Spring Lake (Aquarena)

3 Responses to “Spring Lake (Aquarena)”

  1. snagel says:

    Posted by ScubaShawn123 on ScubaBoard

    Aquarena Saturday May 2


    May 2nd

    Aquarena Center
    Spring Lake
    San Marcos, Texas

    Surface to 27′ – 70*

    Outside temperature 80*

    Vis – 50’+

    Note; low flow rate (the drought condition) is causing Science Diving to execute Level 1 low impact work to keep some amount of visibility available to the glass bottom boat tour schedule.

  2. snagel says:

    Trip Report: Aquarena Springs 11/16/09
    Original Post by Divalicious on ScubaToys



    Ok, this is NOT anywhere near as exotic a destination as some on here, but…

    My hubby and I are fairly new to diving. A few weeks ago, we were certified / authorized to dive at Aquarena Springs in San Marcos, Tx and just took a short weekend trip to do our first “volunteer dive” this past weekend.

    We had a really nice, relaxing time. It is a very enjoyable weekend trip for those in Texas or nearby- especially for new divers. The diving may not be Cozumel or Hawaii or Fiji, but it’s quite pretty.

    If you aren’t familiar with Aquarena Springs, the website is here: Aquarena Center : Texas State University Basically, it is a natural spring lake in San Marcos, Tx, located on the campus and maintained by Texas State University. There is a lot of history associated with the place, and it has the oldest Indian / archeology site as well as glass bottom boats and kayaks and a conservation center.

    San Marcos is in the Texas Hill Country, which is really pretty, with lots to do nearby that’s non-diving: antiques, wineries, scenic drive tours, near Austin and San Antonio.


    The diving at Spring Lake is definitely for those who enjoy the “slow lane” at times. It’s very shallow (25′ max) and relatively small. The water is always 70-72 degrees. So, you need a wetsuit. The visibility, however, is great. Sometimes it is as much as 100′, but when I’ve been there, it was less because of silt from other divers. That said, it’s still been a solid 30-40 feet in clear blue water. There’s enough fresh water stuff to see (bass, sunfish, turtles, the bubbling springs themselves at the bottom of the lake) to make it fun.

    Diving is also very regimented. I.e., since they are -very- conservation oriented, and adhere to federal conservation laws, you have to do an initial 2-day certification class that costs $230.00. The class itself was pretty cool, though, focusing mainly on conservation, buoyancy, and a bit of archeology and general history of the place. First dive of the class is a buoyancy / skill / obstacle course check-out, and the second is a swim through of the sites.

    The trade-off for the class, though, is that once certified, there are no park fees. The facilities and folks there are really nice. There’s easy dock entry and a very nice, convenient setup for showers and gear.

    Once certified, you have to dive under a reservation as a “volunteer diver.” They are pretty strict about not letting you dive without a reservaton and also strict about -where- you can dive while there. There are about 6-7 dive sites, separated by shallow “no dive” zones. The sites are relatively small, and when you arrive, they will assign you a site to go to and want you to stay pretty much in that site.

    Mainly, the strictness is due to the presence of the glass bottom boats since those suckers are silent and it is shallow… if you surface or swim around where they don’t know where you are…er… it can cause the boat divers some stress. They also make you wear a pretty horrid yellow jumpsuit over your wetsuit for visibility purposes.

    This trip, we decided to head out there on Wednesday. I shot an email to the diving coordinator and got a reservation for Saturday and Sunday. We drove up from Houston Saturday morning and got 3 dives in – one on Saturday afternoon and 2 on Sunday.

    We stayed with a friend nearby, but there are quite a few bed and breakfasts and even cheap motels in the area.

  3. snagel says:

    Spring Lake, San Marcos
    March 18

    Temp, same
    Vis, 50-60′
    Spring Flow, 270cfs

    Worked in Deep Hole and Arch Site this morning. Deep Hole is looking very good. Pete and me spent most of the time there clearing algae north of the main Spring. John was working cleaning the springs and floating Coontail SW of Fault Line. The hump between Deep Hole and Arch Site is still deep but has around 6″ of plant growth making it less defined looking from the Deep Hole side.

    Arch Site is a complete mess with algae. Problem is that there is just not quite enough of it to make clearing easy. Coontail is under control. To do a good job, scooters are needed. The lines are still in ragged shape and need to be removed and then replaced (there are currently two (2) sets of lines in place).

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.