March 1, 2020
In the morning we left Bernal and headed to El Geiser, a hot springs waterpark just over an hour’s drive away. On the way there we ran into a large number of Topos or speed bumps which can be up to a foot high. In the US speed bumps are normally found on small residential streets to keep the speed down. In Mexico they have speed bumps on two lane highways. We would happily driving along at 65 miles an hour and suddenly there will be a sign for a topos 400 feet ahead. On smaller single lane in each direction country roads with a speed limit of 50 miles an hour we would come upon topos in the middle of nowhere with no warning signage. Some of the topos would have yellow paint on them, some were completely unmarked and very hard to see. We hit more than a few at higher speeds sending things in the Rover flying. Considering that Rover is made primarily of wood and Styrofoam we don’t like bumps. Topos are also everywhere in Mexican towns, often completely unmarked.
Before we came to Mexico we had been warned many times to avoid driving at night in Mexico. We now see that this is excellent advice, not for safety but because of the random speed bumps. They are often barely visible during bright daylight and would be downright dangerous at night. The narrow streets in many Mexican towns would also be a nightmare in the dark.
We manage to get to El Geiser safety, parked in their large dirt parking lot and hurried to change into our swimsuits and sunscreen. El Geiser is a waterpark fed by a naturally occurring volcanic hot spring that comes out steaming hot from a set of large pipes. The hot mineral water smells faintly of sulfur and is fed to dozens of pools throughout the complex.
We paid our 120 peso per person entrance fee and headed to the nearest pool. There were a lot of people around but it was not overly crowded. The visitors consisted almost all local Mexican families with not a single English word spoken. El Geiser allowed camping on site so there were many tents pitched around the facility even on a Sunday.
There were a lot of pools and the water in them ranged from warm to hot. None of them were deep, with the deepest about 5 feet and most of them less than 3 feet. Several of the pools had small waterslides so it was perfect for kids. Going up the mountain there were a number of large hot tub sized pools for soaking.
The most interesting feature though were the two huge pipes spewing steam and hot mineral water. You could go near the outlet of the pipes and get a natural volcanic thermal steam bath. Holly particularly enjoyed this unique feature. We spent the entire day there enjoying the pools before showing and retiring to Rover. For a better idea of what this place looks like, just look up El Geiser, Mexico on Youtube.