Ouray is blessed with an astonishing abundance of natural beauty. Mountains covered in trees, trails for walking and biking and snow peaks and ice for climbing, all make for bountiful adventures and activities in the outdoors.
But Ouray is also renowned for its hot springs, making it an amazing destination for very enjoyable and diverse experiences. Ouray’s hot springs are perfect for relaxing at the end of an active and lively day. The sheer experience of soaking in hot springs while enjoying the snow-capped mountains surrounding the area is unforgettable.
Health Benefits of Hot Springs
Hot springs have been known for centuries for being beneficial to blood circulation and stress reduction.
Hot springs are full of useful minerals that are absorbed by our bodies to help with oxygen flow. They are also valuable for relieving muscle pains because hot water calms tense muscles. Similarly, floating in water helps with aching joints.
And don’t forget skin problems: due to their mineral content, hot springs can help with dry and rough skin.
However, pregnant and nursing women and people with heart problems should consult with their doctor before going to a hot spring.
Ouray’s Hot Springs
Ouray boasts a number of hot springs with excellent facilities. Importantly, Ouray County’s hot springs are free of the strong sulfur (“rotten egg”) smell that you encounter at many other hot springs. This has to do with the water’s mineral content and Ouray’s local geology.
Ouray Hot Springs Pool
Ouray Hot Springs Pool is gently nestled in a tight valley of the Rocky Mountains, surrounded by tall peaks which in winter are covered in snow. The lush forests around the area rightly give Ouray its nickname of “Switzerland of America.”
The hot springs are sulfur-free and water temperatures range from 96 to 106 degrees.
There are five separate pools with different activities offered in each one to suit all guests’ preferences. One pool is dedicated to relaxing and soaking while another one is dedicated to swimmers.
Come summer, children have their own pool for playing and a water slide is installed for even more fun games.
Ouray’s hot springs also offer massages for those of us craving the ultimate relaxation.
There are railings and steps around to make it easy and safe for guests to go in and out. People with movement problems or painful joints will definitely appreciate the fences and rails helping them in and out of the pools.
Similarly, the water temperature is checked closely. There is also personnel making sure guests are tended to. Finally, there are appropriate amenities for changing, such as changing rooms, showers, and lockers. Clothing is compulsory.
The Historic Wiesbaden Hot Springs Spa
Located in the stunning San Juan Mountains of Western Colorado, the Historic Wiesbaden Hot Springs Spa is a place of peace and reflection. It offers world-class rejuvenation and alpine elegance, offering an experience that’s both uplifting and therapeutic.
Its Vapor Cave features a 108-degree soaking pool, while its outdoor swimming pool is at a pleasant 102-104 degrees. Lorelei is a secluded, private outdoor soaking pool and waterfall. All the springs of the Wiesbaden flow pure, straight from the source and contain beneficial minerals without any added chemicals.
Wiesbaden also offers a full range of Spa Treatments for individuals or couples.
Orvis Hot Springs
Orvis Hot Springs is a clothing-optional, natural hot springs resort at the base of the San Juan Mountains, just down the road from Ouray. Here, you will enjoy the fresh mountain air and spectacular scenery while soaking in ten unique pools and ponds.
Orvis Hot Springs have natural lithium water, never heated nor treated in any way. Lithium water enhances rest, relaxation, and rejuvenation. Indoor and outdoor soaking areas feature water temperatures ranging from 65 to 112 degrees to soothe your body and bring tranquility to your mind. A talented team of massage therapists will help you release tension and accelerate healing.
Colorado Historic Hot Springs Loop
If you want to revel in the indulgence of hot springs, then you might be interested in the Colorado Historic Hot Springs Loop. This Hot Spring Loop consists of five Western Colorado hot springs, including Ouray’s. You can start off at Ouray and then enjoy four different experiences of hot springs, including underground steam baths.
Organized hot springs are monitored for their cleanliness and safety. There are no dangerous animals such as snakes lurking around nor any dangerous parasites in the water. No animals can enter them, making them clean. All this makes organized, commercial hot springs safer than natural wild ones.
Things to Watch Out For
Hot springs are an enjoyable and healthy way of relaxing. However, guests should always remember that hot springs tend to dehydrate the body, due to their high temperatures. They should drink plenty of water and avoid alcoholic beverages.
People soaking in hot springs in summer are likely to forget how hot the sun can get. Sun protection is essential.
Short of these sensible recommendations, hot springs are a delightful and healthy activity, particularly in they are located in such stunning scenery.