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“Fabulous fishing”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Hot Creek

Hot Creek
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: You can relax in the heated springs of this popular fishing spot.
San Diego
Level Contributor
244 reviews
64 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 502 helpful votes
“Fabulous fishing”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 16, 2010

We had never fished before and hired a guide for a day from the Troutfitter in Mammoth to teach us the basics.
Scott took us to Hot Creek and very soon we were reeling in brown and rainbow trout to the dismay of folk who had sat there for hours.
We put it down to beginners' luck but the guide has to take the credit for it, as he certainly knew his stuff; kept changing our files and coaching us on technique.
Even though it was catch-and-release, and all we took home were photos and memories, It was a fabulous experience!

2 Thank 92075
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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106 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Irvine, CA
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Our favorite spot in the Sierra”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 14, 2007

We've been to Hot Creek many times since 1982 and LOVE it. Last time we were able to go in was July 05. Tried to go in in Oct 06 but it had been closed since the summer because of the extreme geologic activity. We were astounded by the level of activity, i.e. the new blowhole and the roiling hot spas (that are cordoned off anyway).

We met people from all over, including Europe, on previous visits and each time we brought new people with us who loved it just as much. The ritual of having to swim through the ice water to sit in the wonderful hot water only 1 1/2 ft. deep was something we treasured and sorely miss! We will be disappointed not to be able to go in again when we visit at the end of May. We keep the faith that it will re-open one day, though.

To all those who have missed this incredible natural wonder, I hope you'll keep checking for when it is open again because it is
so very worth it.

1 Thank sekerjan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Can't swim in Hot Creek as of Sept. 2006”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 3, 2006

Last review about 1 year ago describes swimming in the creek. Due to increased geologic activity the forest service has fenced off the entire area and all swimming in the area is currently banned. They never really recommended it anyway as it could be dangerous and severe burns and even deaths had occurred over the years. I still enjoy visiting such areas and watching the ground and creek bubble and steam, as well as the faint smell of sulfur. It is like a microcosm of Yellowstone, and is geologically related as both are former calderas.

11 Thank cwm1111
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lodi, California
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
“Hot Cold Hot Cold Hot Cold”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 8, 2005

We just returned from 4 days in the Mammoth Lakes area (what a blast!) and did spend a few hours in the Hot Springs. The friend I traveled with had visited this area about 25 years ago and remembered that there used to be a geyser that erupted in the area. Interestingly enough, you can see the old walkways that now overlook...nothing. The area is rather active geothermally so things are constantly changing. We took our 12 year old daughters to the springs and at first they were hesitant about the whole thing. (visions of Dante's Peak dancing in their heads!) Once they were in though it was hard getting them out! The entrance area is COLD snowmelt but once you get across the stream it turns HOT. Its fun to find the perfect spot to soak along with 50 other people and watch peoples reactions when a plume of super heated water boils up. The group reaction is kinda like murmer murmer murmer AHHHH AHHHHH HOT HOT HOT and then everyone shifts around. The center of the creek is a bit deep probably 10-12 feet but if you sink down to the bottom you can hear the rumbling of the earth under you. There are bathrooms for changing but no showers. Thumbs up from the 4 of us!

12 Thank r8drz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Bernardino, CA
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Fantastic lesson in geology as well as a great hot soak”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 8, 2004

This is an awesome place to get a good soak as well as to marvel at the power of nature. We stopped at Hot Creek on our Eastern Sierra trip last week. My wife and I had been to the site five years ago, but it was snowing (in June!) and no one was there, and we didn't know what to expect, so we prudently avoided entering the creek. This time, however, the day was gorgeous and there were about 50 people there, including a youth group on its way back to LA, giving a clear view of where to be and where not to be. On this visit, the upper spring was much hotter. Teens were daring each other to swim over the lower spring, but people kept a healthy distance from the upper. I spent some time at both. The upper spring was great as the river coming in at that point is ice cold (great for alternating hot/cold therapy), but I got near-scalded a couple of times. That sucker is HOT!! A quick dive into the cold stream averted problems. (Hint - wearing a shirt will protect your upper body somewhat from transient plumes of super-hot water.) The lower spring was milder, and there were some nice soaking areas where springs at the bank of the creek came in as well, but the incoming river water had already been heated by the upper spring and wasn't very cold.
Hot Creek has its dangers, but the Forest Service has done a good job fencing off the worst areas, leaving more than enough pool space at both major springs for a couple hundred bathers easily. Not a place to be if you want privacy or clothing-optional (there are many smaller springs in the area for that), but if you want a great hot/cold soak in a breathtakingly beautiful river gorge, this is the place to visit!

10 Thank SCETraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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