Monday, June 20, 2016

Glenwood Hot Springs Pool and Lodge

Welcome to the heart of the Rockies! I always imagine being a pioneer and taking a wagon across this crazy terrain. I would of just settled in the plains. Actually, I would of settled in the exact town I live in now. They were very brave and a bit nuts. I am nervous just driving I-70 westbound, some parts are pretty tight and semi trucks are everywhere. I think a semi truck driver is brave as well. I would never take a semi or a wagon through the Rocky Mountains. No thank you.
I say this every time I cross the Colorado Rockies.

Isn't it just breathtaking? One reason I live here.

Our journey began at 4:30 am, due to a rock slide on I-70. They were down to two lanes, on one side, and closing Glenwood Canyon at 9 am. We needed to make it through before 9 am. It has been a good 8 years, since I have been so far west. It was lightly snowing through a few parts of I-70 but otherwise the weather was great for a road trip.

When I first met my husband in Germany, downtown Heidelberg, there is a tunnel. We had a little thing where we would hold our breaths the entire time we drove through for luck or to make a wish. So for every tunnel we talked about this memory and if we could hold our breaths. We laughed that the tunnels are so long we would pass out, there was one small tunnel we were able to hold our breaths through. It was a great start to our first date together. By first date, I mean our first night alone with out our daughter since she was born! She is almost 4.
I did good. I tried to focus on my husband and our time together.

Tunnels creep me out. They really do. I do not like the ones that go under water like on the east coast. I also do not like giant bridge like the one over the Mississippi River. I also do not like sitting on any bridge in town when stuck in traffic. Especial over a creek or the highway. I know I am weird.

We made it through Glenwood Canyon just in time. They were closing down both sides of the highway. The West bound lane of  I-70 was closed due to a massive rock slide. More like a boulder slide, why don't we just call it as it is? A semi truck was demolished from a picture I saw on line. Of course that had me a bit nervous. I will worry about anything and everything. 

As we drove I saw where the West bound lane had the guard rail missing. I assume that was the spot the slide happened. Even in my town we have rock slides. But never like this. Once we got through the pass and cell reception was back, I contacted our hotel to confirm we had made it through the pass. We made good timing with almost an hour to spare. 

Once we arrived in Glenwood Springs we decided to go eat breakfast and get some coffee. We decided we would go skiing and then check into the hotel. So we headed out to Sunlight Mountain Ski Resort. This would of been our first time skiing. Ever. We are mostly into summer activities. (Except my husband will fly-fish year round!) The weather was just so warm and beautiful, we checked it out, but decided to head to our hotel. It was going to be 58 degrees that day. Not the kind of weather for first time skiers. (I gifted the tickets to my cousin, who loves snowboarding) 

The Glenwood Springs Hot Springs Hotel will let you check in early, when available. We were really hoping to check in early & hit the hot springs pool. Jackpot, just around 11 am we checked in. Score! 

The rooms were small but perfect for a night or two. Four adults would be crowded but a family with 2 kids would fit great. They had a microwave, coffee maker, and mini fridge. We also had a small balcony, it was nice to sit outside and relax. We at the very end of the hallway and I would love the exact room again. I did not hear entry way doors slamming all night or morning. 

We mostly drove over to the pool, instead of walking. It was cold and we did not want to walk back wet.  To enter your have to walk all the way to the front and enter near the gift shop. This is on the far right side of the building. However, you can exit in the back off the pool and cross the street to the hotel. You have to check in through the front, give your room number, and you will receive towels. There are lockers if you need them as well.

To go into town you had to cross the Colorado River on a temporary bridge due to construction. It was pieced together and very creepy. I already mentioned my fear of bridges. I started to panic and told my husband I have to get off of here and left him behind as I did a power walk like a mad woman to get off ASAP! I thought maybe I should just cross the river to get back. That would be less scary in my mind.

The way the highway squeezes through this teeny town. Glenwood Springs just blows my mind how this town is squeezed in this little valley opening. Wyatt Earp lived and died here. There is a bar that marks the spot. It has a very little down town. 

 However if you head off to the west, there is a small polish place called Polanka Polish Restuarant. It was closed or we would of eaten there. They had a sign for home made Haluski. I am part Hungarian. I actually make this dish at home. Well, my husband does. Ha! We think we saw Polanka walking across the bridge. That gave us a lot of laughs. 

We walked around downtown and eventually found a great little steakhouse called Juicy Lucy's with a view of our hotel. It had Amazing service and an amazing lobster enchilada!Did I say Amazing service!!! I give our waiter 10 stars! He was what made the meal. However it was a bit pricey. When looking at this photo you would never know just to the left is a giant crane. or managed to shoot the photo and avoid getting the crane in the photo or the workers. 

Sitting at the table was this beautiful flower.

And this handsome man.

I'm a lucky, lucky lady!

Back to the hotel we go. We can't get back into the pool any faster! 

I imagine this is what Heaven is like. Heaven has to be filled with hot springs. It was 58 degrees the first day we swam in the pool. It was so nice and sunny. We both got sun burned a little on one side. So remember to wear sun screen. Cold out or not. If the suns out you will burn. High elevation sun is nothing to joke about. I am trying to avoid the sun at all costs. 

That night the temperature went down to 38 degrees. The steam that comes off the hit springs at night is like being in a sauna. Especially in the hot pool. 

This Hot Spring Pool is at an amazing 98.9 year round. It truly had healing properties. I had a swollen finger that I could not bend for a few days on and off. After a day in the pool my finger and joint were no longer swollen. 

There was a very hot pool at 104 degrees. It felt so good. However, you should not stay in for more than ten minutes. The amount of steam rising because of the cold temperature also made it almost sauna like. There were weird metal chairs in the hot pool, where you could pay with quarters to turn on bubbles. Every so often the maintenance guy would come by and turn every chair on. Its like being in a HOT hot tub. 

I never wanted to stay in a pool for so long, it was very hard to get out to go home. I wanted to stay another night, maybe even forever. My husband agreed with me. It felt amazing. It was amazing! 

Glenwood Hot Springs is the longest Hot Springs Pool in the world. It was like swimming a football field. It was majestic. There are lap lanes and even a diving board. 
The slides were not open, but I got an email today that they have opened for the 2016 season.

The following day was not as nice. The clouds had moved back in. This makes no difference at Glenwood Hot Springs. That morning while we swam, it snowed on us. Just flurry's. I felt as if I accomplished a bucket list item by swimming in snow.

This trip was amazing. Enjoying the Hot Springs was a perfect way to spend a date night with my husband. Did I mention it was our first night away from our daughter. We missed her like crazy but the time together was long overdue.

The source was fenced in but they had a small pool at the original temperature to keep the curious crazy ones out. This was were you would gag, as you walked by. If the win blew the steam at you, your stomach will turn. Sulfur is horrid like rotten eggs, for those who never smelled it.

My husband put his had it. It was filled with rocks and only meant to dip toes in to. I was okay with what I already smelled, so I stayed back and upwind. The source was 122° 

The main source is dangerous and completely closed off. They probably created the small tiny 122° pool so people would stay out of here. 

Check out time was noon. If you like you can spend that entire day at the pool, even after checkout. Sadly, We left the pool around 11:30 am to take quick showers and then check out. It was very hard to leave the hot springs pool. I did not want to get out. I was thinking of all kind of ways to stay another night. Knowing we never would.
We constantly talk about returning AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

 We had easy in-room check out and hurried out to hit the road. We had a long drive ahead. My husband napped while I drove since he got up early to fish the Frying Pan. I had to drive through tunnels. Eeek!
I was excited to see my daughter and 2 crazy dogs waiting for us at home.

I give the whole trip 5 stars!

I definitely will return. Glenwood Hot Springs Pool and Hotel tops my list of places in Colorado you must visit! 

A little piece of me never wanted to leave.

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