Manitou Springs, CO Pikes Peak, CO

The Mineral Springs - Manitou Springs, CO

(Photos Of Our Mineral Water Tour; Pictures of All Ten Mineral Springs - July 18, 2008)

Ron and I met at The Loop in Manitou Springs for an early dinner to catch up in an in-person meeting. We ate so much food and needed to walk it off, and we decided to walk throughout the historic town of Manitou Springs and visit all of the mineral springs. We taste tested all of them and ranked them below!

The adjacent photo shows the location of all ten mineral springs. Most can be reached with a short walk from the center of town, although driving to Iron Spring (on upper Ruxton Avenue near the Cog Railway) and Ute Chief Spring (far west Manitou Avenue) are reasonable alternatives. In general, the springs taste very much like mineral water with hints of carbonation. Each have nuanced differences in flavor, taste and texture.

Here is our taste test review of the mineral springs:

1st Place: Twin Spring - A tangy, full body mineral water; We found it very refreshing.
2nd Place: Seven Minute - A crisp flavor with a metallic flair; No aftertaste.
3rd Place: Stratton Spring - Very similar to Twin Spring, but with less aftertaste.
4th Place: Ute Chief Spring - Tastes like Sprite without the lemon.
5th Place: Cheyenne Spring - Sweet and pale. Not much pizzazz but sufficient.
6th Place: Shoshone Spring - A trace of sour with a metallic aftertaste.

Note: Among the six above, we thought they were all pretty good. If you are filling up gallons of water, we suggest one of the top five. Try them all and decide which one you like the best. (The springs below either did not make the cut or were not in operation.)

7th Place: Navajo Spring - A hint of sweetness; A little boring. Lack of carbonation made it seem like tap water.
8th Place: Wheeler Spring - The strongest metallic aftertaste; Lacking in flavor of any sort.
9th Place: Iron Spring - The spring was not running and is under restoration efforts. I can tell you from past consumption this one is heavy with iron. It tastes like a liquid nail! (No exaggeration)
10th Place: Soda Spring - Not running and no indicators that it will be restored at all.

Scroll down to view our photos or you can go directly to a particular spring via these links: Twin Spring, Seven Minute, Stratton Spring, Ute Chief Spring, Cheyenne Spring, Shoshone Spring, Navajo Spring, Wheeler Spring, Iron Spring, Soda Spring


Twin Spring

(100 Block Of Ruxton Avenue)

From Manitou Avenue, just walk up Ruxton Avenue two blocks and Twin Springs is on the left. The water usually flows fairly hard at Twin Springs. Twin Spring
A sign about Twin Spring and a shot of Ron filling up a plastic bottle. Twin Spring Twin Spring
Adjacent photos from 2002

LEFT: Mark O'Shea was getting a drink at the spring when I visited, and good heavens, he was drinking by using his hand. Nice soggy beard, Mark! :p)

RIGHT: Maybe I should not have joked about Mark, because as I was drinking I spilled some water on my sweatpants, and it kind looked like I uhhhhhhh, you know, pee'ed on myself. <:-sO

Mark O'Shea Steve

Seven Minute Spring

(Adjacent to Memorial Park)

Seven Minute Spring There is a beautiful gazebo and ampitheater next to the spring. A large array of colorful flowers grow in nearby gardens. Some have rented out the gazebo to have their wedding here.
Seven Minute Spring Seven Minute Spring Two photos of the contemporary art design of the spring.
Seven Minute Spring
Seven Minute Spring
Two photos of the contemporary art design of the spring.

Stratton Spring

(Directly in front of The Loop Restaurant)

We approached Stratton Spring, only to see a large crowd milling around on the sidewalk. The spring is located directly in front of The Loop, and on many busy summer nights, there is a wait to get a table in the restaurant.
A sculpture of a young girl on the spring. Stratton Spring Stratton Spring
Photo from 2002 - Located at the junction of Manitou Avenue and Ruxton Avenue. Stratton Spring

Ute Chief Spring

(Far west side of town: Manitou Avenue & Serpentine Road)

Ute Chief Spring Ute Chief Spring Ute Chief Spring, with this massive metal sculpture above it, is probably the most attractive among Manitou's mineral springs.
Ute Chief Spring Ute Chief Spring I zoomed-in on the Indian's hair, which shows it is actually made of metal wires. Very creative!

One can also see how large the sculpture is with Ron standing next to it.

Ute Chief Spring I particularly like the large metal bin below. The water was filled to the brim and gave the effect of being at a refreshing pool ... an oasis in the desert!
Ute Chief Spring About the Ute Chief Spring.
Manitou Springs, CO As we enjoyed the mineral spring, there was a man sitting there who (for lack of better words) appeared homeless. He asked us a question about finding work so he could have a few bucks for something or other. He pointed out he camps just a bit in the hills west of the Manitou Springs city limit. As he was speaking two other men walked by, one of which is well-known for camping at night in the hills every year near Rainbow Falls.

Anyway, as all three of the men walked toward their camp, I snapped this photo. ;)

Cheyenne Spring

(Small Park In Front Of Spa Building On Manitou Avenue)

Cheyenne Spring Cheyenne Spring Cheyenne Spring. I love the in-action photo of the water filled up my cup!
Cheyenne Spring More about the Cheyenne Spring.
Cheyenne Spring Ron On the artistic design of the spring is a gruesome faced animal (left). Ron noticed it and did his best imitation of it. Good grief! :p)
Cheyenne Spring Cheyenne Spring Two photos from 2002 - The Cheyenne Spring was recently moved from the circular station house to a more open location just a few yards away.

(Alissa holds mineral water in her hands.)

Shoshone Spring

(Across From The Barker House on Manitou Avenue)

Shoshone Spring Shoshone Spring Shoshone Spring, located across from the Barker House on Manitou Avenue, is the most recent spring to be restored and opened to the public.
Shoshone Spring Ron and I tasted the mineral springs but were more intrigued by the group of belly dancers nearby. I even got a picture with them! :)
Shoshone Spring Shoshone Spring Adjacent photos from April 2008 - Two more photos of Shoshone Spring. You can see more photos here: Shoshone Spring.

Navajo Spring

(Directly Behind Patsy's Candies In Manitou Arcade Area)

Najavo Spring is located in the area of the Manitou Arcade behind Patsy's Candies. Navajo Spring Navajo Spring
This spring flowed water quite slowly. Ron stood there for awhile and showed some frustration in his face. :p) Navajo Spring

Wheeler Spring

(On Park Avenue, next to Post Office)

Wheeler Spring Wheeler Spring We're close to being finished. This is Wheeler Spring!
Wheeler Spring I am not sure what the orange mineral-like residue is, but there is your proof if you want to verify there are minerals in there! :p)
Manitou Mineral Spring Water Steve At this one I took a major drink of mineral water ... and spilled water all over myself when I choked a little on the water. Kind of reminded me of the coffee creamer incident. :(

Soda Spring

(Inside Foyer Of Manitou Spa Building)

Soda Spring is inside the foyer of the Manitou Spa Building. Manitou Spa Building
Inside the foyer, the spring is located in the center area. Since its major restoration in the past two years, Soda Spring has not been open. There were no signs anywhere indicating if and when it might open again. Soda Spring Soda Spring
Adjacent are two older photos from 2002. The Manitou Spa Building was condemned in 1999 and completely closed off to the public. In the right photo, things were so bad that Soda Spring flowed through the building and spilled outside.

Only in the past year has the building opened up again (backed by major investment money) into a very attractive building with high-end residential lofts above with shops and restaurants below.

Manitou Spa Building Manitou Spa Building

Iron Spring Geyser

(Upper Ruxton Avenue Near Cog Railway)

Iron Spring Iron Spring was sadly closed. It appears as though it is being worked on.
Iron Spring
Iron Spring
Information about the Iron Spring ... which actually is called the Iron Spring Geyser. Yes, at one time water shot up into the air from the ground similar to Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park.

BOTTOM PHOTO - I do not know too much about minerals, but look at the high amount of iron in this spring!

Photos from 2002 - There really is a great amount of iron in this spring, and in fact, my best description of the water is its like drinking a liquified nail. It is that strong in iron! The photo may not show it, but we noticed a slight gold hue in the water. I have been told the Iron Spring's water is very good to drink for those with iron deficiencies, but it is safe to say this spring will test how tolerant one's taste buds are!

As you can see in the photo, Alissa was really grossed out by the water. Poor girl! :(