Wild Willy’s Hot Springs are one of the popular destinations if you ever want to soak in the steamy Hot Springs of California. Due to their location across the plains between the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountain Range and the Western Glassy Mountain Range, this place has one of the magnificent and picturesque views you will ever come across. These Hot Springs are also called Mammoth Lake Hot Springs due to their location to the south of the town of Mammoth Lakes.
- 1 A Little Background…
- 2 Activities to do at Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
- 3 Partying
- 4 Photo Shoots
- 5 Best Time to Visit Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
- 6 Location of Wild Willy’s Hot Springs and Hiking Trail
- 7 Hiking near Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
- 8 Camping Here
- 9 Popular Tourist Attractions nearby
- 10 Long Valley Caldera of California
- 11 Hot Creek Geological Site and Hiking Trail
- 12 Reviews about the Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
- 13 Pros & Cons
- 14 Conclusion
- 15 Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ’s)
A Little Background…
These wild willy’s hot springs consist of two pools which are – a smaller heart-shaped one on the left side which is 10 feet wide with 3 feet deep shallow pool and a much bigger one on the right side which is 50 feet wide and much deeper.
Apart from the depth and width, the temperatures of the pools also vary. The bigger pool has a much lower temperature compared to the Smaller one. If you are okay with a little more heat, the Smaller pool is the ideal one for you. I highly recommend you to visit this location during Sunrise or Sunset as the sun setting through the mountains creates a magnificent view across the plains.
A Super Volcano is considered to be the reason for the creation of Wild Willy’s Hot Springs. This Super Volcano is pressured by a 240 cubic mile of Molten Magma which is spread across the valley closer to the Mammoth Lakes. This volcano is also the reason for the other hot springs that are created nearby for you to enjoy. These springs are considered to be sacred to the many tribes that lived here before modern times.
Crowley Hot Springs are more accessible to people due to their location being closer to Highway 395. However, this might result in overcrowding of this place during the weekends. Camping in these beautiful locations with the plains of the valley spreading towards the horizon and the mountains standing grandly behind is frankly quite stunning.
Activities to do at Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
Generally, there are not many activities you can partake in near Wild Willy’s Hot Springs. Apart from soaking in the Hot Springs, or hiking through the trails leading to the Hot Springs, that is. However, there are a few activities that mostly occur specifically near the Wild Willy’s Hot Springs such as partying, Photo Shoots, Off-Road Adventures through the valley.
Mammoth Lakes Hot Springs is a sacred location for Native Americans and Early American Settlers. However, it has become a prime spot for parties. Everyone wants to have a drink and soak in these Hot Springs and enjoy the scenic location of the valley. These illegal parties destroy the surrounding environment of Hot Springs and can be harmful to Crowley Hot Springs in the long run.
Partying here is strictly prohibited, which includes restrictions on consuming alcohol etc. Apart from this, all other activities such as hiking, Photo-Shoots, and Off-Road Adventures are legal to partake in.
The Picturesque landscape around Wild Willy’s Hot Springs is one of the best places for Photo Shoots. Due to the mountain ranges on the western and eastern sides of the Hot Springs, these are some of the most sought-out destinations for capturing yourself with stunning scenery in the backdrop. The planes spreading across the valley create some of the best views.
This place is also known for the Off-Road Vehicle tracks near Mammoth Lakes. Popular tracks are present for Four Wheelers as well as Two Wheelers. Although there are some restrictions such as-
- Only California State vehicles are only allowed.
- Cars must have 4-Wheel Drive.
- Protective gear like helmets, bodysuits, and Googles are needed if you are riding Two Wheelers.
Best Time to Visit Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
Wild Willy’s are open to everyone all year long. During Winter, the surrounding valley and the distant mountain peaks are covered with a thick blanket of snow, making it a winter wonderland. Spring marks the birth of fresh grass all across the valley. Whereas in the Summer and Fall, the grasslands in the valley turn into desert landscapes. All seasons have different impacts on the surrounding environment of the mammoth lakes Hot springs. So it is ideal for all to visit in different seasons as the valley changes its aesthetic.
Location of Wild Willy’s Hot Springs and Hiking Trail
Wild Willy’s Hot Springs are located towards the south of Mammoth Lake in California. To reach this place, you should head south on Highway 395 and take a left at the Benton crossing, after which head straight for almost 3 miles. As you drive, please keep a lookout for the Cattle Farms on the right side, and after passing through the second farm, take the first right towards the dirt road. Follow this road for 1.5 miles, which leads onto a Dirt Parking Lot. Now follow through the wooden Boardwalk that disappears into the valley towards the horizon. At the end of this trail, you are greeted by Wild Willy’s Hot Springs.
Hiking near Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
The hiking trail leading to the Wild Willy’s Hot Springs is only 0.2 miles long. Moreover, the trail here is covered by a wooden boardwalk that extends towards the Hot Springs. As a result, Trekking here is much easier, and it is suitable for all people with or without a hiking experience. Walking through the Boardwalk can be exhilarating in a way, making you feel like you are on a yellow brick road. Here, as it extends into the valley surrounded by the mountains at the distance, a wonderful landscape opens up to you.
Wild Willy’s Hot Springs Camping ground is one of the best locations for you to camp as it has the “magic” all around. However, setting up a camp is only allowed in the parking lot away from the Hot Springs. As you’re only a short distance from the springs, it is not a bad place to be, in the Long Valley Caldera of California.
Being a popular destination among the people of California, this place is crowded during most weekends. You can find camps being set up all around you as the people wait to witness the Sun rising and setting through the mountains. Apart from these, people here also set up camps to witness the brightest night sky shining with stars far away from the Bustling Towns and Cities.
Popular Tourist Attractions nearby
There are many attractive destinations near the Wild Willy’s Hot Springs as they have located in the Long Valley Caldera of California closer to the Town of Mammoth Lakes.
Long Valley Caldera of California
This valley is a huge depression that is formed due to a volcanic eruption millennia ago. This valley is one of the most beautiful locations in all of California. The valley is spread for thousands of kilometers in between the Sierra Nevada Mountains in the east and Glassy Mountains in the west. These Mountains standing grandly at the sides of the valleys create a magnificent landscape for you to witness. This valley is known for its various lakes and hot springs spread across the State of California.
Hot Creek Geological Site and Hiking Trail
This beautiful Geological site was Calderara Hot Spring that was shut down due to an unpredictable rise in the temperature of the pool. The Hot Spring here often reaches a temperature of 200 degrees, which is extremely dangerous for the visitors. This site is also the starting point of a hiking trail that goes through the Gorgeous Canyon offering us a great view of the mountains nearby. The Trail is 2.30 miles long, and it bends towards the start, creating a circular pathway. This trail is considered best suited for people with Moderate Hiking skills. Although, walking through the trail as it follows through the ravine below is one of the best experiences you have come across as it has some stunning views of all of California.
It is one of the most grandiose lakes here in California. This lake sits at the top of the mountains, making it harder to reach. Although, there is a trail called Sherwin lake trail which snakes through this mountainous terrain towards Valentine lake. The Trail here is best suited for moderate hikers as it stretches almost 17.7 km long through the rugged rocky outcrops. The scenery you come across as you ascend through the trail is Amazing, but the most beautifully dystopian location here is the lake itself. It almost looks like something out of Zdzislaw Beksinski’s mind. The lake is spread along the Canyons between the mountain tops.
This lake is mostly known for its fishing habitats, as a result, it is one of the best places to catch fish here in California. The lake is fed by the Owens River as it flows through the Long Valley.
This lake is spread across an area of 12 miles and is home to the largest Trout fishes you have ever seen, and fishing is only permitted during Autumn Apart from being a prime fishing spot, it has also become the ideal location for various types of Water sports.
People visiting the Hot Springs complain about the trash left by others near the pools, which further damages the environment around the hot springs.
we request all the people visiting these Hot Springs to take out the trash back to their car, as the surrounding shrub grasslands are highly sensitive. This ecological system is fragile, and leaving trash behind does not provide a sustainable way forward for this area. It is best to leave the popular tourist places safe from plastics and other types of pollution.
The Hot Springs are natural pools produced by volcanic activities under the surface, which can be polluted by ours trash. So we must protect these pools from polluting by Human activities. As they are some jewels created by the nature for our joy.
Reviews about the Wild Willy’s Hot Springs
The reviews given by people across various platforms are all positive. As a result, this location is one of the highest-rated locations in Long Valley of California. Tourists often praise this Hot Springs as one of the best and most memorable locations they have ever visited due to the steamed hot springs located in the valley. The people are often left mesmerized by the blue skies and Valley extending towards the Mountains.
Pros & Cons
- Accessible easily through the State Highway.
- Beautiful Scenery.
- Camping is permitted.
- Steamy Hot Springs.
- Open all year.
- Natural pools with muddy sand beds.
- Trash left by Tourists
- No wildlife nearby
Wild Willy’s Hot Springs are one of the unique hot springs you have ever come across, as it has the best scenic views of the Long Valley and the Sierra Mountains. I highly recommend you to visit this place as it has always received high ratings from all those visiting. Although, being a popular destination often leads to overcrowding of the people during weekends. It is ideal for you to visit during weekdays and most importantly, don’t miss the sunrise and sunset. Tourists these days often camp here at night for stargazing. And also these Hot Springs are located closer to State Highway 395 which makes them much more accessible.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ’s)
Yes, Tourists are permitted to set up camps in this location. However, it is only permitted in the wide parking lot as the surrounding environment is sensitive.
Yes, the Hot Springs are open to people all year long. Moreover, visiting this location during the winter is ideal as you can come across some stunning views of snow-cropped sierra mountains in the distance as you soak in the Steamy Hot Springs.
Yes, being one of the most popular tourists attractions in the “Long valley Caldera” it is often crowded. However, weekdays are ideal for you if you want to spend some time alone.
Yes, there is a large parking area at the end of the gravel road.