Any time of the year is great time to visit one of Colorado's many mountain hot springs destinations, but with fall right around the corner, a dip in a warmer pool is definitely on our minds. There are many different kinds of springs, from full-size, human-made pools warmed by earthy waters, to out-of-the-way natural swimming and soaking areas cut right into the ground. As we slowly make our way into the fall, here's ten of our favorite places to get your mineral bath on.
10) Penny Hot Springs, Carbondale
A natural, rocky pool that sits alongside the Crystal River in Carbondale, Penny Hot Springs is publicly accessible and offers a great outdoor space to enjoy the healing geothermal waters. Easily accessible off of Highway 133 and a few hundred feet north of mile marker 55, the springs has its own little parking area (a wide spot in the road), but you might want to bring your own shovel to dig out a comfy spot in the water.
9) Yampah Spa, The Hot Springs Vapor Caves, Glenwood Springs
One of several healthful attractions situated around the Glenwood Springs area, Yampah Spa offers full-service spa options along with incredible geothermal stream baths in a beautiful, natural environment. The sub-level caves are dimly lit and calming, inviting guests to rest in its quiet, rocky rooms while enjoying the natural healing heat from the earth.
8) Rainbow Hot Springs, Weminuche Wilderness Area near Pagosa Springs
One of two springs in the Pagosa Springs area on our list, Rainbow Hot Springs is for the more adventurous bather. Accessible by foot just fifteen feet above the West Fork of the San Juan River, hikers can enjoy this 95 to 105 degree warm water oasis in a quiet and natural environment. Rainbow Hot Springs is best visited in the spring and fall seasons.
7) Cottonwood Hot Springs Inn & Spa, Buena Vista
With unbeatable views enveloping its calming pools, Cottonwood Hot Springs is a geothermal experience set within Old West-style surroundings. It offers large communal soaking areas with a lodge and campsites, as well as overnight stays in private cabins, each with their own, small hot springs pools.
6) Strawberry Park Hot Springs, Steamboat Springs
These 104 degree natural mineral pools are a state favorite, the focal point of a property that has many small cabins to offer visitors looking to stay a while. Take in lovely views of Colorado as you soak at Strawberry Park's expansive springs, which are open and enjoyed year-round. The pool is all ages during the day, but goes eighteen and up after sunset, when clothing is optional.
5) The Springs Resort & Spa, Pagosa Springs
Home to the world's deepest geothermal hot springs, this wonderland has multiple pools of varying sizes, temperatures and mineral compositions. These tubs and pools are spread out across a lovely property, some offering waterfall-like features and other calming spots for taking it all in. Spa services are also available, along with lodging within the vintage but updated Spring Motel building.
4) Salida Recreation & Hot Springs Aquatic Center, Salida
Built for play or relaxation, Salida Hot Springs offers a full-size, naturally heated indoor pool for swimming, and private pools for soaking. This recreation center and theraputic spa facility's pools are fed by hot mineral spring water collected underground and piped from eight miles up in the Rocky Mountains.
3) Hot Springs Lodge and Pool, Glenwood Springs
Home to the world's largest hot springs swimming pool, this Colorado institution has been wowing active swimmers and relaxation junkies for generations. The sandstone bathhouse features an Olympic-size pool for swimming fun and also offers lap lanes and aquatic aerobics classes. There's an adjoining pool with a slightly higher temperature made just for soaking — with plenty of room to stretch out year-round, during the day or under the stars.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
2) Iron Mountain Hot Springs, Glenwood Springs
Though the spring source itself is as old as the Rockies, the Iron Mountain Hot Springs is brand new, having just opened this past summer. With family-friendly and adult-oriented options, this beautiful property features quiet soaking pools in many mineral varieties as well as a big swimming area for all to enjoy. Situated along the Colorado River, this brand new spot offers cool mountain views and hot springs relaxation.
1) Mount Princeton Hot Springs Resort, Nathrop
The best of both worlds, Mount Princeton's location offers hot springs experiences with natural rocky pool surroundings as well as human-made pools — all heated by geothermal spring water. There's pools for fun (waterslide included!) as well as pools for relaxation and soaking in the healing properties of the mountain minerals. Mount Princeton is also equipped with gorgeous accommodations, making overnight stays a must at this Colorado natural springs gem.
Be my voyeur (or better yet, let me stalk you) on Twitter: @cocodavies