The rich history of Manitou Springs is forever linked with the springs around which it was founded.
Manitou SpringsThe source of these famous waters lies deep underground in a system of cavernous aquifers. As the ancient water erodes the surrounding limestone, carbonic acid is created, which gives Manitou's springs their special effervescence. This natural carbonation forces the water back to the surface through cracks in the rocks, where it absorbs high concentrations of sodium bicarbonate (soda) and other healthy minerals.
Considering the picturesque location of the springs in a forested box canyon at the base of Pikes Peak, it is no wonder the Native Americans considered the location sacred. The eruption of bubbles in the mineral water was considered the breath of the Great Spirit, and offerings of beads and fetishes were left in gratitude. The soothing effects of the soda water on sour stomachs and dry skin attracted not only the Mountain Utes, who wintered here each year, but the Cheyenne, Arapahoe, and other Plains tribes. All were free to share in the gifts of the waters without the worry of conflict.
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