Goldbug Hot Springs

I want to start this post off with a small warning, some of the images show a little "behind" action as this was a clothing optional hot spring (Now you have been warned ha)! Tanden and I took a quick little trip down to Southern Idaho for a long weekend. Our first stop was Goldbug Hot Springs, which is outside of Salmon Idaho. I had never been to a hot springs before and neither had Tanden but I am so glad we went! Check out our little story and a few tips for if you decide you want to go! 

We drove into Salmon from Coeur d' Alene late Friday evening for the night. The drive was absolutely gorgeous, man if you haven't been to northern Idaho you are missing out! The next morning we decided to get an early start since we had heard the hot springs can get pretty crowded especially on the weekend.  We left the hotel around 7 and drove south to the trailhead. The hike is 2 miles in, the beginning is fairly easy with about a half a mile of decent steepness at the end. We are avid hikers and both really enjoyed the journey but could definitely see this being a little difficult for some.

As we reached the top, we began discussing where we should put our swimsuits on. I looked over to the left where a couple, probably in their late 60's, were standing (in the nude) drying off from their dip. We had read online this was clothing optional (as many hot springs are) so this did not come as a big surprise yet I think we both were still a little taken back to just see two people out in the forest naked. We walked over to the springs and where another couple were in the pool, kinda hippie vibe, also nude. At this point we looked at each other in a kind of  "screw it" way and stripped down, unclad we hopped in. 

Swim Top Designed By Tanden Launder 

Swim Top Designed By Tanden Launder 

The water felt perfect, I'm not normally a get naked in nature type of gal but this experience was something else! It felt so freeing just swimming around in warm water looking out at the hills, I absolutely loved it.  The older couple left and then the younger couple went down to a different section of the pool below so we had the main hot springs to ourselves. When we first discussed going up to the hot springs we didn't think we would stay long, but we were having so much fun we ended up staying for at least an hour!  I think so rarely we get to just have fun being in nature and being comfortable in our own bodies, there are so few times when this is even possible. It felt so refreshing to not think of nakedness in a sexualized way, to just be okay being me in front of other people. It was a really cool experience to have and it was the first time I had really ever done something like that. Some of you may think this all sounds so strange, to that I say just give it a try, it is not for everyone. So that was the main experience but I did add some tips and advice below for those of you who might want to journey over to this hot springs or maybe to another one in the future! 


tips and advice 

  • If you arrive early don't be surprised if people are strutting in their birthday suits.
  • You can camp up there just not within 500 feet of the hot springs (we wish we had just done this but didn't realize we could, definitely will if we go there again). 
  • Go as early as you can to avoid the crowd, unless you want to avoid those who dip in the nude.
  • Bring water for the hike, it can get pretty hot. 
  • Watch out for rattle snakes.
  • Water shoes really aren't necessary. 
  •  If you are considering going naked, just give it a try, I am actually really glad I did! 

 I hope you enjoyed this post on the Goldbug Hot Springs and I hope this encourages you to go give it a try! 

xx nichole