Umpqua Hot Springs – Everything You Need to Know

Umpqua Hot Springs isn’t like your typical day at the spa; it’s an experience that can only be found in Oregon, and not too many people know about it. From the hot springs to the hiking trails, you’ll have the time of your life here! Read on to learn everything you need to know about Umpqua Hot Springs and discover why it’s one of Oregon’s best-kept secrets.

Umpqua Hot Springs may look inviting, but before you take your first plunge, it’s important to know exactly what you’re getting into.

Umpqua Hot Springs
Umpqua Hot Springs

The springs are popular among locals who have been going there since they were kids, but many of the hot springs are closed now due to recent issues of overcrowding and safety concerns.

This Umpqua Hot Springs guide will help you figure out which hot springs are open and where to go for the best experience possible with these natural Oregon wonders.

What is Umpqua Hot Springs?

As one of three hot springs located in Oregon’s rural southern interior, it is notable for being one of a handful of year-round accessible hot springs. Like most natural hot springs in Oregon, and elsewhere in North America, Umpqua Hot Springs are not government-regulated or taxed; there are no admission fees or posted hours.

In fact, as with many other hot springs in Oregon, you can technically bathe naked if you so choose. The only official rule at Umpqua Hot Springs is that you must be over 18 years old (or accompanied by an adult) to enter the grounds.

Aside from that, anything goes! From clothing-optional bathers to folks who prefer bathing suits and bathrobes, like any other outdoor destination Umpqua Hot Springs has something for everyone.

And unlike many other popular destinations where crowds can sometimes make things unpleasant, due to its remote location Umpqua remains one of Oregon’s best kept secrets – meaning those who visit will likely have a more enjoyable experience than those who frequent popular hot spring destinations like Bend or Hood River.

Umpqua Hot Springs Directions

Umpqua Hot Springs is not a place that many people can find easily, as it is tucked away in some of Oregon’s most remote areas. It doesn’t appear on Google Maps, nor does it have any real signage when you get there (except for one sign that has been there since 1957), so if you don’t know what you are looking for, it’s unlikely that you will stumble upon it by accident.

But those who do know about it rave about its natural beauty and quiet seclusion—and with good reason. As a result, its popularity has grown considerably over recent years; in fact, reservations are now required during peak season!

This includes taking Oregon Routes 62 West, 230 North, and 138 West before turning on National Forest Route 34, Toketee-Rigdon Rd, for just over four miles before arriving at the hot springs trailhead. The last few miles are on a rough road, so a vehicle with high clearance is recommended.

For example, from Medford, Oregon, you would take Oregon Routes 62 East, 230 North, and 138 West. Thereafter, take National Forest Route 34, Toketee-Rigdon Rd for about four miles before arriving at the hot springs trailhead.

To reach the trailhead, start on U.S. Route 97 South and turn onto Oregon Route 138 West. Go approximately four miles, and you’ll find it on National Forest Route 34.

Umpqua Hot Springs Seasonal Access

Although you can visit year-round, it’s not possible to camp or swim during certain times of year. During these off-season months, only day use is permitted. From May 15 to October 15, swimming and camping are prohibited on site due to risk of spring runoff flooding. (Umpqua River).

Although you can visit year-round, it’s not possible to camp or swim during certain times of year. During these off-season months, only day use is permitted. From May 15 to October 15, swimming and camping are prohibited on site due to risk of spring runoff flooding. (Umpqua River).

The water temperature ranges from 60 to 75 degrees Farenheit depending on time of year. Swimming in the pools is refreshingly warm but still cool enough for a nice soak. If you go in summer, bring a towel and a change of clothes because it gets chilly at night!

The best time to go is mid-June through mid-September when temperatures are warmer and bugs aren’t as bad. If you go in winter, be prepared for cold weather—even snow! When I went in February, there was no one else there besides me.

It was so peaceful and beautiful with snowy mountains surrounding us. It was also very quiet without any other visitors around! I highly recommend going during winter if you want an intimate experience away from people.

Things to Do at Umpqua Hot Springs

Go to Umpqua Hot Springs. There are many different things you can do while you’re at the springs. One of these activities is soaking in one of their hot tubs, either inside or outside. Outside, they have two hot tubs called VIP and family tubs. They also have an indoor pool that you can soak in as well.

Another thing you can do while visiting Umpqua Hot Springs is hiking on one of their trails around or through the property. They offer free guided hikes every day so be sure to check them out! For those who like a little bit more adventure there is also rock climbing available for a small fee.

It’s not hard to find good food near Umpqua Hot Springs, but if you want something quick and easy there is a restaurant located within walking distance from all of their pools. The restaurant offers burgers, salads, sandwiches and much more.

The last activity I would recommend doing while visiting Umpqua Hot Springs is relaxing by their fire pits with friends or family members after enjoying all of your other activities. With everything that Umpqua Hot Springs has to offer it is no wonder why people visit year round.

Whether you are looking for a place to relax, enjoy nature or spend time with friends and family Umpqua Hot Springs has it all! Check out some of my favorite pictures below from my trip there earlier in January. Enjoy!

I visited Umpqua Hot Springs in Oregon earlier in January with my boyfriend and our dog Peanut. We stayed for three nights and we had such a great time exploring all of their properties! Before arriving we didn’t know what to expect, but now we are wishing we could go back again soon!

Parking at Umpqua Hot Springs

Free parking is available along both sides of Highway 138, just before you reach mile marker 10. There are signs posted directing visitors to park along both sides of road. There are no parking meters and no need for quarters or change.

Parking spots will fill up quickly during weekends and holidays so it’s best to arrive early in order to secure a spot. If all parking spaces are full, please park your vehicle safely off of Highway 138 on an adjacent side street (it is illegal to park on Highway 138).

Remember that there is limited cell phone service at Umpqua Hot Springs; use Waze if possible. The speed limit on Highway 138 is 45 mph. Please be aware of other drivers and their speeds as you drive down highway 138.

Places to Visit Near Umpqua Hot Springs

Bend, Oregon (40 min) – Bend is home to tons of outdoor fun and adventure. Get off on one of its various hiking trails or bike through town. They also have a great brewery scene that’s worth checking out! Portland, Oregon (2 hrs) – Portland has an amazing food scene and lots of culture.

It’s well known for being a foodie city so be sure to check out some restaurants while you’re there! San Francisco, California (5 hrs) – San Fran is one of my favorite cities in America because it has something for everyone. Whether you want to shop at Union Square or explore Alcatraz Island by boat, you’ll never run out of things to do here!

Also check out the followings if you like

1. Umpqua Lighthouse

2. Cape Perpetua Viewpoint

3. Nye Beach

4. Devils Churn

5. Sea Lion Caves

6. Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge

7. Face Rock Creamery, Pacific City, OR 97110 (Gelato)

8. Coquille River Lighthouse

9. Joseph H. Stewart State Park

10. Port Orford Heads State Park

11. McVay Rock

12. Boiler Bay

13. Haystack Rock

14. Heceta Head

15. Arch Cape

16. Cascade Head

17. Three Capes Scenic Route

Places to Stay at Umpqua Hot Springs

Before visiting Umpqua, it’s important to decide where you’re going to be staying. There are many hotels and campgrounds in and around town. Most can be booked online or through a phone call.

The most popular hotel is The Redwood Lodge, which is located right next to some of the best hot springs. The lodge offers stunning views of Mt. Thielsen from every room and has an outdoor pool for those who prefer swimming in warm water rather than hot springs.

Another great option is Buckhorn Campground, which has sites available on both sides of river. It’s also just a short walk away from some of Umpqua’s best hot springs.

Other options include River Bend Inn, Hi-Cone Motel, and Thrifty Cabins. These three places are slightly more expensive but have more amenities like pools and jacuzzis.

Finally, there are plenty of camping options if you want to rough it out in nature (and save some money).

Umpqua Hot Springs Fees

The entrance fee is $30, and it’s good for a single day. However, you can upgrade to an annual pass for $80. You’ll also have to pay $5 per car if you drive (buses are free).

They accept cash only. As of July 2017, they were not accepting credit cards at all. To be on the safe side, I recommend bringing exact change in cash or traveler’s checks when visiting. It might be possible to use a credit card with them in 2018, but I’m not sure about that yet.

What Time Should I Visit The Springs?

For best results, I recommend visiting The Springs in late September through early October and March through mid-April. These times of year will give you a chance to bask in nature while also getting an opportunity to see some of Oregon’s stunning natural foliage, depending on what trees grow near by.

Both seasons are very beautiful, even though one is very hot and humid and one is cold and snowy. During these months, there is less people around which makes for a more peaceful experience as well.

My favorite time to visit was in November when it was still warm enough to go without my jacket but cool enough that I didn’t have to worry about being too cold. However, if you really want to beat out all of your friends who live nearby and get there first thing in May or June, then go for it!

Final Words on Umpqua Hot Springs

With four unique pools of varying temperatures, and a wonderful campground with clean facilities and loads of activities, you’ll feel like you’ve escaped to your own little paradise when visiting Umpqua Hot Springs. For something so close to Portland it feels miles away from everything. Soak in a warm pool, then dive into an ice cold pool in just a few steps.

All of which is only about 20 minutes from Highway 101 if you time it right. Stop by next time you’re up north! And don’t forget to bring extra cash for food and parking as they don’t take cards at either location. I recommend bringing some food along as well as there isn’t much around other than trees. They do have snacks for sale though! Have fun and be safe out there!

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