Crab Cooker

General Description: An extremely hot bathtub sized pool in a boggy meadow in the Hot Creek Geothermal Area
General Location: Near Hot Creek Geothermal Area in the Eastern Sierra
Pool Type: Rock and Mortar
Pool Temps: DO NOT SOAK (Above 115° F), Lobster Hot (110° - 115° F)
(Click to enlarge.)
Accessibility: Year-round from a well maintained dirt road and 4 wheel drive is recommended if the road is wet
Restrictions: No camping allowed, however you can camp a few hundred yards to the west
Elevation: 7100 feet.
Distance from road: 0.00 mile.
Map Reference: Benton Range CA-NV USGS 1:100,000 scale quadrangle, or Whitmore Hot Springs CA USGS 7.5 minute quadrangle

The Hot Spring:

  Crab Cooker is another of many hot springs in the Hot Creek Geothermal Area.  The source is up on top of a little hill near the tub surrounded by concrete and with a broken metal gate.  The concrete platform is there because a steam house was built over it in the past.  Be very careful because the source is around 120 degrees F, and the pluming is in there somewhere.  The pluming takes the very hot water to a bathtub sized concrete and mortar soaking tub.  Sometimes the pluming gets clogged making the soaking pool unusable and some wonderful locals come out with special gear to clean the pipes.

  Crab Cooker is fairly well known and therefore you can encounter it in a variety of conditions depending on the previous user.  When everything is working well it offers a good hot soak with nice scenery.  The hot water is controlled by a valve at one end of the tub, and you can drain the pool from a plug on the other end.  To avoid cows lingering around the pool it should be drained when finished.  Any temperature can be achieved because you can close the hot water valve and let the pool cool, but it tends to be a hot soak because the source temperature is very high. 

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Last time I was there there

Last time I was there there were tons of cows. I didnt want to go down there when I got to the end of the road. There were bulls and those guys are HUGE!

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