Posts Tagged hot springs

San Jose

Posted on July 16, 2012 by 3 Comments

Only ten kilometers away from the ritzy campsite in Villa Elisa, is a completely free campsite on the river in San Jose. And, San Jose also has some nice hot springs of their own at a fraction of the price of Villa Elisa. And, it has hot water slides. It’s Bode’s new favorite thing.

The muni campsite here is set up for hundreds of campers, so it must fill up the in summer. It’s late fall, so we had it to ourselves. It was kind of eerie – like camping in a graveyard. But, we did rest in peace.

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Filed Under: Argentina

Almost there…

Posted on July 14, 2012 by 3 Comments

We figured a good way to get over our long and frustrating drive would be to relax at some hot springs – there are lots to choose from in this area.

Villa Elisa was recommended and it was nice.  Too nice.

It’s pretty much in the middle of nowhere, but has all the amenities. A golf course. Spas. And, really expensive camping near some hot pools.

We took a day to soak, work on a few projects, and make our list of things to do on our visit to the U.S. We’d like to make some improvements in the “quality of life” department when we return, so we’re inspecting everything and trying to figure out if we can make it better. We can certainly use more lighting (LEDs). Just about every meal we’re eaten in the past 3 years has come from a single cast iron skillet… and, well, I’m not sure we can improve on that. Stuff like that. Suggestions welcomed.

Also, we’ve heard that some folks aren’t seeing our Facebook posts. I think this is a new ‘feature’.

You’re not missing anything important, of course, but if you don’t see our posts, hover over the ‘LIKE’ (or ‘LIKED’) button on our page and make sure that you have selected ‘SHOW IN NEWS FEED’.

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Filed Under: Argentina


Posted on September 1, 2011 by 2 Comments

When the holiday crowds finally left, we had the place all to ourselves. Our own mountain hot springs. Not bad at all – especially if you don’t mind frozen swimsuits in the morning.

This is also where we finally declared our point and shoot camera dead. We’ve hated it since we bought it, and barely 8 months later, it’s returning the (lack of) love. It always took crappy photos, so it will not be missed. If anyone wants a compact 12 MP camera that can’t image anything near the red end of the spectrum, says it’s waterproof but isn’t… you can have it. Pick-up required.

We left Fiambala with the plan of finding the nearest ‘large’ city and taking care of our evolving engine problems. We have been burning oil, and the compression on cylinder #3 has been low and getting worse.

We made it to the pleasant-enough town of Chilicitos where we spent two days failing to find any kind of parts for our old VW. At a minimum, I wanted to buy a new piston-cylinder set before pulling the motor – there was a perfectly fine campsite nearby that would have made an adequate work space.

The local parts shops had nothing and as far as I could tell, they couldn’t order the parts either. Again, there was a VW dealer in town willing to help, but ultimately just told us to head to Mendoza or Cordoba. Nine or so hours away.

What we did manage to accomplish in our two days here was to make some more contacts further south. We eventually decided set course for Mendoza. Sounds like a decent place to be stranded.

After exactly 9 hours on the road – including frequent stops to add oil and pick up parts that fell off – we arrived at the doorstep of Beto Oros and the Volkswagen Club of Mendoza.

Also, if you’re interested, Jenn Miller interviewed us a while back for Uncommon Childhood. Thanks Jenn!



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Filed Under: Argentina

Las Termas de Fiambalá

Posted on August 30, 2011 by 2 Comments

Fiambalá lived up to the hype. It was a holiday weekend and a total scene.

The hot springs are nestled cliff-side at the end of a steep road and are sight to see themselves. A dozen or so waterfall-filled pools rise up the mountain and vary in temperature from 25°C to 45°C.

Because of “La Dia del Niño,” we had to share the springs with a hundred or more mate-sipping parilla-cooking Argentines. It was awesome.

Unfortunately, we failed to capture our fun weekend on film. We were too busy soaking and relaxing.

And, we still haven’t fully embraced a mate habit, but it might happen if we stay much longer.

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Filed Under: Argentina

Gila Hot Springs and Cave Dwellings

Posted on January 19, 2010 by 3 Comments

We headed across New Mexico to the Gila National Forest. The Cliff Dwellings and hot springs are 2 hours from the closest town of Silver City. The drive was stellar. There are towers of rock that formed these amazing structures. I’ve never seen anything like them.

We arrived after 4 so we headed to the privately owned hot springs a coupe miles from the park. Sweet deal. 3 different pools, all with a beautiful red rock cliff background. We decided to camp there, despite the dropping temperatures. The hot springs were about 10 steps from our van, so we could easily have a dip to warm up. We were pretty cold overnight and woke to find ice on the walls of the van. Everything was frozen and we waited as long as we could for the sun to come over the mountains and hit the van before getting out of bed. A quick soak in the hot springs warmed us right up, and we bundled up for our hike to the cave dwellings.

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When we reached the Visitor’s Center we found out it had reached 10 degrees the night before. I’ve put a moratorium on camping below 25 now. Bode LOVES visitor’s centers. Everywhere we go he asks if there is one. Anyway, we spent a long time inside the Gila VC watching a film and looking at the artifacts they’ve found in the cliffs….and warming up.

From the photos, we were a bit skeptical. They didn’t look as cool as the photos we’ve seen of Mesa Verde, but we aren’t planning to go that far north. But after the 30 minute hike, which started with snowball fights and ended with us taking off our gloves and jackets in the warm sunshine,  we were in awe. The 7 caves served as home to the Mogollon people who lived in this area over 700 years ago…and they let us hike right through them. Pretty awesome.

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Filed Under: SouthWest

Mega-marts and More Hot Springs

Posted on October 14, 2009 by 8 Comments

We left Vancouver to head east, but that involved unsuccessful stops at 2 different Mega-marts looking for tire chains. Ugh. We also had no luck at the walk-in pharmacy for flu shots, and other various big-box store stops. This was just like being in Oakland. To top it off, it was the beginning of a holiday weekend (Canadian Thanksgiving) and we were on a highway with everyone else. No views, just traffic.

So, there were lots of uninteresting stops and I was really glad when we finally made it to Harrison Hot Springs.  The hot springs were basically just a large warm indoor pool with sulfur, but the town and view were amazing. There’s also a big fancy resort next door, but we skipped the luxury for an opportunity to camp in the freezing cold.  Although it was chilly, the sky was clear so we headed over to Sasquatch Provincial Park for the night.

No Yeti to be found, but we did find other bandits. At one point, I heard Jason talking outside and figured it was another camper, but then I saw him waving his arms and stomping. I finally went out to see what he was doing, and he was trying to scare away a family of raccoons. We ate in the van while the raccoons returned to tear into our garbage. After we cleaned that up, I took the dishes to wash them. I couldn’t find a faucet and it was dark and really cold. So, I piled up the dirty dishes in our plastic camping box, put the lid on it, and put 2 boxes on top of that. The next morning we saw that it was no match for a determined coon.

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Bode stayed inside the van most of the evening. It was pretty cold out, and he just got a new movie. So much for his taste in music. This movie featured the 80′s classic Axel F, and he’s been humming it for 2 days now.

After his movie, Jason and I decided to watch one of our movies. We brought a ton of films, but I think we’ve only watched one so far. Jason made an interesting selection in The Mosquito Coast. It is about an inventor who moves his family to the jungles of Central America with disastrous results. Foreshadowing?

The cold morning got us up an out of the campsite pretty quickly. Washing dishes is always a downer, but doing it in sub-freezing conditions is worse.  We went back into Harrison and grabbed warmed drinks while Bode played on the beach  playground. The wind was carrying sand around us so thick we could barely see, but we still had to promise Bode a better playground to convince him to leave. Luckily, there was one in the next town across from a laundromat. It was still so windy that the laundromat sign kept blowing down.

Once we were on the road again we had to keep stopping for Jason to check the timing, check on weird noises, and adjust something called the dwell. I’m not sure what that all means, but we aren’t getting very far. Luckily, at this pit stop I have found a wireless connection.

We’re headed into the mountains, and it is cold (we’re in one of the blue parts of the image below!) And, now there is some sort of cricket noise coming from the back of the bus… fingers crossed!

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Olympic Event

Posted on October 7, 2009 by No Comments

The next day it was rainy, and time once again for our new favorite rainy day activity. There is a hot spring on the tip of the Olympic peninsula.  Sol Duc Hot Springs is more resorty and the complete opposite of  Bagby Springs. This time Bode specifically requested that the next hot tub not be an old tree trunk. Man, it’s hard to please a 4 year old, but this request was easy to accommodate.

He also wants a robot that does whatever he asks him to…for example get us a soy hot chocolate or a speed racer toy. But that is another story.

The pools were nice. There were 4 in all, but one was too cold and one was too hot.  We were impressed to see that the lifeguard on duty also had the responsibility of taking regular samples and running assays from each of the pools.  Checking for sulfur (and ?) content, I suppose.  It was a bit odd that he put on gloves and used tongs to take water samples from the pools we were soaking in.

As usual, we met some nice folks and as usual, one guy had a Westfalia in the 70′s and stories to tell. He also gave us some great suggestions on where to go on Vancouver Island.  His daughter runs an all-girl surf school in Tofino.  Canadian surf town, eh?

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We cruised around the Olympic peninsula and it is truly beautiful.  Lake Crescent is stunning. The rainforest here is supposedly one of the wettest places on Earth and we can verify that it’s wet.  More photos than story today, as this was a pretty lazy day.

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Filed Under: Washington

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