Goldmyer Hot Springs, WA
A year ago, I'm not sure I would have so willingly approved of venturing on a winter hike. Even if the end result was to steaming hot springs that promised to dethaw my body within seconds. I may have acclimated to the chill of the Northwest, but I'm not sure I will ever fully embrace it. My fingers turn white and I can't feel them within 20 minutes of hitting the cold. I haven't found anything besides stuffing my hands in my armpits that keep them warm, which doesn't work well when you are hiking and want your arms for balance.
Needless to say, winter hiking and I weren't made for each other, but on the first day of the New Year, a group of us braved the freezing temperatures and set out to hike to Goldmyer Hot Springs.
The drive alone took about the same time as the hike itself, but it was worth it when we were the first to arrive and got to soak all by ourselves. The drive to the foothills of the Cascades takes about 45 minutes from Seattle and then you're looking at another hour and 30 minutes on unmaintained, pot hole suffused roads before you park. THEN you hike 4.5 miles to get to your final destination.
Sure it's a little bit of a trek, but the destination wouldn't be as special if it were easily accessible.
Hope you all rang in the New Year with special company and renewed invigorated spirits! Happy 2015!
Goldmyer Hot Springs Helpful Hints
- Goldmyer is owned and managed by the Northwest Wilderness Programs, a non profit organization established in 1976 to protect the Washington wilderness.
- The springs limit the number of visitors to 20 people per day to help preserve the environment therefore....
- The only way to guarantee access to the hot springs is to make a reservation!
- There is no water source, trash service or cell phone service. What you pack in, you pack out, and you can leave your phone in the car. (Unless you're like me and have to use it for the camera.)
- Travel time depends on the road conditions and weather. Always check their "access report" and "road closures" on their website before starting the journey.