiny soft-shell turtles must come to the surface to breathe.
There are different types of accommodations. They have cabins present on the grounds so you can stay in a warm room in the winter and a cool room in the summer with a comfortable bed, a TV and a private bathroom. Or if you like to camp, there are camp sites with and without electricity. All campsites have water available.
There are warm showers and bathroom facilities are by the area where we dive, so that when you get out of the water, if it is cold, you can shower off in a warm shower and change.
There are some trails to follow if you have the energy after your dives.
There are many unique birds too. Over the past several years I have seen everything from a great horned owl to a kingfisher.
All of these characteristics and creatures make for a fun, interesting dive. I never get tired of diving there. I often find myself just breathing underwater and watching the wildlife. In the winter, there are also diving ducks in the spring. They make for interesting entertainment.
The winter sky also throws shadows over the water, giving it sometimes an eerie appearance. We are going back in December.
Let us know if you want to join us.
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Looking forward to diving with you in Balmorhea!