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Despite no major publicity yet, new summer cabins installed at Manzanita Lake campground in Lassen Volcanic National Park have generated “quite a strong response,” said a spokesman for the company managing the pre-fabricated homes.
Reservations opened last month for the 20 wooden structures available from June through early October. “It’s so new we haven’t done any promotion other than word of mouth and a few articles,” said John Poimiroo, spokesman for California Guest Services.
The rustic cabins – essentially mobile homes – come in three models and include beds, a propane heater and lantern, as well as an outdoor bear-proof box, fire ring and picnic table. They do not contain kitchens or bathrooms (restrooms are located nearby).
Lassen used to have cabins near Manzanita Lake, but they were removed in the ‘70s after the Chaos Crags region was deemed a rockslide hazard zone, said park spokeswoman Karen Haner. The risk was reevaluated and reduced in the early ‘90s.
The park asked for public feedback in 2007 and decided to bring back cabins as a result, she said. The cost of the project – including site work and purchase of the cabins and other equipment – was about $520,000.
“People are looking for this special cabin experience,” Poimiroo said. “We expect them to be very, very popular.”
The one-room cabin ($57 a night) includes a double bed, table and four chairs. The two-room model ($81) includes one double bed, three single bunk-style beds, table and chairs. The bunk cabin ($81) includes eight single beds.
For those who don’t have camping gear or wish to travel light, a “camper package” is available (ranging from $100 to $275, depending on the size of the cabin) that includes sleeping bags, firewood, a cooler, cookstove, pots and utensils, and a S’mores kit, among other items.
The park does not have the infrastructure nor budget to operate the cabins in the winter, said Haner, though the cabins are insulated and have heaters.
More cabins can be added if demand grows.
And speaking of demand, “it’s a great opportunity to book a cabin now” before national publications start spreading the word, Poimiroo said.
-Candace L. Brown has been a magazine and newspaper reporter since 1992. She’s thinking it’s time to dust off the snowshoes for a trek along Lassen’s snowbound thoroughfare.
-Photos courtesy California Guest Services.
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