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Camping Adventure at Crazy Creek Hot Pools Resort

British Columbia, Canada, is a stunning province with soaring mountain ranges. Those majestic mountains provide breathtaking views and amazing hikes and are rich in geothermal activity. Geothermal activity equals hot springs and pools. I am making a personal goal to visit at least one new hot pool every summer road trip. Last summer, I visited Nakusp Hot Springs (see this post for more inspiration on Nakusp). This summer's road trip included travel along the Hot Springs Route. I have taken full advantage. I described visiting Radium Hot Springs this summer in last week's post. Today, I will be sharing the scoop on Crazy Creek Hot Pools Resort in Malakwa, BC, the former site of Taft, BC.


As a youngster, my family visited Harrison Hot Springs nearby (link to my solo spa trip here). Later, my children and I spent our summers there. Hot spring soaking was a once-a-year thing. During a marvellous road trip around Iceland, ATB#1 (Approved Travel Buddy) and I participated in the daily "hot pot" ritual, and I vowed to make hot springs a more significant part of my life. See what we learned about hot pool etiquette in my post Iceland Know Before You Go here.

A view of 4 organically sahped pools in a mountain setting
The Hot Pools at Crazy Creek Resort

Travel in British Columbia

Public transportation is excellent in the cities, but choices are few once you get out of the metropolitan areas. A regular bus service between Vancouver and Calgary stops in many beautiful towns along the way, but for those wanting more flexibility, a road trip is the best way to explore. There are many private, provincial, and national campgrounds. The government campgrounds are usually pretty basic. Some only provide the necessities (pit toilets, potable water, garbage), while others include showers, flush toilets, and naturalist programs. Some of the larger parks offer yurts or tent cabins. Very few provincial campgrounds have electrical/water hookups for RVs.

A flat gravel pad surrounded by trees
The forested sites at Crazy Creek Resort

Most private campgrounds offer a range of camping choices for RVs, tents, and cars, with level sites and full hookups. Many also offer cabins. Some cabins are "self-catered," meaning they only provide shelter, a bed with a mattress, and a kitchen area. Visitors must bring bedding and cooking equipment. Other cabins can be luxurious, with everything provided, like hotel rooms. For those considering renting an RV or campervan, check out my post on renting in Metro Vancouver here.


Where Is Crazy Creek? Getting There

Crazy Creek Resort is on the TransCanada Highway, about halfway between Sicamous and Revelstoke. It's also about halfway between Vancouver and Calgary, approximately 5.5 hours from Vancouver or 5 hours from Calgary.


Accommodations Available at Crazy Creek Resort

For those who are passing through, Crazy Creek Resort offers day passes but I suggest staying at least one night. Whether you camp or book accommodations, you can find what you are looking for at the resort.


Camping

Campers can choose from open or forested sites, with or without services. I arrived late Monday afternoon and stayed two nights in an open site with water and 30 amp power, which cost me $55. Trains pass by the campsite but do not run overnight. If you choose a creekside site, the creek masks the sounds.


Cabins and Suites

Not everyone enjoys camping, and for many visitors, dealing with all the equipment needed is a headache they don't want. Crazy Creek offers both cabins and suites, all of which are beautifully designed and fully equipped. I would book one of these if I were visiting in the winter.

A shingled mobile hole with a deck and porch nestled in the forest
One of the cabins at Crazy Creek. It has all the comforts of home.

There are different rates for each, and prices vary seasonally. To see prices and to reserve, go to their website.


A Bit of Background

This property was a railway and sawmill settlement called Taft for a brief period in the early 1900s. When the logging operation closed in the 1940s, the population gradually abandoned the area.


Vic and Alice Bates purchased the land here privately in the early 2000s and immediately began developing it into a popular resort.

Hot Springs vs Hot Pools

Hot Springs are natural springs of water heated geothermally from deep underground. These mineral-heavy springs can be warm or scalding hot, depending upon how the spring mixes with creeks, rivers, and groundwater as it moves to the surface. A strong sulphur odour usually accompanies them. Undeveloped springs locations often require a hike.

a steaming muddy-bottomed pond surrounded by rocks
Harrison Hot Springs source run off

Hot Pools, or geothermal pools, are man-made pools that pipe in water from natural sources and control heat and hygiene. The source has often been capped so that all visitors see is a pump station. Crazy Creek is a Hot Pool Resort.


Hot springs have enjoyed a reputation for healing and rejuvenation dating back to the original Indigenous peoples. In the early 1900s, spending time at a hot springs resort became the travel trend for the wealthy. With the advent of automobiles and improved road access, hot spring resorts were booming.

A bright blue pool with mountains behind, on a sunny day
Hot Pool at Crazy Creek Resort

Soaking in a hot spring is said to reduce pain, relax muscles, and help increase flexibility. Several decades after sustaining severe injuries in a car accident, arthritis is settling into my previously broken bones. I feel relaxed yet energetic after soaking in the waters. The stunning views that surround each soak connect me to nature. It's also a great way to spend a less-than-ideal weather day when other outdoor activities are unappealing.

Exploring the Resort

While the main attraction of Crazy Creek Hot Pools Resort is the hot pools, there is much to explore when you are not soaking. Check out some of the ruins on the property, lay on their beach, or cross the highway to follow a trail leading to a suspension bridge and waterfall. Treat yourself to an ice cream or a beer at the restaurant and gift shop at the end of the suspension bridge.

A large cabin-inspired building with a metal green roof at the end of a gravel path. A snow capped mountain with dramatic skies in the background
Main Office, Pools, and Gift Shop at Crazy Creek

Ruins Trail Walk

I followed the short trail from my campsite to the hot pools. I was camped near the site of the former fish hatchery.

long concrete pools with trees and vegetatio growing within
Former fish hatchery

Along the way, markers showed where to look for the ruins of the general store, and the railway station.

The most interesting site for me was the former sawmill, which was more intact than the others. I realized later that I could have also seen the ruins of the former hotel, but unfortunately, I didn't explore the area near the beach.

crumbling 2 story cement walls covered with moss with trees and other vegetation growing within
The saw mill ruins

Beaches

The weather wasn't great while I was visiting, so I didn't have the inclination to go to the beach. The resort has 2 beach areas beside the Eagle River, on the opposite side of the train tracks. This is where the hotel ruins are located.


Suspension Bridge and Gift Shop

The resort includes an overpass to cross the highway. On the opposite side is a trail that leads to a suspension bridge over Crazy Creek waterfall. After crossing the suspension bridge, there is an activity area with a restaurant/snack bar and children's play area. To return to the resort, you follow the same path back. There is an additional charge for an all-day pass ($10 with resort discount).


This easy trail with beautiful tall trees was surprisingly peaceful, considering its proximity to the highway. Soon, birdsong and the rushing creek waters are the only sounds heard.


The suspension bridge had little sway, even when a group of teens tried to rock it! Below the bridge, on each side, are viewing platforms that give more views of the beautiful waterfall.


The Gift Shop area would be great for a cool drink or ice cream on a sunny afternoon. The restaurant offers pizza, sandwiches, tacos, and hot dogs for those who have an appetite.


Try your hand at (plastic) axe throwing, examine the gardens, and throw some hoops. There are plenty of reasons to linger here.



The Pools

The pool complex includes a gift/convenience shop, showers, change rooms, and lockers. There are four pools: three hot pools and a small cold plunge pool (12C/54F). The three hot pools have temperatures ranging from 40C/104F to 32C/90F. The pool deck includes lounge chairs and shade umbrellas. While there were plenty of people, I never felt crowded.


Final Thoughts

A British Columbia road trip promises special memories unique to the area. Soaking in a hot pool with the stars twinkling overhead as all your hiker's aches melt away will be one of those special memories. Consider Crazy Creek Resort as a stop on a road trip heading to the National Parks or into the Interior of British Columbia.


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The author on the suspension bridge

4 comentários


Convidado:
a day ago

I would certainly indulge myself with both hot springs and hot pools. A rewarding soak from a long road trip just hits the spot. A walk to the suspension bridge will be a nice added activity from a road trip recuperation while driving along the inner British Columbian highway #flyingbaguette


Jan - https://flyingbaguette.com/

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Lyn (aka Jazz)
Lyn (aka Jazz)
11 hours ago
Respondendo a

I found this resort to have plenty to keep me busy and interested for a couple of days. I love a good soak after a long day or just to warm myself through on a dodgy day.

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Convidado:
4 days ago

I have to say that if I had to choose between Hot Springs and Hot Pools, my decision would definitely go to Hot Springs.

The resort seems to be a good option for those who want to relax and enjoy wonderful scenery at the same time, as there is pure nature all around.

I particularly enjoyed the Ruins Trail Walk, which was definitely an activity that would appeal to me. All the mystique of the ruins surrounded by nature gives the trail a thriller movie feel :) Angela | Blonde Around The World Travel -

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Lyn (aka Jazz)
Lyn (aka Jazz)
4 days ago
Respondendo a

Hot Springs are a better choice when available. for sure! Unfortunately most true nature pools here in BC are usually small and require strenuous hikes. Almost, if not all, the accessible springs were capped and piped in the early 1900s. heh, I'm glad I didn't imagine the thriller movie theme but yes, it is perfect for that!

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