Strawberry Park Hot Springs: ‘A perfect representation of what Colorado is about’

Strawberry Park might be the Centennial State’s most celebrated site of soaking. It’s "a perfect representation of what Colorado is and should be about," General Manager Joe Stepan says in a promotional video.

That doesn’t just refer to the serene scene of steaming waters tucked in the woods glittered by Steamboat Springs’ "champagne powder." Routt National Forest surrounds the park, a hiking and mountain biking playground. Of course, the Western Slope town is first and foremost famous for world-class skiing. But when the slopes clear, the hot springs still bustle.

The park is a combination of elegance and ruggedness. It’s reached on a dirt road that requires a four-wheel drive in winter. Catch a shuttle from town if you must, or take the scenic option by foot or bike.

The mineral-rich ponds are formed by stone masonry, and sandy paths among the trees lead to rustic accommodations: a train caboose, a large and small cabin, a covered wagon and tent sites. For any of them, you’ll want to reserve well in advance.

For ultimate rejuvenation, book a massage in a private hut or a water therapy session in a private pool.

Rules: Family-friendly during the day, clothes optional at night. Kids younger than 18 not allowed after dark. No dogs. No outside booze, and no smoking. No RVs or trailers.

The mineral-rich ponds are formed by stone masonry, and sandy paths among the trees lead to rustic accommodations: a train caboose, a large and small cabin, a covered wagon and tent sites. (Facebook, Strawberry Park Hot Springs)

Address: 44200 Routt County Road 36, Steamboat Springs, 80487

Hours: 10 am.-10:30 p.m. Sunday-Thursday (no entry after 9:30 p.m.), 10 a.m.-midnight Friday and Saturday (no entry after 10:30 p.m.)

Contact: 970-879-0342, info@strawberryhotsprings.com

Getting there: Off Interstate 70 heading west, exit for Colorado 9 north to Silverthorne. After 37 miles, turn west for U.S. 40 and follow to Steamboat. Go to strawberryparkhotsprings.com/ finding-us for detailed directions for driving and hiking to the park.

SETH BOSTER, THE GAZETTE

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