Salida Colorado Area Hot Springs: Time to Soak

Real Estate Agent with Bradfield Ramsey Group

Salida Colorado Hot Springs: Nice soak on a cool November Day

Salida Colorado Area Hot Springs: Time to Soak

Salida has many hot springs to choose from that range from one minute from town to 1 hour and all are different. Here is a snippet about all 6 of them.






Southern Colorado Hot SpringsStarting farthest away is "Dakota Hot Springs", affectionately known as "The Well" by locals. it is 1 hour from Salida, heading east on HWY 50. It is out of town about 3 miles on the south side of the road. The well is one big pool that ranges from about 3 feet to 5 feet. In the middle is the cannibal pot (really hot water) and a fountain/shower head that is glorious. Because of the shower head, the place is full of steam and quite magical. Clothing is optional except Tuesdays when it is mandatory. We go at night and you really cannot see much with the steam.

Salida Colorado nearby Hot Springs: Valley ViewNext is Valley View Hot Springs. Valley view is the most rustic, private and out of the way. It is a series of pools with views over the valley and towards the Sangre de Cristo. They have natural rock ponds you can hike to, a pool and a sauna. The top pond is a about a 20 minute hike, which guarantees you more privacy. The views are incredible. This pool is clothing optional.




Southern Colorado Hot SpringsNext closest is Joyful Journey. Head south from Salida about 40 miles on HWY 285. When you see HWY 117, turn south. It is about a mile down the road. Joyful Journey has 3 pools, warm, medium and hot. The photo on is from the hot pool looking out over the Sangre de Cristo mountains. This is generally a quiet crowd which creates an almost a meditative experience. We spend our time moving from pool to pool to adjust our body temperature.



Southern Colorado Hot SpringsNext is Cottonwood Springs Hot Springs. Cottonwood is outside of Buena Vista, about 28 miles north of Salida. Since they are in the national forest, they are prohibited from upgrading their facility but it still is a great place to soak. They have natural stone hot pools and a couple of private soaking pools. Children under 16 must vacate the pool after 6 which gives families access during the day and adults access at night. 


Salida Colorado Nearby Hot Springs: Mt PrincetonMount Princeton Hot Springs is next, about 25 miles north of town near Nathrop, Colorado. Mount Princeton hot springs runs along Chalk creek which has hot water all along the bank. Guests can meander down by the creek, creating their own pools by adjusting the rocks to get the water just right, which is what we love to do. There are two very large public pool, one of which is cool enough for lap swimming. In addition, there are many private pools for guests staying at Mount Princeton. Of all, the facilities, here are the best. They have a great restaurant, conference facilities, and lots of rooms, all of which have been recently rennovated. It is a classy place to soak and yet still affordable for locals. 


Salida Colorado Hot SpringsSalida Hot Springs Aquatic Center. Home sweet home. Salida Hot Springs and Pool are right here in town. This is where we go when we want a quick hot water fix. Lots of folks in town do season memberships to the Salida Pool. The pool is used by the local swim team, exercise groups, kayak classes and more so it it often lively. They have a separate public soaking pool and a couple of nice private tubs. All are indoor. Outdoor soaking pools are in the plans so stay tuned!

Is Salida or the area calling you?

Salida Colorado Real Estate

Down Valley Real Estate (Howard, Coaldale, Cotopaxi and Texas Creek)

Buena Vista and Nathrop Real Estate

Salida Colorado Area Hot Springs: Time to Soak

Posted by


Paula Bradfield, PhD, GRI, EPro, CIAS, CDPE, Realtor
Phone: 719.221.6108 | Email:  

Keller Williams Performance

Your Salida Colorado Realtor Team





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Specializing in homes and land in the Colorado river towns of Salida, Howard, Coaldale, Cotopaxi, Nathrop, Poncha Springs  and Buena Vista, I am here to work for you as you buy or sell your home or land. 


It is not just about buying in this area. it is a statement about lifestyle. Our residents generally are active people, whether it involves horses (my passion), white water rafting, cross county or downhill skiing, hiking, mountain biking, or Contra dancing. Some prefer quiet sunrises, strolls through town and time in one of our fabulous coffee shops or restaurants. Whatever the style, folks appreciate this area for its charm and beauty.


Want to get more information on available homes or condos in the Central Colorado River Valleys? Go to SouthernColoradoHomesonline to search the area listings by town, zip code or county.


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Our Colorado Mountain river communities: A Snapshot


Salida ColoradoSalida:  As quoted in the 2004 edition of Outside Magazine, Salida is “Sweetly unpretentious” as they ranked it as one of their “Dream Towns and Adventure Hideouts.” You might agree. Our community of 6,500 (9700 counting the surrounding homes) is surrounded by Forest Service and BLM lands, a haven for bicyclists, campers, folks who love to fish, hikers, skiers, nature photographers and hunters. It is a lovely natural setting with several converging mountain ranges  (We have15 peaks surrounding us that reach over 14,000 feet in elevation).

 We are known for being the Banana Belt of Colorado and this area is known as one of the Colorado River Towns. The Arkansas River winds its way through the Arkansas Valley, through downtown Salida and more; creating an invitation to rafters, kayakers, fishers, and “beach lovers” alike.

 Salida’s charming downtown area had the largest historical downtown district in Colorado. We have blocks and blocks of Victorian and other historic buildings. Because so many folks also come here to play, we have many of the advantages of a smaller resort town: great restaurants, 22 art galleries, fabulous boutiques, outdoor sportswear stores, and an array of shops for music, kitchen, sports, natural foods, children, books, knitters, and quilters.



 Real Estate in Salida CO


Poncha Springs COPoncha Springs: Poncha Springs is a small Salida “bedroom community” (population of 474 but a few thousand when you consider the outlying neighborhoods and ranches). Because it was surrounded  by hot springs (99 nearby) and had a strong early  influence of Spanish culture, the community became known as  Poncho (meaning cape and warmth) Springs. In 1924, the town officially became Poncha Springs.


Real Estate in Poncha Springs


 Howard ColoradoHoward: Howard, part of what is known as Pleasant Valley, is nestled along the Arkansas River as it snakes its way from Salida to Canon City. Some of the early settlers in the area were prospectors (some still pan for gold in the tributaries of the Arkansas).  Besides gold and silver, rhyolite, travertine, and limestone were sought after. Just a bit north of Howard is a tiny community of Wellsville where the locals used to soak on their time off in the natural hot pools. The area became more populated when the Rio Grande Railroad came through. Today, Howard is a charming, quiet ranch community and “bedroom Community” for folks who work in Salida. Many avid fly fishing folks have 2nd homes here. I love this valley.


Real Estate in Howard CO  


Coaldale Colorado


Coaldale: Coaldale, a tiny community just SE of Howard opens up into a lovely, meadow-like area with many horse properties, ranches, and folks who like the open meadows and surrounding mountains. It got its name from being called Charcoal Valley. In the early days, the Pinon Pines were burnt in beehive kilns to turn them into coals used for the silver smelters in Leadville Co and Pueblo CO. Some of the early kilns can still be seen. Every valley in Coaldale has a creek in it and with just a few minutes drive to the west, you can be on national forest trails. Absolutely lovely community.


 Real Estate in Coaldale CO


This image can be found at Cotopaxi, named after an Ecuadorian Volcano, grew from being a “whistle stop” for the Rio Grande railroad. Now it is known for world class white water rafting and fly fishing. Folks who live around here can commute for work to either Canon City, further east or back to is almost midway between the two. Cotopaxi is a great location for vacation/second home or your primary residence if you don’t mind the commute or can work from home.




Real Estate in Cotopaxi CO


This image can be found at  Nathrop, a quiet community north of Salida has always been known as the access point to Mount Princeton Hot Springs. To this day, folks come to soak in the restorative waters. It is my personal favorite in hot springs because the 104-degree water not only comes into the soaking and lap pools but comes out in Chalk Creek, running alongside the pools. I can spend all day there with a book, adjusting the rocks so that the water is neither hot nor cold. Lovely. Many folks choose to live in the area because of access to the hot springs and national forest.





Real Estate in Nathrop CO


This image can be found at Vista: Buena Vista was named after it’s stunning 360-degree views. Folks originally settled here because of the gold mining. Later, families began farming and ranching as they discovered the good soil in the area. The stagecoach and subsequent railroad brought more families to the area. With a population of about 2500 people, the town remains quiet and gracious. It is known as the best kept secret place to stay for folks skiing at the premier resorts near Denver and Aspen…because the town is so friendly and hotel rates are inexpensive. It is a few miles from Cottonwood Creek Hot Springs and Mt. Princeton.


Real Estate in Buena Vista Colorado


Crestone...beginning of the sunsetCrestone: Unique, magical and beautiful are words that tumble out of my mouth when I think of Crestone. The tiny town proper is 150 and the surrounding area is no more than 1500 when everyone is home. The magic of Crestone however, is its history. Early on, a rancher was instructed to bequeath parcels of his ranch to spiritual groups around the world which he did. It is now known for having the most diverse spiritual community in the world. Spiritual seekers in North America eventually hear about Crestone. And, it generally takes knowing a local or more than one visit for the fullness of the area to emerge…the 5 creeks heading up into the Sangre de Cristos, the temples hidden in the trees, the lovely residents and the “happening”. The local newspaper, the Crestone Eagle, has calendars of event for local happenings that rival a town 10 times its size. If you want a sanctuary, Crestone offers just that.


Real Estate around Crestone CO



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