Orient Land Trust (OLT) and Valley View Hot Springs are sure to deliver relaxation. This escape lies in the San Juan Valley of Colorado, southwest of Salida.
It’s nestled in the Sangre de Cristo mountains overlooking the valley.
OLT is “off the beaten path,” not because it isn’t well known, but because of their dedication to preserving the natural and biological resources they sit on.
They are operated “off the grid” and there are no lights at night. This allows for the most amazing sky you’ll find in Colorado with shooting stars competing against one another.
There are 6 natural pools and ponds to enjoy, scattered about the side of the mountain. All are easily accessible by trail.
For the most organic feeling pools, hike up the short, but steep, trail to the top ponds. There are two small, shallow pools bubbling with warm water from the the spring running down the mountain. They are not the hottest, but they offer the best views of the valley; a sunset up here will take your breath away.
The hottest, and most popular pool, is a short walk from the parking lot. It’s a great place to end your evening and gaze up at the sky.
Valley View is a clothing optional hot spring, but there are enough pools to have privacy in for those a little bit more shy.
A day pass here costs just $12 in the winter months, and $15 during the summer. If one day of soaking isn’t enough, you can stay overnight in a tent site, a hotel style room, or a shared bunk room.
Visit their website for more information.
Image Source: Orient Land Trust