Colorado has no shortage of mineral hot springs. Heated by the Earth’s core, Mother Nature’s hot tubs bubble throughout the state with a few dozen resorts connected by a Hot Springs Loop.
But one of the state’s most unique hot spring destinations is in Glenwood Springs, which is about an hour northwest of Aspen and is home to Iron Mountain Hot Springs. The hot springs are adding an 21+ section this summer, with special pools that mimic the world’s famous soaking waters.
Currently, Iron Mountain, which looms over the Colorado River, has a large family pool, as well as 17 smaller pools connected by heated walkways and which vary in size and temperatures ranging between 98 and 108 degrees Fahrenheit.
But one pool has emerged as a guest favorite since it was added last year: the “Experience Pool,” which has smooth rocks in the bottom that add foot reflexology to the experience, plus a blend of minerals that changes to replicate other hot springs. around the world. . One month, the cosmopolitan pool can take inspiration from the milky blue, silica-rich waters of Iceland’s Blue Lagoon; in another, guests can soak in waters reminiscent of Kinosaki, Japan, which contain calcium, bicarbonate and sodium.
Since 2022, the Iron Mountain team has crafted multiple mineral recipes for their unique Experience Pool and now plans to include some of them in the mix of new pools coming to the 21-year-old “Up River” section this summer. Contenders include carbonic salts from Vichy, France, relaxing magnesium waters like those from Bath, England, potassium-rich waters like you’d soak in Calistoga Hot Springs, California, and bicarbonate like that found in hot springs. from Kırşehir, Peru. The team also experimented with a salt-rich pool with the Dead Sea as the muse, but it was too tough for the pumps.
The springs that supply Iron Mountain are also unique. Approximately 14 minerals are found in water, with iron, sulfate, chloride, sodium and calcium being the most abundant.
The new section will include eight new riverside pools, a cold dip and a larger experience pool. In addition, there will be a cafe serving sushi and poke bowls, and delivering alcoholic beverages to those who don’t want to leave the water.
The existing section of Iron Mountain has an on-site Sopris Cafe serving crispy pizzas, charcuterie, spirits and more.
Where to stay:
Sleep at the Hotel Colorado, a historic hotel located just a short drive from downtown Glenwood and also adjacent to the town’s other hot spring, the Glenwood Hot Springs Resort Pool, which bills itself as the largest hot spring pool in the world.
Notable hotel guests included Teddy Roosevelt, William Taft and the “Unsinkable” Molly Brown. The lobby has crackling fireplaces, and the hotel has an on-site cafe and restaurant and bar. Recently renovated, guestrooms feature colorfully patterned headboards juxtaposed with brick walls. In the summer months, the hotel’s courtyard is filled with flowers and is a popular spot for enjoying spritzes.
Tips for visiting Iron Mountain hot springs:
- Reservations are required, and Iron Mountain Hot Springs offers three hours of immersion with a limited number of all-day passes. The hot springs are open from 9 am to 10 pm daily.
- Guests who take three-hour showers receive a free towel. The second towel can be rented for $2.50 each, but you are also welcome to bring your own towels and robes.
- Visiting in winter? In addition to bringing a bathrobe, pack some sandals that you can wear when jumping between pools and a winter hat.