Cottonwood Hot Springs were used for centuries by the Ute Indians as a spiritual gathering area. Today, they are a fully-developed set of rustic hot springs and overnight accommodations just west of downtown Buena Vista.
The rustic resort is located just outside Buena Vista, on your to Cottonwood Pass, which takes you over to Almont and CB. From their base at the Continental Divide, Cottonwood is a relaxing oasis with a variety of soaking options. It’s a locals’ favorite, complete with overnight lodging and a laid back atmosphere.
These geothermal, hot mineral springs are entirely fed by gravity and known for their therapeutic and medicinal value. There are several pools of varying size and temperature. The hottest pool can reach up to 110° F, and the lowest around 94°.
Pool guests have access to a dry sauna as well. There are two private, creek side hot tubs available for hourly rent. These are closed in the winter. Nothing artificial is added to the natural hot springs. Alcohol, smoking, dogs and glass are not permitted in the pool areas.
Bathing suits are required at all times. Children 16 and under may not use the hot springs after the sun sets, as there is no lifeguard on duty.
For those wishing to extend their visit, lodging includes access to the springs on arrival and check out day, included in the charge. There are a few year round accommodations to choose from on-site. You can rent cabins of varying sizes, rent a bed in a coed dormitory or pay for a tent site. The dormitory consists of three double beds, three single beds, a full kitchen and a bathroom. Pets are only allowed in cabins for a fee.
A motel style lodge has two floors of either two doubles or single king bed rooms. To save money, a single or double bed can be rented in two hostel-style dormitories, one of which is female/family only. A warm weather option includes tent campsites, which run per person and provide access to the lodge for bathrooms.
There are four creekside cabins varying in size, from one room to three bedrooms. The best part is that they have their own personal hot spring pool. It’s not a tub filled with water either, but a rock lined pool dug out above Cottonwood Creek.
Located 1.5 miles from the resort, Terra Verde is the largest accommodation, a five bedroom house. Unfortunately, there is no private pool, but guests to get access to the public hot springs. Havens is a two bedroom cabin, situated just down the road. It also does not have a private pool.
Oddly, and by design, there are no TVs, WIFI, phones or air conditioning in any of the abodes. The lodge does provide a pay phone, TV-VCR/DVD, computer and library for guest use. No pets are allowed in any of the lodge rooms, but dogs are allowed in the cabins for a fee
Family friendly hot springs; Several stone soaking pools to choose from; Children must be with an adult and vacate the soaking pool area at 6pm.
Situated about twenty minutes south in Nathrop, Mt Princeton Hot Springs is another place to soak near town. You can soak creekside here or swim in their larger pools.
Address: 18999 County Rd 306, Buena Vista
Season: Year round
Hours: 8am – 10pm / 365 days
Temp: 94º to 110º F
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