Kitson Hot Springs
An abandonded bath house that has now become a bat sanctuary, Kitson Hot Springs is located on Boy Scout Campgrounds.
Type: Natural hot spring on private property.
Driving Instructions: From Eugene, take Highway 58 to Oakridge. Turn onto Kitson Springs County Road and proceed for about a mile. Turn left onto Forest Service Road 23 and follow that along the northeast arm of Cougar Reservoir. At the second right, continue straight 100 ft or so and then bear right at the fork to enter the camp clearing and old bath house location.
Kitson Hot Springs Map
Comments: Kitson Hot Springs were donated to the Boy Scouts in 1977 and during 2000 the decrepit bathhouse structure on the 160 acre property was burnt down in a controlled fire as it was a safety concern. The foundation qucikly became a bat habitat as they were attracted to the cavernous, bunker like structure of the bathhouse.
The new version of the bathhouse attracts hundreds of bats and has been the focus of a clean up and restoration project by the Hood-Willamette Resource Advisory Committee.
The project put steel ‘shutters’ on doors and windows to help protect bats from predators and curious people. It also cleaned up harmful debris, improved riparian habitat and enabled some monitoring of the site.
As for other areas of the camp, it is setup for short term Scout and Webelos overnighters, and den and pack picnics. A program shelter, 11 Adirondack shelters and a latrine are available.
Kitson Hot Springs' Concrete Bathhouse Structure, now home to many bats.
Aerial view of Kitson Hot Springs. (Links to interactive Google Map)
Closer aerial view of Kitson Hot Springs.