Family-owned and operated for the past 60 years, 20-room Surprise Valley Hot Springs sits within a broad agricultural valley that was once traversed by westward-bound wagon trains in the mid-1800s and later settled by California homesteaders.
A region that still hearkens back to its Old West heritage with cattle drives and rodeo days, the wellness resort sits high in the northeastern corner of the state close to the border with Nevada and Oregon. Settle yourself in your room’s outdoor spring-fed hot tub, with clear starry skies and views of the Warner Mountains and Nevada’s Hays Range, and some might say this is paradise found.
Indeed, a roster of satisfied former and repeating guests on Surprise Valley Hot Springs’ current website speak to the resort’s healing powers: “Our first time to this most wonderfully relaxing place… heaven on earth!” notes guest Brenda of Texarkana, Texas.
The property, set on 290 acres atop a mantle of bubbling geothermal springs, was listed for sale on April 18 by Pete Nevin of Reno, Nevada-based Far West R&C Sales. The sales price is $3,875,000 and includes all structures and improvements, plus surface rights to all hot water sources (mineral rights are not included with the sale).
Along with its existing potential as a geothermal hot-springs resort, other suggested uses for the property include as an executive wellness retreat, mineral-water bottling facility or RV park. Located close to the small town of Cedarville as well as nearby historic towns like Eagleville and Fort Bidwell, Surprise Valley is rife for outdoor exploration; the property itself is bordered by BLM land and offers convenient access to outdoor activities including birding, camping, hunting, hiking and fishing (not to mention, in its own eight ponds stocked with bass, bluegill, catfish and mosquito fish).
While not as instantly recognizable as some of California’s other popular tourist regions, Modoc County and its attendant forests, mountains and alpine lakes are home to some of the state’s best-kept outdoor secrets. The steep slopes of the Warner Mountains, rising suddenly from the fertile flats of Surprise Valley, were a favorite subject of legendary outdoor photographer Ansel Adams. Other natural highlights include Modoc National Forest, Devil’s Garden and Lava Beds National Monument. Travelers often pass through the area on the way to Nevada’s Black Rock Desert, home to the annual Burning Man festival, and points south like Lake Tahoe and Yosemite National Park.
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