6 (More) Stellar Hot Springs in Colorado

Hot Springs in Colorado.
Hot Springs in Colorado. Eli Duke
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After our first roundup of 6 Stellar Hot Springs in Colorado came out, we learned that people love a good hot springs pretty much any time of year. Whether it’s after a long day on the slopes or a long day summiting a peak, there’s no bad time to enjoy the relaxing and rejuvenating waters. So to soothe everyone’s hankering to find the best places to soak, we’ve decided to showcase a few more of Colorado’s hot spots.

But keep these on the down low—they’re somewhat of a local secret.

1. Joyful Journey

Tap your sacred inner energy when you head to Joyful Journey, a special spot at the northern end of the San Luis Valley in southern Colorado. The closest towns are Villa Grove to the north and Moffat to the south, but there’s really not much around—except expansive views across the sagebrush flats of the valley up to 14,000-foot Sangre de Cristo peaks. You’re welcome to visit for just the day, but why not stay awhile? Overnight options range from comfy hotel rooms or cozy yurts to basic tipis outfitted with cots. You can also bring your tent or RV and set up camp. Three pools range in temperature from 98 to 108 degrees, and note that clothing is optional on Wednesday nights.

2. Iron Mountain Hot Springs

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Iron Mountain Hot Springs in Glenwood Springs is fairly new on the scene, having opened in 2015. And they aren’t kidding around, with 16 pools tucked along the banks of the Colorado River, surrounded by stunning mountain views. Window-shop before you choose from pools with varying heat, one with a tumbling waterfall that pounds your back, or two with stones that feel good on your feet. If you bring kids, watch them frolic in the cool freshwater pool while you relax in a hot, jetted tub. A bathhouse and café enhance your stay, with showers, sandwiches, soft drinks, and even adult beverages.

3. Avalanche Ranch Cabins & Hot Springs

Avalanche Ranch is tucked in Redstone, a tiny town in the Crystal River Valley, where hot water naturally bubbles up from the ground. Three cascading pools on this peaceful property are open seven days a week for guests who bunk in one of the quaint cabins or covered wagons on-site (Yes, you read that right—the covered wagons have room for two). Three off-site houses also have dibs on dips. If you’re not staying but want to stop in for a soak, you’ll need to make a reservation in advance. The pools are closed during the day on Wednesdays, but open at 5 pm for overnight guests.

4. Dunton Hot Springs

Prepare to burn up a stack of Ben Franklins to stay at Dunton Hot Springs, an all-inclusive resort in the San Juan Mountains, southwest of Telluride. Smoke drifts from chimneys of historic log cabins in this restored ghost town, which is anything but creepy. Think posh yet rustic—poshtic? The 12 cabins plus one luxury tent range in size from one bedroom to five, some with a private pool or shower outside. It’s a cluster of the Old West, nestled in a broad meadow surrounded by pine- and aspen-covered hills. Oh, and the pools. They’re dreamy, too. Some in a 19th-century bathhouse, some outside, and others scattered around the property—even riverside.

5. Orvis Hot Springs

Orvis Hot Springs is the place for you if you like to bathe in the buff—although suits are suitable, too. This clothing-optional sanctuary offers seven soaking options, ranging from rock-lined outdoor pools with tumbling waterfalls to private indoor tubs. The hottest one, aptly named the Lobster Pot, is a whopping 108–114 degrees. And—rare in Colorado—you’ll even find a smoker’s pond, although we’re not sure if it’s 420 friendly. Stop in for the day, book a room or pitch a tent on site, or stay in nearby Ridgway.

6. Penny Hot Springs

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Nestled along the banks of the Crystal River outside of Carbondale, the Penny Hot Springs are so off the radar that beta and photos are scarce. They’re just an unassuming series of steamy, rock-piled pools with nothing flashy except the view, a granite section of canyon called the Narrows. Drive out of Carbondale south on Highway 133 and look for a large parking lot on the east side just north of mile marker 55.

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