Rustic Luxury: 5 Lodges You Can't Reach By Car

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This past weekend my fiance and I scoured the Western coast of Michigan to find a wedding venue. I have always dreamed of getting married right on Lake Michigan and we wanted the venue to be somewhat close to our hometown in Cincinnati, OH.

We found the perfect venue right on the lake that emanates the “Lake Michigan” vibe. As soon as we pulled up I knew it was “the one!” I called it “rustically luxurious” and realized this description is perfect for the kinds of places I have sought out for retreat locations. The venue is right on the beach tucked into the dune grasses. It is a beautiful setting yet casual event venue with a huge wooden deck overlooking the lake.

While I love being in nature, I also love nice things like showers, a warm bed and hot coffee in the morning.

That’s why I LOVE hike in lodges!

Hike in lodges are lodges you can only reach on foot (our wedding venue is NOT a hike in lodge by the way…) and there are 5 in the United States. They have warm beds, some have showers and they all have hot coffee. I have visited 4 of them.

I have visited The Hike Inn in Northern, GA near the beginning of the Appalachian Trail, Mt Leconte in The Smokey Mountains, Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the Grand Canyon and Charit Creek Lodge in Tennessee. The distance of the hikes to the lodges vary with Charit Creek Lodge being the shortest 1-mile. The hike to The Hike Inn is a moderate 5 miles and the hike up to Mt Leconte is a bit more challenging varying between 6 and 8 miles with a more significant elevation gain depending on the trail you take. The most difficult of the four is the hike of about 10 miles to Phantom Ranch. They are all beautiful in their own way and I highly recommend making it a goal to visit all of them.

The fifth hike inn I have yet to visit are the backcountry huts in Mt Ranier. Similar to the other hike in lodges it is not easy to get reservations at these huts. You need to make reservations a year or two in advance at these adventure spots.

Lucky for you I am leading trips to two of the five hike in lodges next year because I love taking you off the beaten path!

The “Journey To The Unlimited Self” Grand Canyon Rim To Rim Hike + Sedona Excursion is August 6th-12th and The “Be Fierce & Flourish” Mt Leconte Climb is June 13th-16th.

Are you up for the adventure this year?

Much Love,

Heather Poast