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It's easy to get naked in Colorado.
That is, with oodles of open space and forested land for backcountry adventures, it's not too difficult to find a secluded spot where no one would notice (or care) if you lay out on a boulder or cool off in a refreshing river in the buff.
Still, there are certain spots in the state where taking your clothes off is thoroughly accepted (or expected), including hot-springs resorts that are clothing-optional.
Here's a peek of Colorado's best places to get undressed.
Orvis Hot Springs
Orvis Hot Springs is a year-round, clothing-optional, natural hot springs resort in Ridgway, Colorado. That's close to Ouray, one of the most scenic towns in the state. (Seriously, it looks like a little Switzerland.) What's cool about Orvis is that it doesn't heat or treat its water in any way; all the minerals that soothe your skin and sore muscles are completely natural. Also, its water is packed with lithium instead of sulfur, so it doesn't stink like a rotten egg.
The property has several different soaking areas, and four are outside, surrounded by lush and colorful gardens that make it feel like the Garden of Eden. These surreal pools are especially enticing in the evening under Colorado's typical star-filled skies. One indoor pool does require bathing suits, which is the best pool for a family-friendly dip. There are also private indoor tubs in rooms that shut and lock.
Lodging here includes basic rooms (no televisions) that come with cozy robes for covering up on your trek back and forth to the hot springs. You can also pitch a tent or park your RV (no longer than 30 feet) in a small campground that accommodates up to 24 people.
Mountain Air Ranch
This 150-acre, family nudist resort is just west of Denver and open year-round, but it may seem more appealing to strip down during the warmer summer months. Enjoying the outdoors—plus the ranch's tennis, volleyball and hiking opportunities—might be a lot more, er, comfortable in warm-warmer temperatures.
Lodging is minimal here: one cabin, as well as four lodge rooms, three of which have a shared bathroom.
Mountain Air Ranch also has tent sites and RV hookups. Guests can use a community kitchen (oh yes, in the nude), and the Lost Bikini Grill is open in the summer. Families are accommodated with a kids' toy and game room, outdoor playground and heated outdoor pool. Scheduled activities include bingo nights, karaoke, talent shows and bocce tournaments.
Strawberry Park Hot Springs
These natural hot springs that reach 104 degrees are known for their off-the-grid setting in Steamboat Springs. (Don't expect to be able to plug in a hairdryer in the changing room after your soak.)
During the day, bathing suits are required, but after dark when lighting is minimal in the natural environment, you are welcome to bare all. Children are not allowed after dark.
Basic lodging includes cabins, a covered wagon, and even an old train caboose. There are also campsites available in the summer months.
Important to note: A four-wheel-drive vehicle is required to reach Strawberry Hot Springs in the winter months, with the ice and snow commonly found on the rustic roads. If you don't have a car while vacationing in Steamboat Springs, shuttles companies can transport you. The hot springs are lovely year-round, but they feel especially incredible after a day on the Steamboat slopes.
Dakota Hot Springs
On every day but Tuesday, bathing suits are optional at Dakota Hot Springs, a little more than two hours south of Denver. Unlike some of the other more natural hot springs soaking areas in Colorado (say, that feature river rock walls or pebble floors), Dakota Hot Springs has just one concrete, free-form pool.
A bonus: The pool water, which averages about 95 to 98 degrees, is continually changed by the natural artesian flow of the well source and contains therapeutic salts, soda and calcium. Best of all, the water does not contain any measurable sulfur or iron. There is no stinky, sulfurous odor found in some hot springs throughout the state.
Conundrum Hot Springs
The remote Conundrum Hot Springs can be reached only via an 8.5-mile hike from a trailhead near Aspen. The trek in is a moderate one—never too steep, but it's not a short and easy skip through the woods either. There are three distinct stream crossings you'll have to make. Still, the reward is phenomenal: tent campsites (permit required) around a couple of natural hot springs set at 11,200 feet in elevation, including one that resembles an infinity pool.
The views of craggy peaks and towering pines in the Conundrum Creek valley are stunning. Expect to see other campers clothed during the day, with many folks stripping down to nothing to soak under a star-lit sky once the sun goes down.
This is not an official nudist getaway, and there may be families around (although the trek is too intense for most little ones), so be respectful of people around you and make sure everyone is consensual, lest you end up in an awkward position.
Valley View Hot Springs
Valley View Hot Springs is a unique and remote hot springs about a 3.5-hour drive southwest from Denver. It's part of the nonprofit Orient Land Trust and offers not only numerous soaking options in natural rock ponds along wilderness trails, but also concrete swimming pools.
Lodging includes tent and RV sites, plus private cabins, lodge rooms and co-ed, dorm-like rooms with bunk beds. Clothing is optional throughout the property. It calls it "open air naturism," stating that "nudity is not inherently indecent, suggestive, nor demeaning." Nude is natural, Valley View's website claims. This is a family-friendly destination.
Valley View has 11 pools, six natural pools built over the springs and five concrete basins into which untreated hot springs water is piped. The largest is the swimming pool: 75 feet long, kept at about 88 degrees year round. The hottest pool is a basin where the water heated by a hydroelectric plant; it varies from 104 to 108 degrees.
The springs limits visitation. When it's at capacity, it allows no more visitors. So reservations are highly recommended.
Desert Reef Hot Spring
The pool at Desert Reef Hot Spring in Florence (about 2.5 hours south of Denver), is clothing-optional every day of the week except Friday. It features a large sunning deck and a natural waterfall. Mineral content is mostly calcium, with no offensive sulfur smell.
Kids are welcome at this clothing-optional pool, and stated policy forbids any public displays of affection or any "close body contact" while nude.
Squirrel Creek Lodge
Squirrel Creek Lodge outside of Denver, in Littleton near Chatfield Park, is known as a "lifestyle resort" and is popular among swingers. It also welcomes adult nudists every Saturday and Sunday.
This is a members-only property (with an inexpensive membership fee) and claims to have high standards of etiquette and behavior. Squirrel Creek itself is a stunning property with multiple rooms indoors and an expansive outdoor garden area with different hangout spots, as well as animals that live on the grounds that provide a serene atmosphere.
More Nudist and Naturist Resources in Colorado
Looking for more info on clothing-optional activities, destinations and clubs in Colorado? Check out the Front Range Naturists. This group has a calendar of events for members.
There's also the Colorado Naturists.