Kids Frog Slide
2 Kids Pools
Food and Beverages Available
2 Hot Tubs
Cardio Room and Spinning Room
This is the most commonly asked question we get, and requires a bit of explanation. The original Native American name for the Hot Springs area was "Minnekahta," which means "warm water." The founding citizens of Hot Springs chose a slightly misleading name in English. The water at Evans Plunge and in Hot Springs is 87 degrees fahrenheit year-round, which means it is slightly cooler than body temperature but also quite warmer than other pools. Many "hot" water springs tend to smell of sulphur, but the water here is crystal clear and scentless, which we think is a huge benefit.
When you first step in the pool, it may seem cooler than expected, but as you continue to swim, your body will adjust and you'll appreciate its warmth like generations before you. Also, the water is warmest on the north end of the pool, near where the largest spring bubbles up.
You will need a swimsuit and a towel. If you do not have a towel, we rent fresh laundered towels for $2.00 each. We do not rent swimsuits but we do sell both swimsuits and towels in our gift shop. You can swim in shorts and t-shirts as long as the shorts are hemmed and do not have strings (such as cutoffs).
We offer life jackets free of charge if you need to use them.
Sorry, no outside food is permitted in the pool area. Food and beverages are available at our front desk area. Further, if you already are traveling with food, we do have greenspace available nearby where you can picnic.
We have quarter operated lockers for your convenience in the men's and women's locker rooms. These are a one-time use machine, meaning everytime you lock them you will need additional quarters.
If you have further questions please call us at 605-745-5165.
For thousands of years, the valley of healing waters (called" Wiwilakahta") by the Lakota Sioux, was prized for the warm spring-fed river. Both the Sioux and Cheyenne claimed possession of this natural river of warm water springs that flows here. Local legend tells of a fierce battle that raged on the east summit above the springs and Fall River (now called Battle Mountain), with the Sioux emerging victorious.
Years later, in 1876, Colonel W.J. Thornby arrived at the present site of Hot Springs and discovered the source of the warm creek. Near the big spring where Evans Plunge was later built, he lopped off the top of a cedar sapling, blazed the trunk, and wrote with lead pencil: "This is my spring. W.J. Thornby."
In 1881 the spring was held by Joe Brimdschmidt. He traded the spring to Joe Petty for a horse valued at thirty-five dollars! Petty then sold the Plunge Springs to Dr. Stewart who filed on the surrounding land. Mineral springs sought as a cure-all...
Finally, Evans Plunge (named after its builder Fred Evans), was built in 1890 over the numerous small, sparkling springs and one mammoth spring of mineral water. Originally, Evans Plunge and the other mineral baths in Hot Springs were sought as a cure-all for a multitude of illnesses.
"They [the springs] were the resort of the Indians long before the white man found his way into the jealously guarded realms of the Black Hills, and were considered by the red man as a panacea for all ills. This water has been found useful in the treatment of chronic diseases of the gastro-intestinal tract, diseases of the liver and biliary passages, and in rheumatism and arthritic joint disturbances, gout, and others." —Mineral Water in the United States by Dr. W.E. Fitch.
The largest spring, at the north end of the pool in the interior of the Plunge, is known as the "Original Indian Spring." Here Native Americans drank and bathed in the spring's warm healing water. Today, numerous areas of warm sparkling springs may be felt as one moves through the crystal clear water towards the original Indian Spring.
A lot has changed in Hot Springs since 1890. No longer promoted as a cure for ills, the water still invites visitors for rejuvenation, refreshment, relaxation and recreation. Purchased by the City of Hot Springs in 2013, Evans Plunge is forging a new name for itself by looking to its past. With each day the City of Hot Springs is working diligently to restore Evans Plunge to the iconic tourist destination it has been for over a century.
So on behalf of the City of Hot Springs, we invite you to come and experience yesterday's healing waters of today's Evans Plunge.