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Poncha Springs (or simply "Poncha", as the locals call it) is strategically located at the crossroads of U.S. Highways 50 and 285 near the southern end of Chaffee County. From Poncha Springs, you can drive west on U.S. 50 into the mountains and Monarch Ski Area and on to the Continental Divide, only 17 miles away. Or, you can drive north on U.S. 285 to Buena Vista, east on U.S. 50 to Salida, or south on U.S. 285 to Poncha Pass and all points south.
In the 1840's, Kit Carson explored the natural springs called "Poncha Springs", from which the town gets its name. At that time, Ute Indians used the spring. Now the hot water is transported by pipeline to the Salida Hot Springs Aquatic Center.
Poncha Springs was known by many historic figures who stayed in the area, including Jesse James, Ulysses S. Grant, Susan B. Anthony, Alexander Graham Bell, Rudyard Kipling, and Teddy Roosevelt, just to mention a few. In Poncha Springs, you can visit the site where Zebulon Pike and his group spent their Christmas in 1806.
A community of just 300 persons, Poncha Springs is also a progressive business-minded community. Coupled with its neighboring city of Salida, Colorado, it shares the Heart of the Rockies Chamber of Commerce to better ensure the regions healthy economic environment. Towards this end, Poncha Springs is home to the Poncha Springs Industrial Park, making Fourteener Country home to light industry, as well as tourism. There are still a few lots left in the industrial park, for any company that wants to locate in Colorado's Banana Belt and share our quality of life.
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