Suppose it’s a foggy day of freezing winter and you have to go outside. Ah! Hurts right? But you go, walk with your hands in the pockets of your multiple layered warm clothes, and voila! You discover not one, not two, but three hidden gems!! Hehe, leave this fiction aside, but we will talk about three hot water springs in Nakusp, British Columbia, in this article.
These three Nakusp hot springs in British Columbia can be visited throughout the day (because come on! Water is always beautiful). You won’t be able to resist the temptation to get into those soothing waters laden with minerals.
Two of them (Halcyon and Nakusp hot springs) give you lodging or accommodation facility on the spot, and one of them gives you some adventure experience as you can camp and pitch a tent for yourself there.
All three Nakusp hot springs are entirely different from one another, and hence you won’t feel like, “oh, hot springs are hot springs; I saw one. Do I even need to visit the other three?” Visit the other three as they will be worth it.
If you have been to trails or treks in some jungle or hilly area, you must have observed that putting your feet in the running water or whatever waterbody you found, it could be a canal, a small pond or a river, even a sea; you feel all your tiredness flying away within a blink of an eye, the temperature of the water doesn’t matter of course, but if it’s a freezing winter and you find a hot spring? Is that anything else that could make one happier at that moment?
1.Nakusp Hot Springs
Nakusp Hot Springs is located inside the Kuskanax Valley, closest to Nakusp in the foothills of Selkirk Mountains.
Why it is on top of our list is because these Nakusp springs have been best known as ‘British Columbia’s one of the best-preserved secrets!’
The Nakusp hot springs belong to the village where there are two pools in the forest, filled with mineral springs.
One of these pools is hot, and another one is warm. In the times of summer, the hot pool is 103° F or 39.5° Celsius, and the warm pool is 97° F or 36° Celsius.
Whereas in winter, the hot pool produces steaming hot water which has a temperature of 107° F or 41.5° Celsius, and the warm water pool gets warmer as well, increasing the temperature to 100° F or 39.5° Celsius.
i)Trails & Hikes
Okay! I get your concern if you are a hygiene freak, who might think “Oh! it’s a forest, would it be clean?” Don’t you worry! The pools (despite being public) are crystal clear, but the changing rooms are pretty hygienic.
Remember I told you could camp and pitch your tent near one of the hot springs? Nakusp is the one. There are an RV site, Cedar Chalets and a campground as well. You can visit their website if you have more queries or doubts.
Okay, we understand there are hot springs, but what more?
Of course, taking a long, relaxing bath in hot springs is really very good but how long? 20 minutes? An hour? Or more? What about the rest of the day? Will we stay in our tents only?
No. There are a lot of activities to do in the Kuskanax Valley. There is a 15 kilometres long hike on the trail which is just near the Hot Springs Road. This trail (Kuskanax Summit trail) facilitates you with the magnificent views while the other trail, the Kimbol Lake Trail makes its way through a mountain lake with access to the parking lot of Nakusp hot springs near the pool. So you can stay for two-day camping for two hikes!
One of the most famous rides, the Kuskanax Creek or Hot Springs Trail spreads up from the Cedar forests to Hemlock for around 8.5 kilometres.
This road emerges out at the Kuskanax Creek bridge which is so near the Hot Springs. There are several other teams as well; many of them fall under the category of gnarly.
iii)Skiing And Snowmobile
If it’s winter, that’s even better. You can do cross-country skiing or snowshoe on the local trails.
The best thing about this place is, no matter what time of year you come, you’ll feel at home and at peace, because it’s mama earth after all!
2. Halfway Hot Springs, Nakusp
Here in the Nakusp hot springs area near Halfway hot springs, you can find several different pools varying in temperature.
If you want to spend your time near nature and a comparatively less crowded place with a much-grounded atmosphere, you might like to visit Halfway hot springs.
Halfway hot spring situated in the midway between the Halcyon and Nakusp hot springs.
This is not a much-developed place; you’ll find several outhouses and changing rooms with some trails around pools and signboards of “Beware from poison ivy”.
A slightly cooler spring is thereby a river. Although it’s underdeveloped now, the Halfway hot springs were famous as a party spot. But in 2016, British Columbia parks took the initiative in cleaning and maintaining the place.
The hot spring pools vary in temperature a lot, from cold to steamy hot by the river. One of the pools is so hot you could boil potatoes in it. Check out all the pools to know which pool is most comfortable for you.
In case you’re thinking of camping, it would be better to ramble around the hot springs after your dinner so that you can get fresh and don’t sleep with tired feet. But be cautious as there are some precipitous steps while both, ascending and descending.
Camping Near Halfway Hot Springs
i) Camping At Campground
You can either camp on the campground where you’ll get special greetings from the residential caretaker, Bob Moody with information about camping and reaching the hot springs. However, you’ll have to pick all the garbage yourself.
There are many ways to do camping near Halfway hot springs; both are pretty affordable, around $15-$20.
Car-camping is one of the most popular things to do, but there are only twelve accessible places packed as early as 4 PM on bright sunny days.
While your camp stays at campgrounds, you can expect car noises because the vehicle approach is near the campsite. You can also hear noises from some fellow campers in your neighbourhood.
iii) Camping in Sleeping Bags or on Tent Pads:
Just imagine you’re camping in the foothills of some steep hill… It sounds and feels amazing, no? Although you’ll have to carry your stuff all the time.
You won’t really have many places to visit while camping here but there’s the Halfway River. You have a raised wooden platform for your tents, your own picnic table, and a huge log to lay and relax, all with a bonus with privacy.
I think for introverts like me, who REALLY want to stay close to just nature and detox from the everyday hustle, this is the best option. The outhouse is also a few minutes away from here.
Although make sure you have enough water to drink, fill them with all your bottles.
Albeit the hot springs are usually available to the public in winter, you might have to snowshoe, snowmobile, or ski the way up. But on some good days, they’d be amazing.
3. Halcyon Hot Springs
What makes the Halcyon hot springs different from the other three is that it’s the most progressed among the 3 Nakusp hot springs.
It’s not less than a lavish resort with accommodation facilities on-site and a restaurant ready to serve you entirely and an organiser that will introduce different lake activities.
The location is too good with an upper arrow lake and the Monashees working as the backdrop.
There are some warm and hot water pools on the upper side if you get too cold with cold baths. However, some people can prefer cold pools over the hot, so it’s all up to you.
If you want to swim, there’s a big swimming pool on the lower side.
When you’re done enjoying your baths or soaking your feet in the hot-warm or cold springs, get down towards the lake. You can have rent for a day or half of the paddle boats, kayaks or canoes. Just don’t miss out on Fosthall Falls as it’s one of the most noteworthy spots.
i)Where To Eat
Don’t worry if your crows in your stomach start growling; you can have a tasty meal with a great view at the Kingfisher Restaurant.
They serve their customers the local food, made with locally bought ingredients. Most of the ingredients are brought within a hundred miles from the resort. The best thing is, the menus change according to the season, giving you fresh food all the time. They also have special menus for kids.
ii)The Nakusp Village
Nakusp is not a huge village; it just has some more than 1500 people abiding here. Nakusp Village is situated just near Arrow Lake in the Kootenay region.
The place is certainly not easy to reach, but this journey is what makes it worth it. Nakusp is around a hundred kilometres south of Revelstoke through Highway 23 and an unimpeded, totally free ferry on Arrow Lake. It’s a 250-kilometre drive in the North on Highway 6 from Nelson.
Before starting your journey to any of the Nakusp hot springs, make sure to get last-minute stuff in the Nakusp Village, especially if you’re planning to have a camp stay at the Halfway hot springs, get the supplies. Don’t just leave the town, enjoy a good walk on the lakeside waterfront walkway. You can have magnificent views of Arrow Lake and the mountains. The village gardeners will also show you their beautiful flowers with love and pride.
Sometimes, journeys are better than the destinations; the term correctly fits with Nakusp hot springs.
Wishing you a happy journey!