A day spent soaking in California outdoors is always a good day. Nestled between the eastern escarpment of the Sierra Nevadas and the Glass Mountain Ridge, Wild Willy’s Hot Spring is a short 0.25-mile boardwalk jaunt to an excellent and steamy hot spring adventure.
Wild Willy’s, also known as “Crowley Hot Springs,” is located just a short 40-minute drive south from Mammoth Lakes to Bishop, California. Breathtaking views and a small creek that flows into two hot spring pools make up your Wild Willy’s experience.
Natural Hot Springs Pools
With water temperatures ranging between 95 and 105 degrees Fahrenheit, visitors are sure to have a warm and relaxing time. The smaller pool is the warmest, stretching about 10 feet wide and three feet deep. You can submerge yourself when sitting down, but it is maxed out at 2-3 soakers.
Approximately 50 feet away, the larger pool is the main draw. With stunning blue water, it is deeper and able to comfortably hold a group of 15-20 people. Both pools are all natural with the exception that they have been reinforced with cement and slightly built up.
For a truly magical experience, visit this public natural hot spring at sunrise and enjoy the first peaceful moments of the day when you have the entire place to yourself.
Facilities and Nearby Camping
There are no facilities at Wild Willy’s Hot Spring. The hot spring is on public land, but please be thoughtful when exploring and remember to pack out all of your trash. V
Visitors are expected to take great care of the surrounding area. Please practice Leave No Trace principles and bring cans instead of glass bottles for your beverages.
Camping is allowed on all BLM land such as that surrounding Wild Willy’s, but not directly at hte springs. To make sure you are in a designated camping area and to find out more information and maps, click here or call 760-872-5000. The closest campground is Brown’s Owens River Campground, situated about 5 miles drive, 10-15 minutes.
Though the spring, as well as camping, is open all year long, it’s recommended that visitors only camp near the summer’s end. Mountain temperatures drop below freezing in the spring.
Things to bring:
- Water shoes
- Dogs are allowed
- Food and drink, no glass allowed
- Bags to carry out your trash – Leave No Trace
- Camping gear
From Bishop, take Highway 395 North to Benton Crossing Road where a green church will be the most obvious landmark. Travel 3 miles on Benton Crossing until you pass the second cow grate. At the grate, immediately take the dirt road on your right.
Slowly bump along this road for 1.5 miles until you reach a dirt parking lot with logs. This marks the area where you will park. You will clearly see the elevated boardwalk from the parking area.
Still, looking for more warm water adventures? Don’t miss another fun stop after leaving Wild Willy’s. You can travel 20 minutes up the road, north on Highway 395, and visit the Hot Creek Geological Site and geothermal area. However, as the water temperatures change rapidly at the Hot Creek Geological Site, you are now allowed to go in the water.
Address: Benton Crossing Road, Benton Crossing, California 93546
- South of Mammoth Lakes, CA, off of HWY 395
- Park in the dirt lot lined with logs
- Hike 0.25 miles across the wooden boardwalk
- Do not hike off the trail
Hours of Operation: 24 Hours/Day