California hot springs closed ‘indefinitely’ after 2nd death

California hot springs closed ‘indefinitely’ after 2nd death

The U.S. Forest Service has announced that Miracle Hot Springs along California’s Kern River will be closed “indefinitely” after a second death in less than two years.

A body was found in one of the hot spring’s tubs on Saturday, Feb. 17, the Forest Service said in a news release. Another body was discovered on Oct. 17, 2022, in the same area.

No information about the victims was released, including the causes of death. The hot springs are located at an elevation of 2,300 ft. in Sequoia National Forest, southwest of Lake Isabella and roughly 40 miles northeast of Bakersfield.

Officials dismantled the tubs after the 2022 fatality, but they were eventually rebuilt without official approval. “Public safety is of utmost importance to Forest Service officials. With a second death that can be attributed in part to the hot springs, the area will remain closed until a sustainable long-term solution is reached,” said USFS District Ranger Al Watson in a statement.

A non-profit,, says the tubs contain at least six mineral compounds that aid in “healing our mind and bodies” and is lobbying to keep them open.

The group’s stated mission is “to restore and steward the historical and healing Miracle Hot Springs. Connecting our community through inspiring experiences in nature that improve livability, health, and wellbeing.”

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