Visit This Hot Spring In The Mountain West For Year-Round Swimming Adventures

Hot springs form due to geothermal heat deep beneath the Earth's surface. Some are located near volcanic activity, so those in places like Yellowstone National Park are too hot for most living things to enter. But hot springs at less-than-boiling temperatures can make for year-round swimming in beautiful surroundings. When thinking of thermal swimming pools in the United States, places like Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas and multiple places in Colorado likely come to mind. However, there are natural springs all over the country. Among these other notable locales is Homestead Crater.

Located in Midway, Utah, Homestead Crater is far from the hustle and bustle of Salt Lake City and the tourist crowds of Park City. Despite this, getting there is still relatively simple, as Midway is located just minutes from U.S. Route 189. This makes Homestead Crater a convenient day trip from both of the cities mentioned above.

Try paddleboard yoga at the Homestead Crater

Homestead Crater formed over the span of around 10,000 years as the Earth's interior heated the melted snow from the Wasatch Mountains. Limestone particles converged to create a dome almost completely covering the crater, save for a lid-like hole at the top. At a depth of 65 feet and just under 100 degrees Fahrenheit year-round, Homestead Crater is the only warm water location for scuba diving in the contiguous United States. However, this does not mean that all visitors to the Homestead Crater must be scuba diving certified. Visitors can scuba at the crater with the help of onsite staff or enjoy the water by snorkeling or swimming.

For a one-of-a-kind yoga experience, try yoga on a paddleboard (also known as stand-up paddling, or SUP) right on the water of the Homestead Crater. Park City Yoga Adventures offers paddleboard yoga in the crater, but it also offers a guided hike through the crater's surrounding forest with paddleboard yoga coming after. In winter, hikers may want to bring snow boots or snowshoes. Visitors wishing to enjoy either class can make a booking on the company's website.

Reservations are required to visit Homestead Crater

Visitors can get inside the Homestead Crater while staying dry as well. There is a tunnel through the limestone walls that gets you right to the water's level, where you can enjoy the beauty and warmth of the water on artificial decks. There are self-guided tours with views of the crater from the hole in the limestone dome and down to the water level while explaining the history and science behind this unique geological formation. Regardless of how you choose to experience the Homestead Crater, reservations are required through the crater's website.

The Homestead Resort is a lodging option closest to the Homestead Crater. Aside from quick access to the crater, the Homestead Resort has vacation packages that bundle a stay at the resort with entry to the Homestead Crater. Next to the Homestead Resort is the Homestead Golf Club, complete with a practice facility and equipment for adults and children. While the Homestead Crater is open year-round, the golf club is only open from May through October. As good as the golf is, the Homestead Crater is the main event, with its year-round swimming, subterranean mystique, and natural beauty.