Colorado

Sand Dunes Swimming Pool & RV Park - Hot Springs in Colorado

02/03/2021

It doesn't end with the traditional hot spring pools that are common in the countryside.

Think you've been tricked, and pay the extra fee to sneak into the vinyl house in the back.

Great Sand Dunes National Park

Newly established in 2004, the newest national park in the United States is the highest elevation sand dune in North America.

mt herard from dunefield

Photo by Christian Collins - mt herard from dunefield (2017) / CC BY-SA 2.0

The dunes formed in this region, which is not particularly arid, because the strong westerly winds coming over the Rocky Mountains carry sand that collides with another mountain range.

Great Sand Dunes

The area overlooking the dunes has an abundance of hot springs.

The Colorado Gators Reptile Park, a facility that uses the thermal water, is also located nearby.

Regular pool for kids

General Entrance 2

Sand Dunes Swimming Pool & RV Park is, as the name implies, an RV park/campground with hot springs.

Use of the pools for overnight guests is not free, but half the normal price.

General Entrance 1

Since it was a walk-in this time, I paid the $15.00 adult fee to enter.

There I found a somewhat nostalgic scene.

Swimming Pool 2

Facing the huge Main Pool was a covered area.

On the side of the main pool was the Baby Pool, and on the other side was the Therapy Pool.

Baby Pool

The water temp in the Main Pool was 100 degrees F and the therapy pool was 106 degrees F.

Water had been added and lost its hot spring-like qualities.

Swimming Pool 1

In addition, the water was disinfected with chlorine, which was disappointing.

There was a water slide, which kids may enjoy.

Water Slide

Greenhouse for adults

So far, this was a typical American hot spring pool, but here's where the fun begins.

Once I have completely exited, I went around to the back of the facility.

Greenhouse Outdoor 1

Capybara
This polytunnel is it!
Are you kidding?
Alpaca

A greenhouse that once grew vegetables served at the restaurant has been renovated and turned into an adults-only spa facility.

Greenhouse Entrance 2

There was an age limit of 21+ and a $5.00 surcharge.

Greenhouse Entrance 1

To the right, just inside the door, was a row of golf simulators.

Indoor Golf

Proceeding to the left, the interior of the plastic house was finally revealed.

The first thing that caught my eye was the "coffin" near the entrance.

Hotter Pool 2

The pool was shaped like a coffin, and 111 degrees F water was poured into it.

Suppressing my impatience, I first paid the fee.

Box Bar

This cool bar was the reception desk, which also serves alcoholic beverages and food.

Alcoholic beverages are limited to three drinks per person, as drinking and getting warm can make you dizzy.

Center Pool 2

The Zero Entry Pool bisects the vast interior.

Center Pool 1

It was long and narrow, gradually deepening as one went deeper.

An untouched area remained at the far end of the greenhouse, which was undergoing renovation.

Soaking

Walking along the boardwalk surrounded by tropical plants, I felt as if I were strolling through a botanical garden.

Botanical Garden

I found a sauna hidden in the bushes.

The interior was sized to accommodate about 10 people.

Sauna

Including the Coffin Tub mentioned earlier, there were a total of three small pools.

This Deep Thought Tub had a temperature of 108 degrees F.

Hottest Pool 1

It seemed that the natural thermal water was indeed being fed from the water outlets.

However, the smell of disinfection by chlorine chemicals could be felt in all the pools, to varying degrees.

Hottest Pool 2

While the originality of the space is highly commendable, the quality of the water was disappointing.

Water Discharge

Drainage was through a ditch that mimicked a natural stream.

When I walked out onto the terrace outside the room, I found a space that was nothing special.

Greenhouse Outdoor 2

There is still room for renovation, and if they could create private pools without chlorination, hot spring enthusiasts would be satisfied.

Summary

Sand Dunes Swimming Pool & RV Park, Hopper, Colorado, U.S.

Rating

  • Type
    Walk-in / Lodging (campground)
  • Rule
    Clothing required
  • Chlorination
    Detected
  • Water temp
    Up to 118 degrees F

Official website

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