Online Services

Our Government

News and Events

Maps, Facts & Stats

State & Federal

Water Mine Family Swimmin' Hole

ATTENTION!PLEASE NOTE: This is an update for Monday, March 2, 2015.

In weather-related emergencies, Park Authority programs, classes and events at park facilities and schools will be canceled based upon the closing decision of Fairfax County Public Schools. Due to inclement weather, Fairfax County School facilities are closed today, therefore:


  • FCPA events, scheduled classes and group fitness drop-in classes held at RECenters or other FCPA facilities are canceled.
  • FCPA winter camps/workshops held at RECenters or FCPA facilities are canceled.
  • Preschool programs at Lee District and Spring Hill will not operate.

However, RECenters and other FCPA facilities are open normal business hours.

The Water Mine Family Swimmin' Hole offers more than an acre of slides, flumes, sprays, showers, floatables and interactive play features, circled by Rattlesnake River with a 2.5 mile per hour current that gently nudges tubes along. A bit of the old west is recreated here. Kids careen off covered wagons, float on rattlesnakes and dash through showers tipped from water-filled ore carts.

The centerpiece is Pete's Peak, a craggy mountain dotted with boarded up mine shafts and tunnels. Twin gang slides - Big Pete and Little Pete - jut from the mountain, giving youngsters a thrill ride they'll return to again...and again...and again.

Mountain and slides are named for Pete the Prospector. According to Lake Fairfax legend, he staked his claim there in 1849, searching for gold. Sadly for Pete, his years of digging found only water. But now, with The Water Mine, the Park Authority is turning Pete's worthless old strike into the golden fun of summer.

This is an accessible facility.

While the Water Mine's attractions are designed for elementary-aged children, there's something here for everyone. Tenderfoot Pond, with its pint-sized slides and gentle bubblers, gives toddlers a perfect place for water play. Teenagers can join a game of water volleyball, and everyone will enjoy going with the flow in a tube on Rattlesnake River.

The Watermine
Click to view slideshow

Season Passes

Why buy a season pass?

  • Save more than 60% on daily admission prices (based on 1x per week visit). The more you visit, the more you save.
  • Experience quicker entry.
  • Enjoy unlimited rides on the carousel and tourboat.
  • Get exclusive passholder access on select Wednesday evenings.
  • Purchase guest passes for daily admission at a discounted rate.
Water Mine Logo Water Mine Season Pass


Group Rates

Weekday Group Rates

The Water Mine is a great place to bring your summer camp or day care for a weekday visit, Monday through Friday (except Holidays).

Groups can be scheduled by calling the park office at least 2 weeks in advance at 703-471-5414 x17. Dates fill quickly so plan your visit early.  Reservations for summer typically begin March 1.

Discounted rates are available for scheduled groups of 20 or more persons.  The group rate is $10.00 per person in the group. A partial payment of $200 which pays for the first 20 people in the group is required when making a reservation. When making multiple reservations a partial payment is required to reserve each reservation date.

Site Rentals

Water Mine Canopy Rental (Area F)

The large tent at the far end of the facility is available for rent. Contact the park manager at 703-471-5415.

The large blue and white canopy at the far end of the facility is available for rent. This area has a maximum capacity of 150 people. This area is available only on non-holiday weekends. No electricity is available.  Amplified sound, glass, and alcohol are not permitted.
Check availability and submit a rental request.

Groups renting Area F will receive the group rate of $10.00 per person. A partial payment of $200.00 which pays for the first 20 people in the group is required for Area F when making a reservation through the Picnic Reservation staff. The remaining admissions are due on the day you visit the Water Mine. Admission will be charged for all persons in the group. Reservations need to be made at least 2 weeks in advance by calling 703-324-8732.

Water Mine Funbrella Rental


The Funbrella is a large umbrella shaped shade structure with 5 picnic tables located inside the dining area of the Water Mine. This area has a maximum capacity of 40 people. This area is available on non-holiday weekends and weekday evenings (excluding season pass holder nights). No electricity is available. Amplified sound, glass, and alcohol are not permitted.

For $99.00 you may select from an available pre-established 3 hour timeslot for your event. Reservations can be made by calling 703-471-5414 x17 at least two weeks in advance beginning May 1.

Groups renting the Funbrella will receive the group rate of $10.00 per person. Admission will be charged for all persons in the group.


Calendar & Hours of Operation

Pool Safety and Bathroom Breaks: 10 minute breaks will be called at 10 minutes of each hour, except the first and last hours of operation.


  • $14.50 - Over 48" tall - Weekends & Holidays 
  • $13.50 - Over 48" tall - Monday through Friday (except holidays)
  • $11.25 - Under 48" tall
  • 2 years old and under - FREE
  • $8.25 - After 5 p.m. Monday through Friday (except holidays)
  • Group Rates
  • Download $2 Off Coupon

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the busiest days and times at the Water Mine?

A: Friday through Sunday are the busiest times to visit the Water Mine. The best times to arrive are at 10am or between the hours of 2pm and 3pm. If you are arriving at other times, you may experience a wait of up to 45 minutes. This does not include periods of time during which the Water Mine has reached its patron capacity.

Q: What is the Water Mine's inclement weather policy?

A: The Water Mine is required to clear the green fenced in area of all patrons for a minimum of 30 minutes after thunder is heard or lightning is spotted.

Q: Can I bring my own food into the Water Mine?

A: Yes, outside food is allowed at the Water Mine, provided that it is eaten in the designated areas. Items that are prohibited are glass items and alcohol.

Q: Do you have lockers at the Water Mine?

A: Yes, the lockers are located in the breezeway area between the men's bathroom and the lifeguard office.

Q: My child is under 48 inches, but is an excellent swimmer. Do they have to be accompanied by an adult?

A: Yes, they still need to be accompanied by an adult on Big Pete, the Rattlesnake River, and are not allowed on Box Canyon Crossing. This is an industry-wide standard that we adhere to at the Water Mine.

Q: What are the bathing suit requirements at the Water Mine?

A: Appropriate swim wear is required at all times. The following are Prohibited:

  • cut off shorts
  • rivets or exposed metal on swimsuits
  • thong swimsuits
  • workout apparel (i.e. sports bras, spandex shorts)

Q: Are lifejackets available for use at the Water Mine?

A: Yes, lifejackets are available for use at the First Aid tent. We have 3 different sizes and they are first come, first serve. Patrons are strongly encouraged to use our lifejackets rather than their own.

Q: How deep does the water get?

A: The deepest point in the pool is only 4 feet deep.

Q: Does the Water Mine have a baby pool?

A: Yes, Tenderfoot Pond is located to the right of the beach entrance to the river.

Q: Is there a family changing room?

A: Yes, the family changing room is located in the breezeway, between the men's bathroom and the lifeguard office, across from the lockers.

Q: Does the Water Mine have advanced ticket sales?

A: No, daily admissions can only be purchased on the day that you plan on attending. The Front Desk opens for sales at 10am.

Q: Can I bring my own raft?

A: No, for your own safety only rafts/tubes that are provided by the facility are allowed to be used.

Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

ADA Accessibility | Website Accessibility
Awards | FOIA | Mobile | Using this Site | Web Disclaimer & Privacy Policy | Get Adobe Reader
Official site of the County of Fairfax, Virginia, © Copyright 2013

Website Feedback Website Feedback    Globe with various flags representing Web site language translations   Language Translations

Return to Graphic Version