Hit the reset button with day (or overnight) trip to Norris
by Kathleen Rauch
As summer heats up, Norris Hot Springs commits to providing an oasis for the pandemic weary. Visitors come for relaxation, self-care, fine food and to savor this unique Montana experience. Clean, clear artesian spring water burbles up through the mantle of the earth and delivers hot, mineral-rich water at a constant flow rate of 80 gallons a minute for soaking pleasure.
In the heat of summer, Norris’ pool temperature is regulated to a cooler temp around 100º to allow for long, relaxing soaks. A nice grassy area in a tree-shaded enclosure along with covered tables makes for a pleasant setting even on the hottest days. By mid-summer the famous hollyhocks of Norris Hot Springs line the fence and add a touch of colorful, homestead nostalgia.
Norris Hot Springs has found a way to weather the pandemic and to thrive in the midst of limitations and constraints. Rather than raising soaking fees for the public to cover loss of revenue due to a decrease in the pool maximum capacity, Norris Hot Springs has created a dual platform for soakers with both public and private soaking options. Public soaking is available Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10am – 10pm. Admission is free for anyone who wants to come out and hang with family or get something from the restaurant, bar or grill. Soaking costs $8 for adults, $5 for over age 64 and $3 for under age 12. Capacity inside the facility is limited to 50 people by order of the state. A waiting list is used when the 50 limit is reached.
Exclusive, private pool reservations are available Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 8am – 10pm. Private reservations allow for a 2-hour time slot for up to 10 people. Private parties can be booked through the website or schedulicity.com.
Camping continues to be a popular option for those who want a scenic, relaxing getaway just 35 miles west of Bozeman. Nine RV sites and four tent camping sites perch above the Norris Hot Springs garden and wetlands making for fabulous birding and good times. Sites can also be reserved through the website.
The Norris Hot Springs café garden and greenhouse are in full production mode, providing fresh and succulent greens, herbs and vegetables for Chef Abe and the kitchen team to transform into healthy, delicious snacks and meals. Look for the garden grown vegetables on the grill, especially!
Chef Abe fires up the 50-Mile Grill on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 5pm. Local, grass-fed beef burgers fresh off the grill pair well with local craft beers, wine and non-alcoholic beverages served from the No Loose Dogs Saloon.
If you find yourself needing to hit the reset button and have a deep immersion in the best that Montana offers, find your way to Norris Hot Springs. Relaxation awaits.
For more information, visit www.norrishotsprings.com. Follow on Facebook and Instagram (@NorrisHotSprings). •