A cabin in the woods. Your own private woods with a path leading to a cedar hot tub. Gas bbq. Private seasonal stream. No lurking landlords. What more do you want?
The best thing about this place is the privacy. Its really like having your own private campgrounds and you get to live in the ranger station. The gorge is famous for its wildflowers and wildlife. The ten acres are just enough to attract a variety of species. We feed the deer pretty regularly and the place makes a popular sanctuary during hunting season. (18 at once is our record so far) We also get visits from wild turkey, rabbits and squirrels. This month, a family of owls seem to like us. At various time during the spring the meadows on the property are awash with wildflowers.
Some folks enjoy bringing tents and camping on our land. We have built a fire ring about 150 feet from the house and have some comfy padded all-weather chairs that make marshmallow roasting oh-so-easy. We just ask that you are mindful of the locations of the water buckets, hose and adjacent water trough so that you can put your fire out completely once you are done enjoying it. It is a still a forest after all.
Being miles from town really makes a difference for stargazing. On a truly clear winter night, the Milky Way will sometimes let you see her with the naked eye. The first time I experienced this, I knew I had to have a hot tub out here.
The tub isn't a plastic Home Depot model. It's a six foot wide, four foot high, 850 gallon tank crafted out of Canadian cedar. It seat 8 people comfortably! It's a little bit of a hike through the trees from the back of the cabin, but once you get there, it's nothing short of magical. A view of Mount Hood by day and stargazing in total bathwater comfort by night. Sometimes if I know I'll be hosting friends, I seed the area with corn beforehand. There's nothing quite like gazing out through the steam and seeing deer making their way towards you from the forest.
There is no TV set up here. But for those who have that media itch, bring your laptop and stream Netflix movies. There's a great 70's Pioneer component stereo and Bose speakers that will plug into you phone or laptop.
Of course, one can leave the compound. The Gorge is all around. Lyle is home to several choice wineries. Cor Cellars is one of my favorites. World class windsurfing begins at Doug's Beach, just east of the Lyle city limits. The nearby Klickitat river is a world class sportfishing destination. Wildflower hikes and mountain bike rides along the many trails are other popular recreation options. And, of course, White Salmon and Hood River have great wine-and-dine options. The wood oven pizzas at Solstice in Bingen are great. Everybody's Brewing in White Salmon is another good foodie place.
Hot Tub, Fire Ring, Ten Acres of Private Woods, Entire House.
We won't be there. You'll have the whole property to yourself.
The Quiet. The Sunsets. The Deer that come out of the forest to say hi.
As featured in USA TODAY and recommended by Travel + Leisure in its annual Villa Guide:
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