Since the termination of the Boy Scouts lease, this 145-acre property in Poncha Springs has been vacant. In recent years the City Council has become interested in the possibility of utilizing the geothermal source for electrical power generation.
In 2010 the City received a $50,000 grant from the Governor’s Energy Office for a Thermal Gradient Study which included assembling existing geologic and geophysical data, conducting surface geologic mapping, the development of a GIS database and drilling five thermal gradient holes. The purpose of the work, completed in 2011, was to determine if a high thermal gradient anomoly exists at the Poncha Hot Springs deposits. High thermal gradient anomolies were revealed through this testing. These results are indicative of a potentially high temperature reservoir at depth. The complete report can be found here: Poncha Hot Springs Themal Gradient Study
The City Council is currently considering the next phase of testing which consists of magnetotelluric surveying. The objective of this testing would be to determine, based on the resistivity imaging and companion temperature data, source areas that appear suitable and appropriate for commercial geothermal electrical power exploitation. In addition, this testing would provide information that will assist in identifying the source of thermal waters associated with existing locally commercially or culturally significant hydrological features that need to be preserved. The Council will consider entering into an agreement with Mt. Princeton Geothermal, LLC for the magnetotelluric testing during their meeting on December 6th.