View Full Version : Location Scout: Quiet Desert Swim Hole

Frank Petronio
16-Mar-2007, 07:26
I know this is a long shot but... I have dreams of shooting people in very calm water in the American Desert. I know some place like this must exist -- I want a natural desert background, but it could be associated with a cleanly designed in-ground pool (but the fencing would have to come down). But a natural rock formation with desert in the background would be ideal.

Yeah, naked people will be in the shot if that is a concern.

Basically I want really beautiful water that people can float on... not my lap pool ;-)

It also needs to be within a few hours of an airport, i.e. not 10 miles of hiking. Not that I wouldn't do it, but for the convenience of others.

I'd pay for the rental/fees/expenses of course. Thanks, Frank

Michael Graves
16-Mar-2007, 07:34
Go to Phoenix, Arizona. Rent a car and drive north to Lake Pleasant. Rent a boat from the pier and explore to your hearts content. You'll probably find enough naked people there that you don't have to bring a model. I think you'll find the desert scenery most pleasing as well. And if you get bored with naked women the striped bass fishing is pretty good, too.

Kirk Gittings
16-Mar-2007, 08:16
Isolated watering holes in the desert are usually pretty skanky from cattle, antelope, snakes and brackish water etc. Check out the previous National Geographic with Jack Dykingas spread on Big Bend. There is a site there that might work and since it is running water. It sould be more pleasent.

16-Mar-2007, 10:04
fly into Albuquerque, and either head east to Santa Rosa where there is Blue Hole, along with Conchas Lake. You could also drive a couple of hours north to Abiquiu Dam. You would have Georgia O'Keeffe country as your back drop. The water can be glass there as well.

Michael Gordon
16-Mar-2007, 10:09
Frank: there are loads of natural hot springs in the Eastern Sierra and Southwest that may fill your bill. Here's a couple of helpful books:


Matt Logue
16-Mar-2007, 10:23
Don't know if this is what you're looking for, but some of Richard Misrach's photos of Pyramid Lake in NV look pretty calm. Not exactly a waterhole, though...

Juergen Sattler
16-Mar-2007, 12:57

near Phoenix there are a number of lakes that might work for you - they are not swimming holes per se, but man-made lakes. Lake Pleasant is certainly an option - you would have desert landscape with lots of Saguaros.

There is also a chain of three beautiful lakes in the middle of nowhere, that are reachable by car, along the Apache Trail - they are Canyon Lake, Roosevelt Lake and I forgot what the one in the middle is called. I think Canyon Lake would be really neat as a photoshoot location. Look at a map - you would go frm Phoenix to Apache Junction (that's a town) and pick up the Apache trail there. Easy to get to and a very scenic drive. Rent a boat and find yourself a little island, or just a deserted shore and you have you backdrop. Water is very blue!

Bruce Schultz
16-Mar-2007, 12:59
Balmorrhea Springs near Fort Davis, Texas. Huge swimming pool with constant 65-degree water. Crystal clear, spring fed pool. Great for snorkeling. Swim with the fishes. I've stopped there in the dead of winter to get cleansed of West Texas grit.

Frank Petronio
16-Nov-2011, 07:02
bump - hey this is good stuff to know for planning - thanks for contributing

Richard M. Coda
16-Nov-2011, 07:22
Bartlett Lake northeast of Scottsdale/Carefree/Cave Creek. I'd let you use my pool but the wife wouldn't care for that and I can't take the fencing down.

There's also Watson Lake in Prescott... about 1.5 hours north of here, but really cold right now, as are all the deserts in winter.

16-Nov-2011, 07:49
bump - hey this is good stuff to know for planning - thanks for contributing

bumping your own 4+ year old thread :eek: har har har!

you move slow.

Joseph Dickerson
16-Nov-2011, 09:22
Hi Frank,

In the Owens Valley there is Dirty Socks Springs...oh never mind! ;)