Cody, Wyoming is situated near what is known as the Cody Hydrothermal System, which is composed of at least three different hot springs within 5 miles of town. Although none are really accessible, this system runs along the Shoshone River between Cody and the Buffalo Bill Reservoir.
The first three sites on this list are primitive hot springs, meaning they are undeveloped and generally lack amenities like restrooms and showers. As with any primitive hot spring, do your own research, and always be respectful to the environment by following Leave No Trace principles and posted signs and warnings.
Information on these springs is extremely limited, so it’s hard to tell which springs, if any, are open to the public. So for this reason skip DeMaris, Shoshone, and Needles Hot Springs, and day-trip to our fourth listed locale. In addition to the Cody Hydrothermal System, Cody is found just over an hour away from one of Wyoming’s most famous hot spring areas, Hot Springs State Park, in Thermopolis.
Organized by distance from downtown, here are four hot springs near Cody, WY:
CLOSED | DeMaris Springs (4.5 miles)
DeMaris Hot Springs is the first spring on the drive out of Cody. Part of the Cody Hydrothermal System, the site features an impressive 40-foot by 60-foot pool, but it is privately owned, and no public access is currently available.
Nevertheless, this spring holds an important part in Cody’s history. First brought to popularity by Charles DeMaris in 1886, he built a large hotel next to the springs and began advertising its apparently remarkable healing qualities. The hot spring changed hands throughout the year, and it was eventually closed to the public in 1993 due to liability after many years of public use.
Shoshone Springs (5 miles)
Heading west out of Cody, Shoshone Hot Springs is the next geothermal feature along the river. Mapped by William Clark, who was one half of the famous Lewis & Clark expedition, in 1810, this hot spring is located directly adjacent to the Shoshone River.
Geothermally heated water emerges from the ground, and it stays in the manmade pool thanks to a series of rock walls built up over time. Temperatures in the pool hover between 82-93° F depending on the flow of the spring and the river’s water level.
To access Shoshone Hot Springs, park at the Hayden Arch Bridge Trailhead. The primitive pool is not accessible during spring run-off, and it’s also fully submerged when nearby Buffalo Bill Dam is letting out water. For that reason, avoid visiting during spring.
Needles Springs (5 miles)
Another component of the Cody Hydrothermal System, Needle Hot Springs is located just east of the Hayden Arch Bridge. Here, underwater vents flow out 73° F water. Information on public access is limited, so tread carefully if attempting a visit.
Hot Springs State Park (85 miles)
For a more polished experience, consider heading southwest of Cody towards Thermopolis, the site of Hot Springs State Park. Wyoming’s first state park, Hot Springs is built at an impressive site of geothermal activity in Thermopolis.
More than 8,000 gallons of water flow out of the spring every 24 hours at a temperature of 128° F. In addition to approximately six miles of hiking trails and the popular Swinging Bridge suspension bridge, the primary attractions of the park are the hot spring pools.
The Hot Springs State Park Bathhouse is the main place for soaking. With indoor and outdoor pools maintained at 104° F, this is the perfect place for a relaxing soak.
More opportunities for soaking are available at Hellie’s Tepee Pools. Inside, find a large pool with an impressive water slide, a hot tub, a dry sauna, and a steam room. Outside, Hellie’s offers a pool heated between 94 and 100° F, a large outdoor waterslide open from Memorial Day to Labor Day, and an additional hot tub. After swimming or soaking, stop by the Tipi Grill for a bite to eat.
These have been some of the most popular hot springs within close proximity to Cody. Have a fun and relaxing visit to the Cowboy State!