Breitenbush Hot Springs Retreat and Conference Center is a remote forest sanctuary of timeless natural beauty on 154 acres surrounded by national forest. Blessed with abundant hot springs, a glacier-fed river, ancient forest and surrounding mountains, it is a place where you will disconnect from digital distraction and discover a deep personal connection with the natural world and with yourself. Every season brings its gifts and teachings whether you come for a workshop, personal retreat, or just the day.
The hot springs have been a place of gathering, rejuvenation, healing and relaxation for centuries. There are many options for enjoying the hot, soothing mineral waters. A spirit of respect and sanctuary pervades the clothing-optional pools.
There are three natural pools lined with smooth river rocks. One of these is designated as a “silent” pool for quiet, contemplative soaking. It overlooks the river below. The other two allow for conversation. All overlook a meadow and have views of the surrounding mountains.
Aligned in the four cardinal directions, the four Spiral Tubs vary in temperature from very warm to very hot. Adjoining them is a deep cedar tub brimming with cold water for a brisk plunge.
The Steam Sauna is a cedar cabin perched above steaming waters with steam rising through slots in the floor. Outside on the deck is a tub flowing with cold river water for plunging.
Daily Well-Being Programs
Well-being programs are offered daily, and vary from day to day. These may include yoga, dance, singing, meditation, Breitenbush history, a tour of our systems and more. The programs are usually 60 to 90 minutes long and are offered at no additional cost to guests. A daily listing can be found in the lobby of the lodge.
Organic Vegetarian Meals
Bountiful, organic, vegetarian meals are served buffet style three times daily and are included in the lodging cost. Meals are served from 8-9am, 1-2pm and 6-7pm in the lodge dining room. A bell rings throughout the grounds to summon guests to meals. You may request egg-free, dairy-free and gluten-free meals (may contain trace amounts of gluten) when you register.
Massage – Healing Arts
The Healing Arts Team is honored to create a peaceful and safe atmosphere for physical and emotional healing, and deep relaxation. Our licensed massage therapists bring a focused, compassionate awareness to their work. We offer various bodywork modalities and may combine techniques to assist you in your goals.
Reservations can be made any time up to four weeks in advance of your visit by calling our office at 503.854.3320. Massage/bodywork sessions are 90 minutes long and are $110. A credit card is required to reserve an appointment. For sessions canceled less than 24 hours in advance the massage fee is forfeited.
PLEASE NOTE: If you suffer from any health condition or injury requiring the attention of a doctor, you may be required to provide your massage therapist with written clearance from your doctor to receive massage. When in doubt, ask your doctor.
If you get a cold or the flu, please contact the office to cancel your session (massage can make your illness worse)!
Modalities include the following:
Relaxation Massage uses kneading and flowing strokes to increase circulation, detoxify body tissues, relax muscles, relieve pain, and bring peace of mind and a felt sense of well-being.
Deep Tissue Massage is often mistakenly thought to mean hard pressure. Rather, the goal of this modality is to access and release deeper tissues of your body and it incorporates a variety of techniques to accomplish this. Clients are often surprised that deep release can happen with relatively gentle pressure. Please discuss your pressure preference with your therapist at the start of your session and remember to speak up if the pressure is too much.
Myofascial Release is a therapeutic technique focusing on releasing restrictions in the muscular (myo)/connective tissue (fascial) web of your body to restore proper alignment and function. Can be effective in addressing acute or chronic musculo-skeletal compensation patterns due to injury or postural deviation.
Treatment Massage includes brief, specific evaluation of the your condition and the use of various techniques to facilitate change in this condition, which may result in pain relief and/or increased mobility. Therapists who offer this treatment modality have additional training or experience in clinical evaluation. PLEASE NOTE: For injuries or conditions requiring ongoing care of a physician, you may need written clearance from your physician to receive treatment. (When in doubt, ask your doctor.)
Thai Massage is received on a floor mat while dressed in loose comfortable clothing. Therapist uses a combination of passive stretching, focused breathing, and rhythmic compressions. This modality clears blockages in energy flow, and increases flexibility, vitality and body awareness. Effective for all body types and recommended especially for low back and hip issues.
Core/Abdominal is a full body massage with an emphasis on abodominal and pelvic work using Chi Nei Tsang and Ayurvedic principles to release the psoas and facilitate lymph drainage, as well as release physical/emotional blockages of the core/abdomen. Core Work is essential in facilitating lasting release of peripheral issues (i.e. stiffness in neck, shoulders, low back, etc.).
Chi Nei Tsang (CNT) is a form of abdominal massage for improved health that helps with the systems of digestion, reproduction, circulation, and respiration. An average session is one hour of CNT mixed with half an hour of other work.
Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy uses medium to deep compression and long soothing strokes. Oils and lotion are applied to the client’s body, and soft, clean, bare feet give a rhythmic and deep Swedish massage. Parallel bars are overhead, used for the therapist’s balance and control.
Cranio-Sacral is a gentle and effective technique affecting the flow of cerebrospinal fluid to help release deeply held tension & trauma, and assisting your body’s natural ability to heal.
Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing. It is administered by “laying on hands” and is based on the idea that an unseen “life force energy” flows through us and is what causes us to be alive. Effects during and afterwards include peacefulness, comfort, pain relief and calm.
Prenatal massage addresses the special needs of the mother-to-be in the second and third trimesters. It can help increase your breathing capacity, relieve the tensions created by your changing body, reduce fatigue and prepare you for delivery by increasing kinesthetic awareness. Prenatal energy work can also help you to connect with your baby. (NOTE: Please provide your therapist with written release from your doctor, clearing you for massage.)
We often have visiting therapists who may bring additional modalities. The reservations desk will be happy to share these with you when you call.
Miles of trails radiate from Breitenbush into the surrounding forests. Our trails, “The Gorge,” “Spotted Owl,” “Emerald Forest,” “Devils Peak” and “Inner Path” lead through ancient forest cathedrals, past river cascades and on to magnificent mountain vistas.
View and download a PDF of the hiking trails map.
A meditative walk to the center of the labyrinth is a journey to one’s own center, enhanced by the song of the nearby river. The Breitenbush labyrinth, outlined in river rocks, is modeled after the nave at the famous Chartres Cathedral in Chartres, France.
Built around 1930, the historic lodge is the center of activity at Breitenbush. The large decks are favorite places for summer dining. Inside the lodge is the dining room, a large event space, and two libraries for relaxing and reading. The lobby is a popular place for gathering and there you’ll find a board listing the daily well-being programs.
Off-the-Grid & Disconnected
The utilization of our own hydroelectric power from the Breitenbush River and heat from natural springs means your Breitenbush experience is off the grid. There is no cell service, TV or guest Internet – this provides you with an unusual opportunity for digital detox.
The Sanctuary is a lovely space with heated floor and large windows peering into the forest. It is a place to relax, meditate, read, do yoga or engage in a personal practice. It is also the space in which many of the daily well-being programs are held.
The gift shop offers an inspiring selection of books, writing materials and artisan crafted gifts. You’ll also find a selection of necessities that you may have forgotten.
In addition to the occasional sounds of a guitar, drums or the lodge piano, concerts are held on a monthly basis in the north wing of the lodge. These are open to all guests and are free of charge. Generally they are offered by acoustic singer-songwriters but have also included kirtan and even Tuvan throat singers.
Coming April 16th, 2017: The Thormahlens
Dave and Sharon Thormahlen play a combination of original compositions, fun Irish tunes, lively South American tunes and some familiar tunes. They have even been known to sing. All music is performed on a harp, guitar and mandolin built by Dave along with a 1923 tenor banjo. What a great team! Their original tunes are like musical watercolors. Sharon says, “We may not rock but we sure do ROLL!”
Coming August 28th, 2017: Johanna Warren
Johanna Warren crafts powerful songs in unusual time signatures and melancholic open tunings on her acoustic guitar, weaving adept finger-picking with lilting, acrobatic vocal lines and potent poetry drawing from a deep well of mysticism and reverence for life.
In 2015, Rolling Stone Magazine named Johanna “One of Four Singer-Songwriters You Need to Know.” In 2016 she founded Spirit House Records, a radically artist-friendly community of healers, activists, witches and starchildren bringing medicine to the world in the form of art. She released her third LP, “Gemini I” on Spirit House last September; its twin, “Gemini II,” is due out this summer.
An intuitively self-taught guitarist and classically trained flute player, Warren’s writing plumbs the depths of the human experience, alchemizing life’s darkest moments into refined offerings of beauty. Although she has lent her voice to artists such as Iron & Wine, Natalie Merchant, and Jesca Hoop, she is a songwriter first and foremost, paying homage through the cultivation of her craft to her personal saviors Joni Mitchell, Elliott Smith, and Nick Drake.