Without a doubt, probably the coolest thing I’ve ever discovered driving around the desert is this abandoned hot springs resort out in the middle of N O W H E R E between Tonopah and Rachel (a/k/a home of Area 51). It sits right off the highway at the intersection of U.S. 6 and NV 375, baking quietly in the desert sun.
The place is fenced off and says “KEEP OUT,” but some thoughtful locals cut a hole in the fence for easy access, and I was tipped off by a friend that you can still soak here, if you’re respectful and don’t leave a mess.
This is a fully developed swimming pool, lined in concrete, although the elements are taking back over and slowly eating away at the edges. The hot water comes in from a little hot creek running down the mountain, and the pool empties out at the
other end back into the creek, which flows on down past the highway. Because it’s constantly being flushed, the pool feels very clean and the water is this amazing turquoise blue color, with a very fine white silt coating the bottom of the pool that is almost like clay.
I don’t know when this place ever saw enough traffic to sustain a business,
because I’m here to tell you this location is REMOTE — over 3 hours from Vegas! But apparently, there used to be a bar and grill and everything — the abandoned buildings still stand nearby, and are still full of rusted old restaurant equipment and whatnot.
As a bonus, there’s also a very quaint abandoned house directly across the
highway, and several super-rustic, busted-up old mining cabins up the hill behind the pool. You could easily spend a half day hanging out, exploring or shooting. Because it’s so remote, it’s unlikely you’d be bothered.
Wonderhussy rating: 10/10
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