Manitou Springs, Colorado
From the deep fissures of the Ute Pass Fault, where the rainwater and snow melt of Pikes Peak meet and become heated and mineralized in the deep limestone caverns where they take thousands of years to make their way to the surface absorbing numerous minerals and nutrients as well as natural carbonation. Stratton Spring was a drilled source by the Stratton Foundation as a service to the town where they felt it was located along earlier Native American trails. The Mountain Ute would come through this pass alongside many other tribes to pay homage and become treated by the magical waters they believe were blessed by the great Spirit Manitou. In the late 1880’s, developers and Westerners pushed the tribes out of the valley and began to commercialize on the healing waters with spas, bath houses, and other commercial ventures such as bottling water companies. This spring, one of 10 within Manitou Springs, was believed to have healing properties to treat TB and other illnesses. This spring flows two gallons a minute of naturally carbonated soda type spring water. The well was drilled to a depth of 167 feet. This Spring being drilled, has little folklore to it besides it more modern healing attributes. It was drilled by Winfield Scott Stratton, a local carpenter and building contractor who lived in the area after trying his hand at prospecting during the Cripple Creek Gold Strike which led him to become the first millionaire from that Gold Rush. He died in 1902 and willed his fortune to take care of the county’s elderly and needy children through the Myron STratton Foundation. The Spring was restored by 1989 through an EL POMAR Foundation grant as well as various volunteers and donors from the region.