Wild Horse Hot Springs - Hot Springs in Montana

As long as we have beautiful scenery and hot springs, we don't need walls or roofs.

It was a spa facility with such spirit.

Formerly a Polio Treatment Center

A 15 minute drive northeast from the spa town of Hot Springs, Montana.

I came to a meadow with literally nothing.

Road 01

Mother Dragon Geyser, the source of the Wild Horse Hot Springs, was discovered in 1913.

It is said that Molly Bartlett, daughter of Montana's third governor, discovered it while digging a well for daily use.

Cabins 01

Bartlett raised funds for the Montana Warm Water Project for Crippled Children to build a polio treatment center.

In the early 1980s, it became a public resort, and in the early 1990s it was sold to the private sector.

Tipi 01

Since that time, it has been named Wild Horse Hot Springs.

Currently, cabins, teepees, RV parks, and camp sites are available in addition to walk-in, but please contact the facility to see if overnight accommodations are available.

Entrance 01

Overcoming Tragedy

The spa area was basically outdoors.

Entrance 02

There was a roof only near the reception and changing rooms.

Incidentally, clothing is required during the daytime, and nudity is permitted after dark.

Outside 01

The six tubs were set on concrete paved ground and covered by gaping walls and a roof.

Rather, the walls and roof were as good as none.

Sauna 01

The exceptional structure is said to be the result of an intentional renovation after a rape and murder that occurred here in 2013.

Pools 03

After this tragedy, the hot springs were forced to close for nearly six years.

Soaking 01

The closed space that had shaken the community was transformed and made extremely open.

Pools 05

It has been transformed into a special place for soaking against a backdrop of rolling hills and vast meadows.

Pools 02

The wooden deck jutting out toward the pond made it completely outdoors.

Outdoor Tubs 03

Eight cattle troughs were lined up along the deck, filled with hot water.

With so many tubs, it was evident that the amount of water gushing out was quite large.

Outdoor Tubs 01

The water temp at the water outlet was 122 degrees F.

That's pretty hot.
You can adjust it with the valve.
Water Temp 01

The clear, colorless water was accompanied by a discreet sulfur smell.

Outdoor Tubs 02

The smell was clearly milder than the water inside the spa town.

Pond 01

There were smaller cattle troughs along the pond off the deck.

Outdoor Tubs 05

There was an air of wildness, like an undeveloped one.

Pond 03


Wild Horse Hot Springs, Hot Springs, Montana, U.S.

My rating

Type: Walk-in, Lodging

Rule: Clothing required, Clothing optional (after dark)

Chemical use: Not detected

Water temp: Up to 122 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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