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September 02, 2009

Yosemite's Evergreen Lodge Takes 25% Off

Cabins at the Evergreen Lodge.

by Brook Wilkinson

What with the Obama family's visits and Ken Burns's upcoming documentary, the national parks have certainly had their 15 minutes this summer. I think it's safe to say that most everyone in the country agrees with Burns that the parks truly are one of our country's best ideas--a point that's worth remembering at a time when we're divided by issues like health care.

What I'm less enthusiastic about are the accommodation options inside most national parks. That's why I try to stay just outside their boundaries whenever possible. Evergreen Lodge is my top choice for Yosemite--it's just a mile from the Hetch Hetchy entrance station, which takes you into a much quieter section of spectacular wilderness than you'll find down in the valley. And from now until the end of the month, Evergreen is slashing 25% off its weeknight (Sunday-Thursday) rates. That means you can book one of their cabins for as little as $109 per night.

I strongly recommend opting for one of the newer cabins, which were built in 2004 and 2009 and are about 400 square feet, plus a 100-square-foot private deck. The original cabins, which date back as far as the 1920s, are much smaller but still pleasant. There's a fantastic restaurant on the property, a general store where you can buy picnic supplies, an outdoor plaza where people roast marshmallows in the evening, and an activity desk to help you figure out what to do inside or outside the park. Evergreen Lodge is the perfect combination of rustic simplicity and all the creature comforts, and this is a great time of year to be in the park--the kids are back in school so the crowds are gone, and the crisp fall air is invigorating. So if you can afford to play hooky this month, I encourage you to take advantage of this special.

Further reading:
* National Parks Welcome the Obamas
* Our top ten national parks and how to see them
* Responsible Traveler: Making a difference


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