Some like it hot. There’s something to be said for heat. Around the United States there are hot springs that can do a body good. Hot springs are said to help blood circulation, improve digestion and be good for detoxing. Then there’s the magnesium and potassium in the water that helps promote healthy skin. To top it off, most hot springs are in surrounded by scenery that soothes the soul. Ready to turn up the heat? Here are a few hot spots.
Terwilliger Hot Springs, Lane County, Oregon
The Willamette National Forest is where you’ll find these geothermal pools. You’ll feel like you’re in another world long before you’ve dipped your toe in the waters at Terwilliger Hot Springs (also known as Cougar Hot Springs). The quarter-mile trail that leads to the clothing-optional hot springs is surrounded by old-growth forest, and the pools themselves are flanked by ferns and fir trees. Six soaking pools are laid out in a step ladder-like pattern; the pools are fed by a spring above the topmost pool, so you’ll enjoy progressively cooler water as the pools descend—from 112 degrees Fahrenheit in the uppermost pool to 85 degrees in the lowest pool. This hot spring is in wine country the Willamette Valley region.
Sol Duc Hot Springs, Port Angeles, Washington
Find peace and tranquility in Sol Duc Hot Springs. There are three natural mineral hot spring soaking pools, with temperatures ranging from 99 to 104 degrees. The pools are fed from rain and melted snow that seep through cracks in sedimentary rocks and mix with the gasses from cooling volcanic rocks, and then rise via surface cracks. Keep the chilled vibe going with a massage before or after your soak. The scenery will work wonders too. Sol Duc Hot Springs is located in the Olympic National Park, the most northwestern point in the contiguous U.S. There are more than 922,000 acres of preserved wilderness with three distinct ecosystems: coastal, rainforest and sub-alpine. The hot springs offer rustic cabins. Hiking is plentiful, including the legendary Sol Duc Falls Trail.
Granite Hot Springs, Jackson, Wyoming
How can you go wrong with granite cliffs towering thousands of feet overhead on both sides of a magnificent canyon? The 104-degree Granite Hot Springs are located just above Granite Creek Falls and set amongst enormous spruce, fir and pine tree forest alongside Granite Creek. You can stay at the Togwotee Mountain Lodge, hike and wildlife watch, be it eagles or black bears. Hop on a horse, whitewater raft or simply kick back for a scenic float trip.
Carson Hot Springs, Carson City, Nevada
The Carson Hot Springs have bragging rights as they are said to have the second purest water in the world. Natural mineral water flows out of the ground at 121 degrees. Air spray and evaporative cooling are used to lower this water temperature when pools are drained and refilled during each day. There are nine mini spas that offer privacy. Individual room pool temperatures range from 95-104 degrees and vary according to the natural flow of the spring. Word is that Mark Twain used to frequent the hot springs when he lived there. Carson City is nearby while Lake Tahoe and Reno, giving you plenty of ways to add to your vacay.
Iron Mountain Hot Springs, Glenwood Springs, Colorado
Mountains views and being on the banks of the Colorado River make for a winning combination. There are 16 soaking pools filled with pure mineral water, no added chemicals. The pools range in temperature from 98 to 108 degrees. The water is constantly flowing through the pools, so each is completely refreshed with new mineral water every two hours. These pools are in a quiet zone with spa music playing in the background. To maintain the Zen, children five and younger are not allowed and older children must be accompanied by an adult. There is a freshwater family pool with a jetted whirlpool where all ages are welcome. Glenwood Springs is famous for its water, whether it’s the hot springs that inspired its name or the Colorado and Roaring Fork Rivers that provide excellent whitewater rafting, kayaking and gold medal fishing. There are miles and miles of trails for hiking and biking, plus horseback riding, ATV rides, camping and more. It’s also home to award-winning restaurants and breweries.
River Oaks Hot Springs Spa, Paso Robles, California
Here you get a two-fer, unwind and imbibe. The River Oaks Hot Springs Spa is in the rolling hills and vineyards of Paso Robles in central California. Soak in your private vineyard-view mineral tub made with locally made bath salts infused with Paso Zinfandel while sipping on a flight of locally made wines and indulging on a gourmet cheese plate. Aren’t you ready for this?
Jemez Hot Springs, Jemez Springs, New Mexico
About an hour north of Albuquerque is the tiny village of Jemez Springs. There are several natural geothermal, mineral-based hot spring pools in the middle of the Virgin Mesa. Complete with five outdoor, natural turquoise-colored, hot spring pools with over 17 healing minerals in the water, bask in the healing waters. Located outdoors along the Jemez River, the springs offers accompanying views of the red painted Virgin Mesa mountain range.
Moccasin Springs, Hot Springs, South Dakota
Moccasin Springs is a natural mineral spa on the historical ruins of the Hot Springs Hotel. It’s been bubbling for more than 140 years. The hot springs filtered through a natural red rock formation flow into a moccasin-shaped pool. The site, known as the “original Indian Springs that made Hot Springs famous,” has been rebuilt around the original structures, keeping as much history as possible. Moccasin Springs offers four outdoor, natural mineral spring pools and two hot pools. There are other cool things to do in Hot Springs, like The Mammoth Site, an active paleontological dig site that has the largest concentration of mammoth remains in the world, with a current count of 61. The Angostura State Recreation Area is 36-miles of shoreline, with beaches, boating, fishing and swimming.