Like a new born baby, my left feet is romantically pampered; pampered by the mild fingerings of the warm spring, while a shoe of ceaseless tickles swallow my right feet as the cold spring flows by.
I am engulfed; engulfed in a halo of ethereal romance. A romance spelt by the letters of a sensual confluence- the confluence of naturally contrasting charges speeding up my blood stream, right from the toes of my feet, up to the strands of hair capping my bald head.
This romance with nature I feel; this lunch with nature is real. Real, not just anywhere, but somewhere; somewhere hidden at the feet of the massive and gorgeous Effon Ridge, robed in lush and verdant forest canopies. This ‘where’ is none other but the enchanting waters of Ikogosi Warm Spring.
Ikogosi is a sleepy town tucked at a unique corner of Ekiti State, south-west Nigeria. The massive Effon Ridge looms above the town, separating it from Ipole-Iloro enclave where the awe-inspiring Arinta Waterfalls reside.
At the warm spring resort, a large swimming pool fed by natural spring waters welcomes visitors. The cool and serene ambience preserved by thick forest canopies gives one a perfect experience. Beneath them lie the main attraction at the resort- warm and cold springs exuding from separate spring points in the quartzite rocks and cruising down naturally-terraced foot slopes of the ridge to form a picturesque confluence beneath a concrete causeway.
Quartzite boulders lie strewn everywhere, constantly laundered by the gentle flows. Fallen tree trunks bridge the spring channels, offering the forest squirrels free passage to all streams.
Beneath a pedestrian causeway the confluence of warm and cold streams lay. It is in this pool I stand and spread my legs; one in the warm part and the other in the cool part.
Geologists have proved the source of the warm spring to be a deep fracture in the basement, and that its source of heat is due to the normal geothermal gradient of the subsurface and not deep-seated mantle plume beneath the area.
White-clad tourist chalets pile up the slopes at a corner. Short pillars of blue and white lead up to the spring points where a protective structure is erected to avoid contamination of the water source. Derelict cages of the resort’s pre-existing zoo queue up in a forest nearby. So good to know the State government is planning to refurbish and repackage the resort and its facilities; so good to know that Ikogosi warm spring shall not only serve as an immediate source of domestic water for the people of Ikogosi town, but shall soon be an irresistible pull for both local and international tourist traffic, down to our country- this beautiful and lovely country, Nigeria.
By Folarin Kolawole