Manitou Springs got its name from the natural mineral springs around town. Some of them are private but a few are public. All the water is potable, so grab your drinking cup and visit the springs with me.
Where to park
Park in Memorial Park in Manitou Springs. Manitou Springs is about 10 minutes west of Colorado Springs on highway 24. Parking is free. If you park farther into town you will have to pay to park in the street.
Walking map of the public springs
Offiically there are eight public springs in Manitou Springs. The Manitou Springs Heritage Center has a map showing the public springs.
Seven Minute Springs
If you park at Memorial Park, Seven Minute Spring is pretty easy to find. Look for the gazebo on the north side of the park.
Apparently Seven Minute Spring got it’s name because originally it erupted every seven minutes like a mini Old Faithful. Nowadays it has been modernized and water flows constantly from this spring.
Head out of the park to Manitou Avenue and take a right.
Walk up the street for about 5 minutes and Shoshone Spring will be on your right.
Continue up the street for another minute until you see the Manitou Springs Arcade. Navaho Spring is located on the back side of Patsy’s.
Unfortunely this spring has been dry for quite a while. But you still need to find it, and the Arcade is one of my favorite places in town.
While you are here, though it’s not one of the official springs, go inside the Shops at the Spa.
It’s blocked off, so you can look, but you can’t touch.
Less than a minute past Patsy’s and Navaho Spring, you will come upon Cheyenne Spring.
Up until this point the springs are easy to find as you just walk up Manitou Avenue. Stratton Spring is across the street but then you will miss Wheeler Spring.
Go back behind Patsy’s to Navaho Spring, and continue all the way through the Arcade until you come to another road.
Make a left and follow the road to the left.
Soda Springs park will soon appear ahead on your left. Before you get to the park, Wheeler Spring is across the street.
If you know where you are going, cut through Soda Springs Park to the traffic circle by Ruxton Road. If not, cut back the way you came through the arcade and go back to Cheyenne Spring. Cross the street and turn right, up the hill.
Within a minute you will come to Stratton Spring.
From Stratton Spring, continue up the hill to the traffic circle. Take a left on Ruxton and follow Ruxton for about two more minutes. It comes out of a building so be sure to look carefully.
Iron Spring is the most challenging spring to get to on foot. To get to it continue up Ruxton for 10 more minutes. Be aware that the walk is entirely uphill. A minute or two into the walk, on your right, you will see Miramont Castle if you want to stop and look around there.
Anyway, after about 10 minutes you will come to a gazebo that is Iron Spring.
An interesting story from the plaque at Iron Spring: In 19010, Joseph “Hiestand improved the water’s taste by creating the world’s first soda fountain to use naturally-carbonated mineral water; flavored with lemon or orange and served at an elegant marble bar.” “He built the pavilion you see today over a large font with an electrically-lit glass ball into which the iron water sprayed.”
Summary – Springs in Manitou Springs
For something fun, active and free, take a walk through Manitou Springs and sample the water from the town’s mineral springs.