Ainsworth Hot Springs is located about 40 min drive from a village called Nelson. Nelson will be the last area you’ll see a decent amount of habitants, stores, hotels/motels and restaurants before driving on a road out to nowhere. As any other road in BC, you’ll drive on sharp turns and steep paths until arriving to your destination. There are few camping grounds along the way. However, if you prefer to go directly from your room to the hot springs, the resort does offer accomodation. There’s also a restaurant where you can sip your coffee while enjoying the view of the Kootenay Lake.
After a long drive ending with a sore bottom and wobling legs, you can finally enjoy the hot springs while watching the sun set. Then you can hop immediately to your bed and hit the snooze button. It cost me about 165 CAD (with tax) including the hot spring fee which is 12 CAD (for ages 18-65). Frankly, it was worth the price.
What this place really sales and it is the hidden gem among all the others hot springs in the west of Canada, is their spring cave. Their spring water flows from the Cody Caves which you can only visit in a guided tour. And I can you tell this : the water temperature in this cave is way higher then any other hot springs I ever visited so far (even the Radium Hot springs). So you’ll need to dip yourself a bit more in the ice cool pool right next to it. Your nerves will never feel more alive!
During the night, it is decently lighted with glowing sticks propped on the walls and underwater. But it doesn’t compare to during the day. The slight shine offered by the few rays of sunlight on the rocks and minerals sparkles the cave’s inside belly. Furthermore, the natural light outlines even more the stalactites. It’s a unique sight to be surrounded with.
If you are ever visiting the Kootenay Rockies, don’t miss this place!