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With an abundance of water and granite, swimming holes in the Texas Hill Country are bound to be as plentiful as spring bluebonnets. Out of the numerous hot spots for cooling off, the Kingsland Slab is the one favored by locals.
What makes the Slab even better for visitors is that this paradise is completely free.
This section of the Llano River, on FM 3404 about 2 miles west of RR 1431, can be crowded on the weekends and holidays. Don’t let that deter you: There is a wealth of space to find some privacy. On a weekday, the Slab can be quite relaxing while listening to the trickling water and soaking up the sun.
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The Kingsland Slab was created by a huge outcropping of pink granite beneath the Llano River. Visitors will find plenty of natural swimming and wading holes, sandy beaches, and smooth rocks for laying out.
The range of depths at the Slab is incredible. Shallow, sandy-bottomed areas are perfect for the kids, while deep areas are big enough for a full-body dip. Miniature waterfalls and rushing rapids span the granite outcrops.
The Slab is most popular near the FM 3404 crossing, but you can hike and explore for miles in either direction. However, it is important to stay on the waterbed: Step too far off and you could be found trespassing. We also recommend water shoes for traction on the slippery rocks.
Because of its wealth of open spaces, the Slab has plenty of places to spread out and relax. Bring plenty of sunscreen, water, snacks, a towel, a cooler, folding chairs, and whatever else you want to carry to make a day of it.
Whatever you do take, please be sure to pack in what you pack out. Trash bins are there to be used instead of the sand and river way. There are no facilities at the Slab; keep it beautiful for everyone so it remains a favorite.
The Kingsland Slab is not just for swimming, either. Fishing enthusiasts delight at this spot of the Llano River because of great opportunities for rod, spear, bow, and net fishing.
Year-round, sport anglers can catch a variety of freshwater fish: largemouth bass, Guadalupe bass, bluegill, perch, catfish, carp, and the occasional crappie.
The Kingsland Slab is also known for its massive migration of white bass each fall. In fact, the Slab is one of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s top three places for white bass anglers. Here you will find huge concentrations of this schooling fish to catch and release — or take home for a tasty dinner.
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The current river flow is important to fishermen and kayakers. Know what to expect by viewing the Lower Colorado River Authority’s river report before trekking to the Slab.
To reach the Kingsland Slab, drive RR 1431 west and north through Kingsland then turn west on FM 3404. Drive a couple miles until you reach the Llano River.