** Update / June 2020 ** Town of Woodstock has closed Big Deep and Little Deep to the public.
Our kids are really into swimming, so in the summertime we like to check out and explore different places to swim. We were in the Saugerties area, and decided it was a great day to check out some swimming holes. After quick check online, we found the Big Deep and Little Deep swimming holes nearby in Woodstock, New York.
We had no problem finding the Big Deep using Google Maps, and there is even has a sign out along the road for it. The parking consists of unpaved roads and parking spots amongst the woods, and we were able to find one of a few remaining spots on a Saturday afternoon.
Once we parked, we got ready and headed to the trail that takes you to the Big Deep. It is pretty obvious where you are supposed to walk even though you can’t see the water from the parking area.
It isn’t a far walk at all and is an easy trail that ambles through the woods. It is just a minute or two before you are at the water.
We were there the first weekend in July 2018, and we weren’t impressed when we arrived. Of the swimming holes we have visited, they usually have pretty, clear, inviting water. This one unfortunately looked a bit muddy and murky.
There wasn’t much to do there as well. You can wade in or do a little swimming, but nowhere to jump in or really explore.
The kids didn’t want to go in the cloudy water either, even though they are pretty adventurous, so we decided to head out and try somewhere else.
We got ready to leave the Big Deep, and decided to see if Little Deep was any better.
We had no problem finding the Little Deep, and there was a parking lot located off the main road.
The Little Deep swimming hole area is pretty close to the parking area. You can see the bridge where the road passes over the river from just up the river where people are swimming.
We wandered along the stream a little bit to check out the different areas where people were in the water.
The Little Deep was much less crowded than the Big Deep.
The water was nicer than Big Deep, but still a bit cloudy.
There were some spots here where you could wade in up to your waist or so, but we didn’t see anywhere that you could jump in.
We decided to skip swimming at Little Deep as well, and tried heading up to Peekamoose Blue Hole, about 40 minuets away. Unfortunately, we found out that you have to get a permit 24 hours in advance.
See the DEC article here about the Peekamoose Blue Hole permit: https://www.dec.ny.gov/press/114042.html
I also read that the Big Deep and Little Deep will also be requiring permits, but as of early July 2018, we were able to park and use the swimming hole without a permit. (Read that article here in the Hudson Valley One).
~ plan on an alternate destination if these swimming holes are closed or full
~ wear water shoes! You never know what is in the water, from sharp rocks to broken glass – just a chance we don’t take
~ bring sunscreen, and bug repellent if it is bug season
~ you may want to bring a blanket to put down and some lunch for a picnic
~ don’t forget your towel