Big Bend Hot Springs

From Mcloud we take the Highway 11 through the mountains to Big Bend. It’s only 20 miles or so but the rocky road is best done in first or second gear; steep inclines, clinging to the mountain wall, switchbacks and hairpins that lose any sense of direction gained by following the glittering blue reservoir a hundred feet below.

Towards evening we reach a junction to find a few parked cars and people milling around. This must be what we are looking for – no signs on the road to alert us to the jewel that lies a quarter mile off down a river. The springs are on private land and, while the owners are happy to let the public use them, they cannot be allowed to become too popular as then the authorities would step in asking for restrooms, fire extinguishers and other boring stuff.

There are half a dozen pools, the last constructed just a few months ago. This is an example of a good hot springs – with a fresh river flowing by its side and no one taking money at the gate…

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