Washington State is famous for its scenic beauty, which includes the ocean, forests, mountains, and pristine lakes. One of the state’s best-kept secrets is that hidden among the picture-perfect landscapes are a collection of idyllic natural hot springs just waiting to be discovered.
Add something extra special to outdoor camping or hiking adventures in Washington by including a dip in a natural hot spring. Imagine being surrounded by frosty snow and icicles while lounging in a hot tub supplied by Mother Nature! Let’s take a whirlwind tour to learn more about twelve of Washington’s beautiful thermal springs.
12 Hot springs in Washington include:
- Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort
- Goldmyer Hot Springs
- Olympic Hot Springs
- Doe Bay Resort and Retreat
- Carson Hot Springs
- Ohanapecosh Hot Springs
- Scenic Hot Springs
- Baker Hot Springs
- Sulphur Creek Hot Springs
- Gamma Hot Springs
- And more…
Hot Springs In Washington
Hot springs have an almost magical appeal, but getting to them is not always straightforward. Washington State has eight hot springs that are open to the public and a few others that are more challenging to get to. Below are twelve of the Evergreen State’s thermal springs and all the information you need to explore these natural wonders.
1. Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort, Olympic National Park
Sol Duc Hot Springs Road
Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort in Olympic Park National Park is one of the state’s most popular thermal pool hotspots. Visitors can soak in one of three mineral-rich pools or swim in the adjacent freshwater pool.
Some of the features of Sol Duc Hot Springs include:
- It is easy to access.
- The pools have different temperatures, so finding one that feels comfortable to relax and unwind in is easy.
- It is less than three hours’ drive from Seattle.
- The resort is family-friendly.
- Overnight accommodation and campsites are available.
On the downside, the resort can become very crowded, especially over the weekends. A natural forest surrounds the thermal pools, but expect to share the experience with many other delighted visitors. There is also an entrance fee to gain access to the national park.
2. Goldmyer Hot Springs
Directions: Park at Dingford Creek Trailhead and hike at least 4.5 miles.
The secluded beauty of the Goldmyer Hot Springs makes it one of the idyllic thermal pools in the Evergreen state. Add to that the low sulfur content of the water, and you will understand why the attraction has had to limit the number of daily visitors.
Things to remember when visiting Goldmyer Hot Springs:
- Visitor numbers are strictly limited, so you need to apply for a spot well in advance. Check out the reservation instructions here.
- The springs are remote, with no cell service or internet connection.
- Bring your own water or a water filter.
- Whatever you bring in needs to be carried out.
The springs consist of 3 man-made rock pools where visitors can bask while taking in the pristine surroundings. Take note that spots need to be reserved in advance, and there is an admission fee.
3. Olympic Hot Springs, Olympic National Park
Expect a hike of at least 7.8 miles one way to reach the pools.
The Olympic Hot Springs are undeveloped natural thermal pools in a wilderness area. They are, therefore, the perfect destination for anyone who wants to experience natural hot springs in a truly unspoiled setting.
Accessing Olympic hot springs can be challenging as reaching the pools requires a mandatory hike of at least 7 miles one way. There are several thermal pools to dip in, and visitors are reminded of the following:
- The water in Olympic hot springs is not tested or treated, so it is better not to dunk your head.
- Check road conditions and trail conditions before you set out to visit Olympic Hot Springs.
- The thermal pools vary in temperature, with the warmest being 118F
- There is no accommodation available at the springs, but there are campsites that can be reserved nearby.
4. Doe Bay Resort And Retreat, Olga
107 Doe Bay Road
If you want to combine a luxurious soak in a natural hot spring with luxury, look no further than Doe Bay Resort and Retreat. The spa boasts three side-by-side tubs set atop a scenic waterfall.
Unfortunately, the thermal tubs at Doe Bay are only available for guests staying at the resort. Since it is part of the spa, they are only open during working hours.
In addition to the springs, there are many other activities for visitors to enjoy. After a relaxing soak, there will still be plenty of time to enjoy a massage, kayaking, or a hike in Moran State Park.
5. Carson Hot Springs Golf And Spa Resort, Carson
Hot Springs Avenue
Carson Hot Springs Spa offers visitors a trip back in time. The thermal springs are reminiscent of a 1930s bathhouse experience. Men’s and women’s communal pools are separate, and there are also multiple claw-foot iron bathtubs for guests who prefer privacy.
The resort is an excellent option for couples or anyone who needs time out in a quiet, luxurious setting. Things to note when visiting Carson Hot Springs:
- The bathhouse is for adults only.
- Bathing in the mineral-rich bathhouse pools is charged by the hour.
- The spa offers a variety of treatments, so a relaxing soak in the hot spring can be followed up with services such as a linen wrap and massage.
6. Ohanapecosh Hot Springs, Mt. Rainier Area
Mt. Rainier Area ˃SE – Cayuse Pass/ Stevens Canyon
Ohanapecosh Hot Springs is too small to soak your body, but it is a lovely place to dip your feet. The scenic surroundings and easy accessibility make it a great area to spend a day hiking. The small pools of warm water may feel more like a brook, but it is fascinating to explore and well worth a visit.
7. Scenic Hot Springs, Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest
Okanogan Wenatchee National Forest, WA
The hike to Scenic Hot Springs is about 2 miles each way, but the breathtaking destination makes it totally worthwhile. Three hot tubs are positioned overlooking a pristine pine forest. Each is a different temperature since they are varying distances away from the source.
Scenic Hot Springs is on private property. Reservations are therefore essential as the number of visitors is strictly limited. The fee to use the spring depends on whether you would like exclusive use of the facility or are happy to share it with other guests.
8. Baker Hot Springs, Mt Baker Snoqualmie National Forest
Mt Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest
No visit to the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest of Washington would be complete without a visit to Baker Hot Springs. If you time it just right and catch the pool in the right light, the water may appear a brilliant shade of turquoise.
Getting to the single thermal pool requires a somewhat bumpy ride along a forest road, followed by a 1.5-mile hike, but the attraction remains popular. You may even need to time your visit to avoid sharing with too many other people.
Baker Hot Spring is relatively basic, although it has been lined with stones and logs to make sitting more comfortable. The water temperature varies depending on how close to a source you are sitting, but the average is around 100F.
9. Sulphur Creek Hot Springs, Darrington
Sulphur Creek Hot Spring is known as a primitive pool since finding it is half the adventure. Since it doesn’t get many visitors, the trail may require a little bushwacking to reach the spring.
The spring itself is small but can comfortably accommodate two people. The water temperature is warm rather than hot, and it has a strong sulfur smell.
Don’t be disappointed if you arrive and find that the pool that should contain hot water is empty. The pipe that fills the pool sometimes gets clogged, but a quick brush with the broom alongside the pool will soon remedy the situation.
10. Gamma Hot Springs, Gamma Peak
In the valley below Gamma Peak: Coordinates: 48.15, -121.062
Gamma Hot Springs is an extremely remote thermal pool that few have visited. One of the reasons for the lack of traffic is that getting there requires several days of serious hiking. Finding the almost mythical hot springs may feel more like a quest than a recreational outing.
There is no doubt that the spot is picturesque. The water temperature in the spring is a superheated 140F! Fortunately, visitors can cool it down by letting in more water from the adjacent creek.
11. Wind River Hot Springs, Outside Carson
Outside the town of Carson, adjacent to the Wind River
Wind River Hot Springs is the primitive relation to the opulent thermal pools at Carson Hot Springs Golf & Spa. Accessing the remote pools requires visitors to cross the river, which can only be done during three months of the year when the water level is low.
The best months to visit Wind River Hot Springs are between July and mid-September, as the river will be low enough to get across. There are two hot pools with temperatures of 105F and 102F respectively.
Getting to Wind River Hot Springs can be challenging, and visitors must be careful to avoid parking or wandering onto private property during their visit. The pools are rarely used, so they are a great place to escape crowds.
12. Soap Lake Natural Spa and Resort, Soap Lake
236 Main Avenue East
Soap Lake is technically not a hot spring. However, the mineral-rich healing muddy water is often grouped with hot springs since it has many of the same properties.
Soap Lake contains 23 minerals, which are believed to be remedies for ailments like cirrhosis and arthritis. The thick, soapy water consistency is often compared to the Dead Sea.
The spa and resort make enjoying the unique lake experience easy. Accommodation options include guest rooms or cabins. An added attraction of the resort is that each guestroom has its own mineral tub, so the healing powers of the water can be enjoyed in privacy.
Washington has a rich offering of thermal springs. Some offer easy access and pure indulgence, while others are hidden deep in the pristine landscape. The natural wonders brimming with hot, mineral-rich water are delightful destinations for anyone wanting to reconnect with nature.
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