There are swimming holes so pristine and beautiful that you want to keep them secret. One of them is Vermonts Pikes Falls. The appeal besides the obscurity is the cooling depths of the flowing water. Though not large, the areas V-shaped pool is fed by four water falls that slosh down the mountains over boulders, sending a mist over swimmers. You cant swim laps, but the hole is substantial enough to keep you afloat even during the hottest days, when shallower streams run dry. Once youve bathed away the summer heat, you can stake out a spot on the stony shore and soak in the sun. The town of Jamaica, a bohemian place of art galleries and cafes, is only six miles northeast on Route 30. If you go, though, keep it quiet: In a place like this, 20 is a crowd.
Pikes Falls Road, Jamaica, Vt.
(Text: Diane Foulds; Photo: Wendy Maeda/Globe Staff)