The Truth and Consequences of the Resort Life In New Mexico

Our workamping gigs just keep getting better. We arrived at Riverbend Hot Springs resort in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico two weeks ago, to begin our new assignment that will carry us through mid-May. Workamping Riverbend Hot Springs New Mexico

Like the other workamping arrangements we’ve taken on, we are here because we want to learn more about an industry that we think we want to get into someday.

We’ve always thought about running some kind of resort, something outdoorsy with low key accommodations, like yurts or fancy tents, so Riverbend is right up our alley. There’s only nine funky motel rooms, some RV spots, and a parking lot for dry camping. But you don’t come here for the accommodations, you come here for soaking. The place is lucky enough to be located on top of some riverside hot spring pools, so through the years, the owners have built some lovely outdoor hot spring pools with fantastic views of the surrounding desert.

Soaking and Workamping at Riverbend Hot Springs New Mexico

Soaking with Subversives

Something about hot springs have always attracted hippies, new agers and counterculture hedonists. I guess I’m one, because I’ve always sought them out too.

Riverbend used to be a well-known youth hostel, where dreadlocked trustafarians came to hang out, meet world weary travelers, and soak their patchouli drenched selves. Today, the owner’s thirtysomething-year-old son is making lots of upgrades to appeal to new retirees and baby boomers. It’s working. The place is always busy.

Jim and I work the front desk, keep books, give tours, clean pools, keep grounds spiffy, and assist housekeeping staff (just call us Rosa and Jaime). We are getting a good feel for all of the hard work it takes to run even the smallest resort, to keep customers coming back.

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Hippie Adventure at Riverbend Hot Springs New MexicoWorking for this Man Ain’t So Bad

The days are long but busy, and we are never bored. We work six and a half hours for three days, then get three days off. And so on. And no, we aren’t getting paid. The perks are free use of the springs, free RV accommodations, and most importantly, the reality check of how to run a resort, without having to buy one.

The only drawback is that the resort’s accounting and registration system is run entirely on paper and Post-Its. I’ve never kept books on paper before, so handling front desk transactions is like walking back in time. I’ve worn out a number of pencil erasers.

We’re having a good time, and so far, we are still thinking that we could probably do something like this in the future. We aren’t running away scared anytime soon.
Workamping, Housekeeping at Riverbend Hot Springs Resort New Mexico


13 Responses to “The Truth and Consequences of the Resort Life In New Mexico”

  1. Ooooh ooooh!! I just double checked where you were at, and I totally think we can stop and see you guys!! We have 4 days to get from San Antonio to Phoenix, and I really, really want to see this place. We’ll be passing through the 21-22 April. I’ll email directly when it gets closer. Yay!

  2. These springs are wonderful. Thy have no foul odor or taste. As many of the hippies … uh, patrons here say “The water is simply magical and healing.” We’ll be here ’til mid May.

  3. No, the springs here don’t stink. They have low sulfur content. Some springs are really stinky, like rotten eggs.

    We’ll be here till May 15, then on to Colorado where we’ll stay put at the dude ranch until September. A long time, but we’re going to make some money so it’ll be worth it.

  4. Ahhhh…Rosa and Diego!! Very nice. SOunds like a good time guys. Wish I could be there to try those hot springs! Do they have any smell or aroma? Like in Yelolowstone they have a sulfer smell. Anything like that? How long is this stint going to be? Enjoy! Adios!

  5. We’re all over the fiddlin’ ho-down at the T or C Fiesta! Stay tuned for the movie.

    And don’t be surprised if ya see us comin’ down your road some day. We gotta check out your Big Sky Country … after the snow thaws!

  6. Teckla, Matt and Marsh April 8, 2008 at 6:31 pm Reply

    Hi guys,
    We loved our stay at Riverbend as well as meeting you 3. We think you are doing fantastic work and Jerry is lucky to have chosen such fun parents. Marsh says hello and would love a chase around the picnic table. We are back at home in MT with plenty of snow.
    Cheers and Happy Fiddling Fiesta?

  7. Ooo, hot spring sounds so good right now. After mountain biking today~ I could really use a good soaking in the hot spring.

    Workamping really sounds like fun. We had entertained the idea of running a RV resort too. But, we wanted to do one that is “green,” run on both solar and wind power. Maybe when we are ready to settled down, we will explore that idea again.

    But for now, we are still trying to get rid of the stick house. Hoping to get on the road soon.

    New Mexico is beautiful. I really wish that I could be there and hang out!

  8. james is “diego” in spanish !

  9. I really, really wish we could come and hang out with the three of you for a couple of weeks.


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