I booked this cabin after calling one of the local Chambers of commerce and being told that I was booking so late that I probably wouldn't find a place to stay. I was given the names of Wapiti woods and 2 other places that were in the area but were booked. When doing an internet search only those 3 came up so I assumed they were the only ones in the area (untrue but the others are just poorly advertised).
I emailed my request and rec'd a response a few days later. I had several questions and the owner, Steve, was great at getting back to me and addressed all of my concerns. What I didn't realize was that there were some things that I should have been aware of that I was never made aware of prior to staying. If I had been told about these things, I doubt that I would have stayed there. I will set it up in a pros/cons format just because that makes for an easier read in my opinion.
PROS- *The location is great, Only a short drive to the Elk Visitor's Center and multiple viewing areas.
*The cabins are beautiful. Exactly as shown on the photo with just about everything (except towels, wash cloths) provided (and toiletries of course)
*Our cabin was immaculately clean. This is an accomplishment in itself considering they are in the woods. Honestly it looks like they are brand new. They are well maintained and Steve has gone so far as to provide with a good amount of startup firewood, kindling, things you will need if you grill, use the firering etc
*Everything is clearly spelled out for you as far as what is expected upon your checkout etc
*He gives multiple phone numbers that you can access from the landline in the shanty in case of emergency (when the site says NO CELL PHONE SERVICE- believe it. Not for many many miles. ) Wifi is advertised as being available in the shanty but we DID NOT HAVE WIFI. (more on that later)
*If you get bored, the shanty has a huge collection of videos/dvds to watch IN THE SHANTY. There is no tv in any of the cabins (as mentioned on the site)
*Steve has even gone so far as to provide multiple covered wagons to get your belongings from the parking lot to your cabin. You can not park by your cabin (more on that under 'cons')
*The website is thorough. Please read everything under each of the little drop down bars. I did not and was quite surprised when I did so the day before traveling to find out that parking was not close to the cabin. (my fault for not reading)
*The surrounding area is beautiful and there is a stream right behind the cabins
*Steve was very helpful in answering all questions
CONS-*I found out after reading tripadvisor the day before we left that there is currently construction very close to the cabins. (within a few yards depending upon the cabin you have). We inquired about this after reading it on TA and Steve said that there is currently construction beginning at 7am and that is true. We were in cabin 5 and 4 new cabins are being built only a few yards from where we were staying. Very early in the morning (it was probably closer to 8am than 7am), we heard lots of hammering and circular saws etc. But, there is never a perfect time for construction. The 4 new cabins were under roof so I'm not sure how long that will be going on but as of Oct 18, it was pretty loud in the early morning.
* TAKE A BRIGHT FLASHLIGHT. We had a lantern and a flashlight and it was not enough. The path to the cabins are very very dimly lit. The lighting was almost nonexistent. You are in the woods and it is just like going to your campsite in the dark but I mention it so you know to bring a good flashlight (at least). The lights were on from approx. dusk to 11pm or so
*The advertised Wifi did NOT work in the shanty. No biggie but just something to be aware of. IT sounds like it goes out from time to time and when we notified Steve, he said we should just try to reset it, which did not work
*The TV in the shanty is for video/dvd purposes only. There is no cable / tv signal (again, no biggie for us but just to mention it)
*You can not park by your cabin. When I inquired about this the day before we left I was told that there is a map on the website which shows the location of the parking lot and cabins. The lot is about 300-900 feet from the parking lot (it is pretty level and graveled so not a hard walk but just fyi)
*On our last day, we were trying to get in a few last minutes of enjoying the beauty of the area and were coming out the door of the cabin to sit outside. As I walked out, 3 young men came by with a wheelbarrow and trees/plants and stopped directly in front of our cabin and started digging. So much for solitude. This was pretty upsetting considering that not every cabin was rented to my knowledge and Steve certainly could have had the workers digging a little later in the day when most people are out and about OR they could have spaced it a little better as far as when to do the planting. It didn't ruin our vacation to say the least, but it was very intrusive. I felt like there were 5 of us enjoying the last moments of vacation instead of the 2 of us. And the noise made from digging the holes for the trees directly outside of our door (literally 4 feet) was quite disturbing. This was between 8am-8:30am on our last day. I can't imagine what it would have been like if we decided to sleep in on our last day. We did, however, want to enjoy sitting outside a bit before leaving and were unable to do that.
*This is the most upsetting point that I need to make but be aware that upon arrival you will need to sign a BLANK CC slip as if you are making a purchase but there is no dollar amount assigned. My husband went to sign in and get our keys and at that point was told (and I was never aware of this before), that you need to sign a blank credit card slip to be held as your security deposit. He questioned that practice in this day and age with cc fraud and stolen identities etc. He was told that this is the policy and he has to agree to the terms. He did so because if not, we would have lost the full amount of the cost of our stay and I don't think there were openings anywhere else. (Upon taking the credit card you are then told that you need to sign a blank charge form "in case" there is any damage to the unit/items etc. There is no dollar amount, no dates etc.) Reluctantly and after expressing his concern multiple times, my husband signed it but the second that we were able to drive where we got a cell phone signal, we contacted our credit card company and were told this is very poor business. They agreed that signing such a form when there is no dollar limit basically is allowing any amount to be charged, at any time. Upon leaving, we videotaped everything showing that there was no damage done etc. We also asked Steve to please at least date the slip so bogus charges couldn't be added anytime in the future. He did agree to that but I have to say that this was the deal breaker for me. Because of THIS policy alone, I will not return. I totally understand about taking a security deposit but we were never aware of this (other than being told the credit card holds our reservation and security.. I was never told that we would be forced to sign a blank cc charge slip that was not dated and without a dollar amount and without discussing possible charges with us IF they did occur in case of breakage etc).
When we returned home , we immediately called our cc company to alert them of this bizarre, dangerous practice in case any bogus charges showed up.
I know this review is very lengthy but there are lots of little things that one needs to be aware of. The area is beautiful but for now, you will hear the construction going on and be aware of the cc policy. If these don't bother you, then enjoy.