Cove Springs: After all these years, the water’s still fine

| Print |  Email
Monday, October 01, 2007

CoveOregonMap.gif

COVE There’s an update going on at the historic Cove Warm Springs Pool, but traditionalists can relax: No drastic changes are planned.

Robert Pratt, the retired college professor who moved to Cove from Spokane after he bought the 25-acre property nearly three years ago, says he decided to postpone plans to develop a small RV park after he got the cost estimate. He did, however, expand the bathrooms in the bathhouse to make them handicapped accessible.

The RV park was Pratt’s most elaborate development plan for what he admits is  kind of a low-key operation. His motto: “We keep it clean, but we don’t have a lot of amenities.”

“I am pushing ahead with heating the dressing rooms this winter,” Pratt says. He’s also putting in showers. “That’s a big step for this place.” Pratt is hoping to attract year-round swimmers to the pool, located in the center of Cove, a city of 680 residents about 15 miles east of La Grande.

The spring’s history is hefty. Indians, and later trappers and mountain men, used the warm springs pool, which bubbles out of the earth at a comfortable 86 degrees.

About 80 years ago, a swimming pool was dug to enclose the springs, which flow directly into the pool’s bottom.

The spring’s high volume and the pool’s unique construction — the warm water that bubbles up at the bottom of the pool and flows out over the top — negates the need for chlorine. “It refreshes itself every 12 hours or so,” says Pratt, who is only the pool’s fourth owner.

Turns out ’07 was a busy season for Pratt, who expects his annual earnings to be around $40,000, money he says goes right back into improvements. Admission to the pool costs $2 for kids from 1 to 6, $4.50 for seniors and older kids, and $6 for adults.

Pratt is seeing a growing stream of hot-springs enthusiasts, bringing all sorts to Cove’s shores. Says Pratt: “They’re enjoyable to talk to.”

JEANIE SENIOR


Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

Reader Input: Rx for Health Care

July/August 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

We asked readers how Obamacare has impacted their business.


Read more...

Photo log: Murray's Pharmacy

The Latest
Friday, July 17, 2015
OBM-Heppner-Kaplan thumbBY JASON KAPLAN

Photographer Jason Kaplan takes a look at Murray's Pharmacy in Heppner.  The family owned business is run by John and Ann Murray, who were featured in our July/August cover story: 10 Innovators in Rural Health Care.


Read more...

Business School

September 2015
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Training, from the mundane to the sublime, bolsters companies and workers in an uncertain world.


Read more...

Wildcards

Guest Blog
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
072815fergusonthumbBY JASON NORRIS

Uncertainty in Greece and China, along with potential interest rate hikes mean investors are looking at the market and nervously questioning where they should be invested.


Read more...

Bendafornia: What’s driving the Northern California migration?

Contributed Blogs
Wednesday, August 05, 2015
bendiforniathumbBY KEN MAES

A huge migration from Northern California has contributed to average 16% growth per year since 1990.


Read more...

Getting What You Pay For

September 2015
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
BY KIM MOORE

A conversation with Chris Maples, president of the Oregon Institute of Technology.


Read more...

Reader Input: Energy Overload

June 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

We asked readers to weigh in on the fossil fuel-green energy equation.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS