The Pond at Warm Springs

WASHINGTON COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY     (Washington County, Utah)

WARM SPRINGS   (aka THE BOILERS)

Washington, Utah

LOCATION

37° 8' 13.5" North Latitude,   113° 30' 49.3" West Longitude
37.1371° North Latitude,   113.5137° West Longitude
2,846 feet MSL

Located at approximately 400 North and 200 West in Washington, Utah.

Area around the Warm Springs


DESCRIPTION

Warm Springs is a pond over and fed by three natural warmsprings. It flows at a pretty consistent 30,000 gallons per hour and a temperature of 72-75 degrees year round. It drains into a ditch that now flows under the I-15 freeway and into network of irrigation ditches.

The pond is currently about 5.5 feet deep, but historically it was reputed to be 9 feet deep at the deep end.

There is also an passage going under the I-15 freeway to provide access for animals.

The site is owned by Washington City, but the water rights are privately owned.

The site has been variously known at Warm Springs, The Boilers, Dixie Springs (not the same as Dixie Hot Springs in Hurricane), and probably other names.


HISTORY

Warm Springs was a source of water from the earliest days of settlement in Washington. It was used for water, for swimming, and sometimes for bathing until indoor plumbing was available.

Starting around 1948, people started dumping their goldfish, frogs, and other unwanted pets in the pond and surrounding areas, upsetting the natural ecology.

In the 1960s, I-15 was built right through the area of the springs over the protests of the local population. After negotiations, the spring and pond were spared, but the freeway cut off direct access to the site. A pipe was run under the freeway to carry the water down to Washington. An animal passage was also installed.

"The Boilers" became a place where people went to drink and use drugs. Dangerous trash littered the area and runoff water from the freeway and city polluted the pond. In 1999, the City declared the site a biohazard and fenced it off from public access.


PHOTOS

Early view of the Boilers
WCHS-01253     Early view of the pond

The pond at Warm Springs
WCHS-01563     The pond on February 27, 2013

Other WCHS photos:
WCHS-01564     The pond at Warm Springs ("The Boilers") looking southwest
WCHS-01565     The pond at Warm Springs ("The Boilers") looking west
WCHS-01566     The pond at Warm Springs ("The Boilers") looking northnortheast
WCHS-01567     The pond at Warm Springs ("The Boilers") looking northnortheast
WCHS-01568     The north end of the animal passage under I-15 at Warm Springs
WCHS-01569     The animal passage under I-15 at Warm Springs
WCHS-01570     The south end of the animal passage under I-15 at Warm Springs
WCHS-01571     The ditch coming out of Warm Springs south of I-15

Other photos on the web:
Children playing at the pond's edge
Children playing at the pond's edge
Children playing in the pond
A gathering of local citizens at the pond's edge
City officials inspecting the pond in 2012
The pond fenced off and posted as Private Property

Videos:
Boiling Springs Ecoseum & Desert Preserve Vision Presentation   (March 12, 2013,   18 minutes)
History of The Boilers and Mill Creek Canyon   (September 3, 2013,   4 minutes)


REFERENCES

Boiling Springs Ecoseum & Desert Preserve Website
The Boiling Springs Ecoseum & Desert Preserve is a Non-Profit entity formed in 2012 to address the ecological concerns of The Boilers and Millcreek Canyon in Washington County, Utah.

Washington City - Celebrating 150 Years - 1857-2007 - "Where Dixie Began
A brochure

Images of Faith: A pictorial history of St. George, Utah
Book by Lynne Clark
Page 236

City officials met on-site at the Washington City Boilers
December 1, 2012

Group has big plans for Boilers, Millcreek Canyon; city council not so sure
Article in StGeorgeUtah.com by Mori Kessler, April 11, 2013

Old swimmin’ hole makes comeback: City turns Boilers into public park
by Cami Cox Jim
St. George News,   January 3, 2015

Washington City officials begin work on new park at historic watering hole
by Zach Whitney
Fox 13 News,   January 5, 2015

OPINION: There's more to The Boilers story than we are being told
by Dallas Hyland
The Independent,   January 11, 2015

Boiling Springs Ecoseum project goes before city once more; STGnews Videocast

Washington City Council to decide the fate of historic "boiling springs"
by Melissa Anderson, KCSG.com Televsionm,   June 8, 2015

'Boilers' plan up for vote
by David DeMille,   The Spectrum,   June 7, 2015

Washington City Council Holds The Boilers Fate In Their Hands
by Melissa Allison,   National Public Radio,   June 9, 2015