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“Wow”

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Cathedral Lakes Lodge
Hell, Norway
Level 4 Contributor
18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Wow”
Reviewed October 15, 2013

Cathedral Lakes Provincial Park is an amazing place. The hiking is absolutely incredible. The campsites and the Lodge are at about 6800 feet, with hikeable peaks at about 8600. This is why to come at all. (That said, if you have mobility issues, the views from the Lodge are stunning.)
We've camped here, taking advantage of the truck transport up, for which we gladly paid, booking in advance. (It is possible to hike up, but it's a very long day.) But that was in summer. Staying at the Lodge is PERFECT for winter. This is not to say that you couldn't just camp in winter--you could. But be very well prepared as it can get quite cold.
This is also not to say we wouldn't stay in the Lodge in the summer! The comfort and camaraderie make it an excellent choice. Yes, you wouldn't be completely roughing it, but you could still go on a number of challenging hikes. Plus, if the weather were inclement, there is the option of some cozy time indoors. They have a wonderful fireplace, lots of couch space, a piano, books, and board games.
The rooms are clean and most have excellent views. The food is delicious and plentiful. Staff are friendly, respectful, and, hey, interesting! The showers were hot (a little modulating of the taps was not a hardship) and the hot tub is ingenuous.
I'd be surprised if we don't go again. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Ihatescreennames88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 14, 2013

We were one of four couples who braved the elements for a most rewarding weekend at Cathedral Lakes. It was our third time - we have both camped in the Park and stayed at the Lodge before and we will be back again.
Make no mistake - this is a remote area for people who want to hike some challenging terrain and reap the rewards. The road in is much steeper and rougher than a logging road and this weekend was ice and snow-covered through the upper section. Four-wheel drive vehicles are a must - we were in a seat-belt equipped Suburban, the fare up and back included in the room rate. We could have camped as some did this weekend (it was minus 8 degrees Celsius in the mornings) but preferred to sleep in a comfortable king-sized bed in a warm room with a view of Lake Quiniscoe. For us, this was its own reward after a five-hour hike, a great Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings, a shower and a soak in the woodstove-heated hot tub.
The forest brings its challenges - the older spruce trees have succumbed to spruce beetle and the Lodge and Park management have worked to reduce fire risk and danger of falling timber by cutting back the dead standing trees from areas close to human activity, including around the Lodge. Electricity must be generated with fuel brought up the mountain, so full lighting is only available through limited hours with battery power only outside these times, so a good headlight is needed for reading in bed, but (yes!) there is free satellite wifi by day!
The food was good - two cooked meals daily (with vegetarian options for two of our group) and make-your-own sandwiches for lunch. The fresh-picked Keremeos apples were a delight, with home-made cookies and tea to go if you bring up a thermos.
We could have tried our hand at fishing from one of the Lodge's canoes - perhaps next time. We could also have sung or played the piano with fellow guests in the evening, but the fresh air made us sleepy.

Room Tip: Most of the rooms have a Lake view - the windows are not large, to keep in warmth - but the end room...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Ovwing
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Castlegar, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed October 11, 2013

We had wanted to visit this area as the hikes there are highly rated, and having now been there, I would say for good reason. The area is quite unique in B.C. and although the forest has been hit hard with bug kill, it is still spectacular.
The Cathedral Lakes Lodge and operation are another matter. The visit starts with a one hour drive up a logging road in a dirty, beat up old Suburban. (We were lucky, others get to ride in open air 1960 vintage army trucks) These vehilces could not possibly pass any mechanical inspection and how they transport the public in them without being shut down is beyond me.

When you arrive at the camp you are greeted with a junk strewn yard littered with broken down old vehicles, pumps and other equipment. I have visited mining camps which were better kept.
The main lodge where we stayed was very old and I would best describe it as a fire trap. The Dining Room, Kitchen and Great room were all in reasonable condition when the location is taken into consideration, however, the bedrooms are located upstairs and are old and run down. The walls consist of 1960/70ish dark wood paneling with carpeted floors. Furniture is garage sale quality. The carpet was not in good repair and the bleach stain noted in another review was still there. The bathrooms are shared. As the lodge was not busy when we were there, they were easy to access. They were generally clean but poorly finished. Copper pipes are on the outside of the wall in the showers and the water goes from a normal temperature to full hot or full cold in an instant. I saw only one smoke detector; it was located in the narrow stairwell and it was broken. I have no idea how this building would pass a fire inspection.
On a good note, the staff were friendly. The food was great and plentiful.
Our stay was two nights in duration at a cost of around $1200 for my wife and myself. As a BC resident I am embarrassed that this accomodation is offered in my beautiful Province at such a ridiculous price. For this price you might assume you are getting first class accomodation...not the case here.
Bottom Line: I would recommend the area if you are into hiking, even with the bug kill. As they are the only game in town I would take the questionable transportation up ($100) if you don't feel like hiking a logging road for the first day. Once up top, stay in one of the many campsites and don't throw your money away on this lodge.

Room Tip: There are some cabins which you can rent apart from the lodge. You might have better luck there. I...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
4 Thank ErnieR118
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CathedralLakes, Owner at Cathedral Lakes Lodge, responded to this review, October 21, 2013
Thank you for your review and we appreciate your constructive criticism. We are sorry you did not enjoy your stay, and we have noted several of your concerns. However, we would also like to clarify a few of your points.

We provide safe and reliable transportation to and from our lodge and the provincial campground. The vehicles we use are extremely rugged and dependable, and are inspected regularly by a professional mechanic.

We spend several thousand dollars every year on special equipment, labour (this includes the dangerous task of grading the road each season) and provincial permits to operate and maintain our 13 km private road to the lodge. The alternative for accessing the core of Cathedral Provincial Park (2000m) is a 16 km climb along the Lakeview Trail.

Our lodge was built in 1973. We have made several improvements over the years, and as annual revenue permits, we continue to make regular upgrades. This year we installed a new water pump and water treatment system. We also just started using a wood-burning water heater, and with the new system, are in the process of regulating the ideal water pressure and temperature.

With regards to our décor, we are a wilderness lodge. While our rooms and facilities are rustic, they are all very clean, and we make every effort to ensure our guests’ stay is as comfortable as possible. Because we cater to hikers, our carpets and floors do sustain wear and tear. They are vacuum-cleaned daily and steam-cleaned each season.

Our facility has a fire suppression system including a pump ready at all times. We also have working smoke detectors throughout the main building and cabins.

There are many extra expenses associated with operating a wilderness lodge including generators, fuel, road maintenance and water systems. While this cost is reflected in our rates, we strive to offer our guests the best value for their dollar. We are happy to say that many are returning customers, and recommend us to their friends and family.

We are proud to provide a safe, comfortable and authentic alpine experience surrounded by some of the most stunning scenery in the world.

We understand our lodge is not for everyone. For those looking for a more luxurious resort, we suggest Whistler or Banff.

Thank you,

Richard Padmos
Cathedral Lakes Lodge
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, BC
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed September 10, 2013

My air mattress days are in the rear view mirror so it was a real treat to be able to hike the alpine meadows and crags without the 40kg pack, the powdered potatoes, and the bad sleep on rocky ground. My wife and I had a simple cabin with a queen bed, our own bath and a basic kitchen. Everything was clean and well maintained. The staff was great. The excellent cooking of Jordon Padmos deserves special mention. While we were there the main stove broke down, but the kitchen never missed a beat. Win, the souse chef and baker went above and beyond to make special items for my wife, who has dietary problems. Special thanks to our host Richard and the booking agent Glenda for the adjustments we needed to fit our changing travel plans.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank BurlyBuddhist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2013

We spent 3 nights (August 16 - 19) and had the most amazing time. All the staff in this resort are friendly and so very hard working. We love this place and have returned every couple of years since 1977. Jordan is a terrific chef......his German themed dinner was outstanding. Richard is a fabulous owner/host and makes every guest feel very welcome. The location is beautiful and wildlife abundant. Mountain goats, deer and marmots could be viewed at very close range....less than 40 feet from the deck of our cabin. It's not necessary to be a hiker to enjoy this fabulous resort with nature surrounding you.

Room Tip: Cabin # 2 has a queen size bed
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Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
3 Thank johnandjudy2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
seattle
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed July 30, 2013

My husband and I spent the 4th of July (coming from Seattle) at the campground at Cathedral Lakes and on those particular days, we were the only campers there and we loved it. I'd heard about this place way back in 2008 and we finally made it! And we plan to go again...

We totally enjoyed the truck ride up to the Lodge at some 6000 feet, the lakes were beautiful, the hikes incredible (up to Lakeview Mt. with 360 degree views was amazing), the Lodge and ranger staff were super helpful, and next time we'll have dinner at the Lodge! Because there WILL be a next time!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank seattlecaroline
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 16, 2013

My husband and I recently stayed two nights at the lodge and loved the place. The staff were all friendly and helpful, the lodgings decent and the food was great. The scenery and hiking was fantastic. It is well worth the trip for hikers.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Jen_S155019
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Cathedral Lakes Lodge

Property: Cathedral Lakes Lodge
Address: Cathedral Provincial Park, Keremeos, British Columbia, Canada
Location: Canada > British Columbia > Keremeos
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Keremeos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cathedral Lakes Lodge is situated at Quiniscoe Lake, 2000 metres (6800 ft) above sea level in the centre of Cathedral Provincial Park, BC. You are invited to stay in our comfortable lodge or cozy cabins. We provide friendly service; delicious, home-cooked meals; access to incredible hiking and a relaxing hot tub at the end of the day. Nearby hiking trails lead you to alpine meadows awash with wild flowers, fascinating rock formations and striking, 360 degree views of the North Cascade peaks.Pristine lakes teeming with rainbow and cutthroat trout provide excellent fishing. Mountain goats, mule deer, marmots, ptarmigan and many other mammals and birds surround you in this tranquil wilderness. Fair away from city lights, you will marvel at the night sky, shimmering with millions of stars. Be sure to bring comfortable, warm clothing for the outdoors, a water proof jacket, good hiking or walking shoes, a camera and a day pack. ... more   less 

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