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  • Writer's pictureTamara Schneider

Kentucky Summer Cooldown

Updated: Jul 2, 2021

By Braxton Caudill

It's official! Summer officially started on June 20th and we are ready to celebrate here in Kentucky. Everyone has their own seasonal preference, and I am personally a huge fan of summertime. School is out, the trees are lusciously green, and everyone seems to have a little more pep in their step! One of the classic signs that it's finally summer in the Bluegrass State is when an 80-degree day feels more like 100. That humidity is so hard to combat sometimes, but I’ve come up with a few ways to stay cool this summer!

Going to the pool is the most tried-and-true method to cooling down, but it gets repetitive, and public pools are always too crowded and over-chlorinated. That's just not it! Let's think a bit more adventurous, fun, and outside the box!

Lake Day

No matter where you may reside, there is a lake in this state close enough for you to revel in! Kentucky is home to 45 major lakes across its 40,000 square mile landmass, each of which can be enjoyed by swimming from the shore or by boat. You may be thinking, “Well Braxton, I don’t own a boat”. Fear not because you can for a day! Most lakes with at least a medium-sized marina offer pontoon boat rentals at fair daily rates. I have rented pontoons at a few different lakes and the daily price was never more than $120. When split between a group of friends the price was very manageable. Marinas often carry rental boats for any occasion - 6 person occupancy, 10 person occupancy, single deckers, double deckers and even ones with slides! Because lakes are so large, their temperature typically stays fairly constant during the summer, not too cold, and perfect for swimming! My preferred lake is Cumberland, near the south central portion of the state.

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Creek Float

Floating down a river or creek is such an underrated way to soak up the summer sun without overheating. You can go to Walmart and buy a cheap round tube, a dual-person tube or even an affordable kayak. As long as it floats it’ll work! Then, all you do is choose a local running water source like a creek or river, grab your favorite six pack, and get floating! A bit of research is necessary to map out your excursion route, but this activity is so easy on the wallet that it is worth the planning time. You should always check water levels and flow rate to make sure it is safe to be floating. If you are a first timer and want someone else to plan a route for you, Canoe Kentucky is an awesome option! They can outfit you with kayaks, guides and transportation from your take-out point. Floating down the creek provides you with ample swimming opportunities, and because its running water the temperature is always cool. I love floating down the Elkhorn Creek. It is definitely a natural gem of Kentucky.

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Swimming Holes

Believe it or not, Kentucky has naturally occurring swimming pools that are open to anyone who wants to go! These geographical landmarks are typically filled with filtered rain, making the water clear, cool and comfortable. The greatest aspect of these pools is that they are accompanied by beautiful sights and sounds, much more peaceful than the local pool in your area! I have yet to visit any of the well known swimming holes in the area, but Clifty Creek is at the top of my bucket list.

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No matter where you decide to cool off this summer, take time to really savor the season. And if you have a favorite watering hole, let us know!


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