Stagecoach Hot Springs: Clothing-optional soaking on the Rio Grande

Taos_2The sun is setting, and the sky is pink above the rim of the canyon. The soothing sound of moving water is nearly loud enough to overpower the conversations of the soakers at the Stagecoach Hot Springs. A family of mountain goats grazes on the other side of the river, trampling around the steep terrain. As the light fades, I close my eyes and enjoy the cleansing element of soaking in natural hot springs.

Stagecoach Hot Springs is located right on the Rio Grande River near the Royal Gorge Bridge. If you are driving from Taos to the bridge, then you will make a right onto Tune Road (it will be a left if you are travelling in the opposite direction). At the end of Tune Road, there will be a parking lot and trail. It is about a half mile walk down the canyon to the hot springs, which are located right on the river.Taos_1

The hot springs have somewhat of a historical significance to the New Mexico area as well. There are Pueblo petroglyphs near the hot springs that say “water of long life.” This signifies centuries of hot spring visitors. The springs were one of Taos’s first tourist attractions, and the trail that leads down to the springs is actually an old stagecoach road, hence the name Stagecoach Hot Springs.

There are two clothing-optional pools at these free hot springs. The pool down stream is significantly colder than the pool upstream, however it is less murky. The springs are also not too fragrant, which is nice. For anyone who enjoys a good soak and is passing through Taos, these are a must-do.

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