Something about hot water melts my stress away and puts my mind at ease. When I first found hot springs on a summer trip to Strawberry Park Hot Springs at about eight years old, I discovered my own personal heaven. Despite my love for natural hot springs, it took me nearly thirty years to visit the landmark Glenwood Hot Springs Pool. This wasn’t for a lack of interest. Every time I passed the famous pools on the interstate on the way to high school soccer matches, I admired all the people below rinsing themselves of tension, sore muscles, or even injury.
“Glenwood Hot Springs did not disappoint. My only disappointment was having not visited sooner!”
The cold air made me wary of wearing a bathing suit and nothing else. But once we got into the water and the snowflakes began falling from above – delicately landing on our eyelashes – I could not imagine a more perfect moment. Josh, ZB, and I were surrounded by natural warmth. All three of us were grinning. The scene was magical – as if from a storybook. And not just for us. Everyone we passed while exploring different areas within the pools at Glenwood Hot Springs couldn’t help but offer a smile when their eyes met another’s. A peaceful spell had been cast upon us all.
The Nomadic History of Glenwood Hot Springs
The Glenwood Hot Springs Pool was developed in 1888. The Yampah Spring, the source of the Glenwood Hot Springs’ mineral water, produces over 3 million gallons of water per day at a temperature of 122°F. It’s one of the hottest springs in the world. Before the water enters Glenwood Hot Springs’ two pools, it is cooled to 104°F for the resort’s hot tub-like Therapy Pool. It’s cooled down between 90° – 93°F for the gigantic main pool.
Soaking is a time-honored healing tradition. Members of the nomadic Ute tribe were the earliest known people to soak in the healing hot springs, which retains the original Ute language name “Yampah.” Yampah means “Big Medicine.” The springs offer 15 minerals.
Claim to Fame & When To Visit
Glenwood Hot Springs’ claim to fame is that it has the world’s largest hot springs pool. The pools are open year round. Memorial Day to Labor Day is the best time to bring kids – when the kiddy pool and waterslides are open.
But winter is perhaps the best time of year to visit any one of Colorado’s more than 30 natural hot springs. The crisp air helps to balance out the hot water. Don’t get me wrong – hot springs any time of year are amazing. But Colorado’s intense summer sun’s heat only allows short dips. Winter affords you an opportunity – if you’re lucky – to enjoy nature’s geothermal gift while meditating on snowflakes!
Glenwood Hot Springs | 401 North River Street, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601 | 970-945-6571