Elkhorn Hot Springs Resort - Hot Springs in Montana

A hot-spring resort with a primitive and wild atmosphere.

The "wet sauna" was great for me.

Montana in the early 1900s

It is a little over a three-hour drive northwest of West Yellowstone.

Entrance 01

Elkhorn Hot Springs is located near the Idaho border in Montana.

Up a dirt road in the Grasshopper Valley, there was a wooden lodge.

Restaurant 01

The lodge, which remains from its early days in 1921, had a restaurant on the first floor and dormitory-style accommodations on the second floor.

Dormitory rates are as low as $50.00 per night at the time of writing.

Restaurant 02

A U-shaped path was built on the large property, with the path on the left leading to the lodge and pool.

On the right was the road to the cabins.

Map 01

Most of the cabins were built before the 1930s, and all are equipped with refrigerators and wood stoves.

Firewood 01

Firewood can be purchased for an additional fee.


A view of "The Badger," the one I reserved.

The only restroom was a vault toilet located a short distance away.


This is the place to enjoy the rustic, rather wild, early 1900s Montana atmosphere.

Outdoor pool since its establishment

Pool House 01

The pool house was located at the far end.

Pool House 02

There were outdoor pools next to the red building, and the steam from the thermal water was rising.

Pool House 03

Walk-in is also available.

At the time of writing, $10.00 for adults.

Pool House 04

Change into swimsuits in separate men's and women's changing rooms.

Changing Room 01

The outdoor pools have been in existence since 1918.

They were divided into two pools, one large and one small, with the smaller pool on a lower level.

Pools 04

The large one was deep and for swimming.

Pool noodles were scattered around.

Pools 02

Natural hot spring water was stored and it was lukewarm at 91 degrees F.

Pools 05

The small pool was shallow and the water temp was 97 degrees F.

There were water outlets at the part dividing the two pools, and the hot water was put in two separate ways.

Pools 03

The poolside was a wooden deck.

Stream 01

It faced a creek.

Oh, something is leaking from the pool house.
What is there?
Stream 02

Excellent wet sauna

I had heard that there was a sauna in the pool house, but this was an unexpected one for me.

Sauna 01

The wet sauna, which was shared by both men and women, was full to capacity with four to five people in it.

Sauna 03

The room, filled with a good smell of wood, was kept hot and humid, as it should be.

However, the floor was not the shape of the sauna I knew, with a pool divided into three sections.

Sauna 02

The correct use would be to sit on the dividing surface, but it does not matter.

The pool was deep enough to bring the surface of the water up to the chest when sitting down and can be enjoyed as a soaking pool.

Sauna 04

When I soaked up to my shoulders, I felt a lot of heat.

The 113 degrees F water was pouring out.

Water Temp 01

The water was alkaline, with a pronounced smooth sensation.

I spent most of my stay in this space.


Elkhorn Hotsprings Resort, Polaris, Montana, U.S.

My rating

Type: Lodging, Walk-in

Rule: Clothing required

Chemical use: Not detected

Water temp: Up to 113 degrees F

Official website

  • Writer

Hot Springer Ken

A hot spring enthusiast based in Japan. Toured over 300 North American hot springs while working in Texas from 2016 to 2022. For updates, visit X or Instagram!

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