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North Cascades Lodge at Stehekin
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating: 178 reviews
Unique and relaxing
User: zeldasperson from: Honolulu, Hawaii
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Oct, 20, 2018
Travel Date: Sep, 1, 2018
Rating: 5
Stehekin is an experience, and best enjoyed at a relaxed pace. For many, it’s a day trip, and logistically it works well for a morning boat ride up the lake, a short bus tour to Rainbow Falls and a stop at the deservedly-famous Pastry Shop for lunch items or treats to take back on the afternoon boat ride down lake. It is so much better as an overnighter. Two nights were ideal for us. We stayed in one of the Alpine queen rooms above the General Store. Small, clean and comfortable, it suited our needs. No real view from the room, but right down the hall, a common area sun room looked directly out onto the lake, and there were books, puzzles, games, coffee and tea available. There are a few other options for accommodations further up the valley, but we liked staying near the lake, for the many photo opportunities, especially in the golden light of sunrise and sunset. The boat ride uplake on the Lady of the Lake II was very pleasant, and on arrival, rather than trying to rush to join the day-trippers, we were able to take our time, check in and check out our surroundings, and ride the Red Bus for a slow-paced DIY tour of this unique little town. The first afternoon, we got off at Harlequin Bridge where the Fall color was just starting to pop out and the scenery was picture-perfect. We walked to Rainbow Falls and the historic Buckner Orchard where a worker insisted we help ourselves to a couple big, sweet, crisp apples. We stopped in at the old schoolhouse before walking back to the Pastry Shop (closed now) to pick up the last bus of the day, arriving back at the Lodge in time to share an excellent dinner in the Restaurant, the special for the evening, spaghetti and meatballs and a fresh, crisp green salad, finished off with a rich, chocolate lava cake for dessert. For our one full day in Stehekin, we wanted to do the Agnes Gorge hike, so we picked up pre-made sandwiches and treats from the bakery on the way to High Bridge (bus only stops at bakery for about 10 minutes, so you have to be quick or wait 3 hours for the next bus!). We got back to the Lodge with enough time to relax by the lake, and enjoy another excellent dinner (steak with salad, vegetables, and garlic-mashed potatoes). The final day was spent on a leisurely walk along the lake to and from the bakery, stopping to see the Garden on the way. We had plenty of time to sit and enjoy a ham and cheese stuffed croissant (truly stuffed with plenty of ham and cheese), and pick up more treats to take with us on the afternoon boat ride back down lake. I’d say the Red Bus is expensive but an excellent value. I wished that it ran more frequently, but I guess the limited schedule requires you to take your time to really enjoy each destination. You can use a credit card in the General Store to purchase bus tickets, or you can pay cash on the bus. This worked well for us when we took the bus up valley and weren’t sure if we’d want to walk all the way back. The bus drivers were stellar. They offered interesting commentary on the rides and were so helpful and really happy to tell you all about the place and what you should look for, and how to get the most out of your trip. Stehekin, and the North Cascades Lodge, was just an all-around pleasant part of our Cascade Loop trip. There was a hustle-and-bustle at the dock when the boats were in, contrasted with a quiet calm the rest of the day. And everyone — everyone working at the Lodge, the Restaurant, the Pasty Shop, the bus drivers, the PCT hikers, and the year-round residents that would stop to chat when you happened to meet along the road — everyone was so friendly, and apparently so happy with their good fortune to be living and working in such a special place.
Subratings:

Amazing place to be, can't beat the views!
User: adriennemunday from: Bellevue, Washington
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Oct, 2, 2018
Travel Date: Sep, 1, 2018
Rating: 5
Everyone surrounding this vacation was amazingly helpful and helped guide us through our whole trip. Chris at the general store is full of fabulous info and all of the staff are willing to chat and share the experience of living and working there. Don't forget to talk to the PCT hikers either, great stories and an amazing feat of strength and courage to hike that bad a** trail. Only issue is that it takes to long to get there in the off months. Still quiet and beautiful beyond my dreams. Thank you all for a great trip.
Subratings:

Wonderful Outdoor Recreation Retreat
User: SaltyAdvice from:
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Oct, 2, 2018
Travel Date: Sep, 1, 2018
Rating: 5
The North Cascades Lodge at Stehekin is wonderful place with friendly dedicated staff. This was a great lodge with all the comforts of a hotel, and access to the the great outdoors! We had a balcony room with an amazing view of the lake. The staff were very knowledgeable about the area, and it was such a fun community. Definitely check it out!
Subratings:

Beautiful Peaceful Retreat
User: wolferoyronda from: Richland, Washington
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Sep, 19, 2018
Travel Date: Sep, 1, 2018
Rating: 3
Just returned from spending 2 days in Stehekin. We stayed at the Lodge in a second floor room which had an awesome view of the lake. When we checked in we were given a different room than what we had reserved. Although, technically it was an "upgrade" no one informed us prior to our arrival nor offered an explanation upon arrival even though I asked the reason. The room was spacious and clean; the bed very comfortable and we enjoyed the balcony views of the lake. There was no information in the room regarding check out times, hours of operation for dining, area activities, etc. that you would normally expect. There was supposedly a rec room that we searched for several times. We asked about the location twice but never found it. It was obviously not clearly marked. We ate dinner in the lodge our first night. There was only one waitress on duty for the entire dining room. She was obviously running and doing the best she could but we witnessed several tables that waited quite awhile before their order was taken. No one mentioned that the coffee/tea/water was self serve, which is perfectly fine, but it would be nice if people were informed. The food was spendy and we don't mind spending a bit more for an exceptional meal, but it was mediocre at best. All in all we had a wonderful visit to Stehekin but next time we will rent a unit with our own kitchen.
Subratings:

Excellent Find
User: Lovethebluesky from: Pasco, Washington
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Sep, 16, 2018
Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2018
Rating: 5
Our stay was exactly what you would dream of for a remote location - a great lodge with all of the comforts of a a hotel experience. The room was very clean with very comfortable beds. We ate at the restaurant for breakfast and dinner and enjoyed both. It is amazing to be so far away from a city yet enjoying freshly prepared food. After the relaxing dinner, we took a long walk on the paved road and then sat lakeside as we watched the sun disappear behind the mountains. The whole trip was relaxing and a rejuvenating experience before a return to busy schedules.

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