Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Lake Crescent Lodge

When traveling in National Parks, I usually prefer camping over indoor accommodations.  But after an extremely rainy night at Rialto Beach, the Lodge at Olympic National Park's Lake Crescent looked mighty inviting.  Availability of an inexpensive room sealed the deal.  Handing the clerk my credit card, I felt a little giddy.  I'd never stayed in a National Park Lodge before!

Lake Crescent Lodge

The original lodge building was constructed in 1916, by Avery and Julia Singer.  Known as "Singer's Tavern" at the time, it was built of locally-milled timber, and featured a large fireplace and on-site restaurant.  Built on a peninsula, it offered commanding views of Lake Crescent and the adjacent mountains.  The first guests arrived by ferry, as the highway had yet to be built.

Lake view from the dock (during a rare moment of sun)

Throughout the years this property changed ownership multiple times, adding more improvements with each new management.  Cabins, a boat dock, and improved hiking trails were among some of the amenities constructed.  The lodge's most notable guest was President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who visited the area in 1937, and stayed in one of the cabins.

View from our room

Following his visit, President Roosevelt signed legislation to create Olympic National Park.  In 1938, the Lake Crescent area became part of this new National Park.  Cabins built shortly after the President's declaration became known as the "Roosevelt Cabins."

Kayaks ready to rent

In 1951, the National Parks Service bought the lodge from it's current owners.  Since then, the property has remained in NPS ownership, and is currently operated by a concessionaire.  The Lake Crescent Lodge is open seasonally, from May until late October.

Lodge view from the dock

Although I would've loved to stay in one of the cute cabins surrounding the lodge grounds, a room inside the lodge itself was the only accommodation available (I don't think a cabin rental was in our budget anyway).  The lodge has 5 historic rooms on it's second floor.  The rooms are simple - just a bed, two chairs, and a sink.  Shared bathrooms (men's and women's) are located down the hall.

Peaceful evening

But Roger and I were lucky - our room had a lakeside view.  And boy, was it fantastic!

Cabins along the lakeshore

After hiking in the rain all afternoon, it was great to relax in heated, indoor accommodations.  The warm showers felt wonderful, and in no time we had all our wet gear strewn across the room and electronics devices charging.

Old weathered stump

Downstairs, the lodge offered a fancy restaurant.  But it was a wee bit expensive for our tastes, so Roger and I opted to order from the bar menu and take our food and drinks into an expansive covered porch boasting killer lake views.  A great place to unwind after trekking in the rain.

Good place to watch the sunset

After dinner, we discovered the rain had let up.  Roger and I both grabbed our cameras, and prowled the lodge grounds, in search of that perfect shot.

Evening light reflected on the lake

As the sun began to slowly sink behind the mountains and clouds, I stationed myself on one of the wooden Adirondack chairs placed at Lake Crescent's rocky shore.

Waiting patiently for sunset

Despite heavy clouds, that night's sunset did not disappoint.  Tiny patches of orange color lit up the sky and reflected in the lake's calm waters.  Magnificent!

Day's final light

With no worries of flooding tents, that night I slept like a baby.  It was so nice to have a break from the elements.  I enjoyed our stay in this cozy lodge, and would do it again in a heartbeat.

As the next morning dawned, Roger and I packed our things and bid goodbye to this charming place.  Time to head back west to the coast and explore the Ozette Triangle.  Read all about it in my next installment.

Sharing with:  Wednesday Around the World.


  1. I was a die hard camper til a few years ago now I do enjoy a cabin , or a lodge occasionally. Glad you tried it and stayed dry ~ great shots !

  2. Linda, the lodge looks like a beautiful place to stay.. I would like a private bathroom though.. The views are just incredible.. Gorgeous views of the mountains and lake. I enjoyed your post and photos..

  3. Sometimes, you just need to treat yourself! You had the perfect spot by the lake for great sunset photos.

  4. Staying in the lodges is expensive...but we do treat ourselves every once and a while. The food can go either way - sometimes reasonable, sometimes expensive...I'll never forgetting ordering just soup at Mt. Rainer...

  5. Another round of gorgeous photos! I especially love the one with the kayaks in it. Their bright colours add such a nice contrast to the surroundings.

    That looks like a really nice lodge, too.

  6. Beautiful area and images. Glad you enjoyed your time there.

  7. Wonderful reward for pressing on in such damp conditions.

  8. Oh my, how quaint and lovely. I am so glad you were able to stay in the lodge. Would love to see any pics of the inside of your room/lodge!

  9. What a beautiful place and those chairs look like the perfect place to relax and take in the view.

  10. Gorgeous - I'd love to stay there.

  11. Hi,Linda. Your photos are very beautiful. I like your last photo very much. Thanks for sharing. Wishing you a wonderful weekend.

  12. Nice photo of you and I loved the stump picture. So, will lodge staying be in your future plans again?

  13. I enjoy camping - but often have a night in some roofed accommodation at the start or (better) the end of a trip. No harm in a bit of luxury!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  14. Gorgeous! I remember going to the lodge one time a long time ago -- we didn't stay the night but I think we ate there. LOVE historic lodges!!!

  15. Yep. That's the way to do it. Get well-rested and dried out from time to time. That stormy sunset is great.

  16. Hi from one Linda to another. I am so glad you found me via Our World Tuesday and are now following me on my Travel Tales Blog. I am returning the compliment and have just enjoyed having a lovely browse here.

  17. What a nice looking lodge and yes you had a great view of the lake. That sunset was quite lovely.

  18. I love exploring the historic lodges in national parks. I've currently got my eye on the one at Oregon Caves (technically a national monument). They're gorgeous! What a lovely place to stay!

  19. Such a gorgeous little lodge. i have stayed in many nationsl park lodges, and always consider it such a treat to know what history you are taking part in. I have been many times to Glaacier national park in montanna, and this lodge really reminds me of the scenery and the lodges there. Lovely, and so glad you got to have this experience.


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