The Life and History of Crane Hot Springs in Oregon

crane hot springs burns orAmidst the sage brush, the area surrounding Crane, Oregon, and Burns, Oregon, was originally home to three natural hot springs. European settlers used the hot springs for laundering their clothes (amongst other things) in the early 1900’s, stringing their garments along the springs so the water and breezy desert air could do double duty on their clothing. In addition to laundry, the springs also proved helpful to local ranchers who dipped pig carcasses in the water to loosen the hides.

By the 1920’s, the therapeutic and relaxing benefits of the hot springs’ waters were put to good use when a local physician teamed up with an entrepreneur to develop a 30×60’ hot spring swimming pool. Pumping nearly 180-degree water into the pool with no source of cold water on the property meant having to wait sometimes days for the water to cool to a usable temperature. This created the need for other usable spaces, and soon a dance hall and restaurant were built, and the “I and C Hot Springs” resort was established.

Around 1930, the dance hall and restaurant were destroyed in a fire and never rebuilt, though some of the remnants of those buildings and part of the concrete pour from the pool still remain on the property today. If you tour the property during your stay at Crystal Crane, you can find pieces of this history garnishing the landscape near the Sage Inn.

Since 1930, a variety of businessmen and entrepreneurs have bought and managed the resort, and the outcome has resulted in the names “Crane Hot Springs” and finally “Crystal Crane Hot Springs.”

In 1997, Dan and Denise Kryger, Crystal Crane’s current owners, purchased the resort and began renovations for this multi-use vacation destination. They built the cedar-enclosed bathhouses, dug out the almost 7-ft hot spring pond, upgraded the RV facilities, renovated the motel and cabins, and completed a variety of other land and accommodation improvements. They are also responsible for sourcing a massage therapist to the property, and enlisting resort-like services such as a towel service.

On almost any given day, when touring around the Crystal Crane property, you will see either Dan or Denise working the land, folding towels, checking in guests, or cleaning the bathhouses. Their work is a labor of love that makes every visit to Crystal Crane something unique, new, and special.