Located near a small town of Bridgeport in the Eastern Sierra Nevada, Travertine Hot Springs is one of the most popular hot springs in California. The area, managed by BLM, is known for its unique geological and ecological features including colorful travertine deposits, fumaroles, bubbling hot pools hidden under bright ridges of limestone. In addition, amazing views of the High Sierra and bathing opportunities with easy access from Highway 395 make this place extremely popular.
Travertine Hot Springs a series of hot mineral springs emerging along several parallel travertine ridges. Travertine is a chemically precipitated limestone, formed by calcium carbonate from the hot springs. The springs water at a temperature of 180-200°F is accumulated into the underground reservoir. Because of low flow rates, the scalding hot water cools down and reaches the pools to moderate temperatures between 80 and 125°F.
There are multiple pools. One of them is a concrete small tub (ten by five and two feet deep) on the parking lot. Emerging from the hill nearby, the hot water runs through the veins to the upper tub. The temperature was 122°F in the pool in April - too hot for soaking.
Hike 200 yards south along the travertine ridges and you will find four volunteers-built pools of 1-2 feet deep. The mineral water flows off the ridge at 110°F into the pools and then overflows to adjoining pools. The temperature ranges from 70°F to 110°F. The right pool is the hottest. Though the water is murky, those pools are the most popular.
There are a few more secluded pools down the hill with breathtaking views of the snow capped Sierra Mountains. The temperatures in the lower pools are 98°F.
Travertine Hot Spring | Facts
Location: 2.2 miles southeast of Bridgeport • California • USA
Hiking distance: Short
Road Access: Any vehicle when the road is dry
Restrictions: No camping, no fires
Day-use fees: None
Elevation: 6,750 ft (2,057 m)
From Highway 395 near milepost 76 at the south edge of Bridgeport,
- Turn left onto Jack Sawyer Road, just before the Ranger Station
- Drive 0.3 miles onto paved road to the fork, bear left and continue on the dirt road for 1.4 miles to the parking area.