STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – Tucked away in the mountains just outside Steamboat Springs is a hot springs which has attracted the likes of Oprah and her crew.

Strawberry Park Hot Springs has offered a place to relax to the masses for the past 25 years.

“It’s just a beautiful setting. It’s seven miles from downtown Steamboat, so it’s easy to get to,” owner Don Johnson said.

Johnson first spied the hot springs when he cross-country skied in the area.

“On a year round basis, it’s constantly changing. You get the fall colors, the snow in the winter. It’s just a special spot,” Johnson said.

That was certainly Oprah’s assessment when she and best friend Gayle King sampled the springs during their cross-country trip several years ago.

And the springs attracts plenty of Colorado visitors who love getting away to Strawberry Park.

“For me, it’s the peacefulness, the calm and the serene and the quiet at night,” said visitor Corey Dorney. “Just to get away from the noise of the city, the craziness of the job and the employment an d the children and the dogs and the husbands. we can come out here and it’s just real calm and peaceful.”

Strawberry Park tries to remind the users of its past. A teepee is used for changing to remind visitors Native Americans used the springs long ago.

There have been improvements over the years. “The pools that we’ve built are actually down in the valley,” explained manager Joe Stephan, but there is still plenty of nature surrounding the springs.

“A lot of trees, a lot of wildlife … come down into this little enclosed valley,” Stephan said.

The manager and owner pride themselves on maintaining a natural fee from the surroundings of the mountains to the chemical-free water.

And they say the quiet solitude of the pools offers a taste of just how special hot springs across Colorado can be.


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