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“Best cross-country skiing ever!”

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National Forest Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 5, 2012

This is the second year in a row that we've gone to National Forest Lodge. The cabins are basic, but comfortable. All meals are included and they are fantastic - good variety and quantity. Just what you want after a day of skiing the best trails that I've ever skied.
The conditions both years were great, with well groomed trails for all abilities. Andy, the owner and host, knows everyone's name and makes sure your visit goes well. Saturday nights always include live entertainment. (No alcohol is served, but you can bring your own, and most guests do.) I'm planning another trip there next year!

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Craig F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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88 - 94 of 97 reviews

Reviewed February 27, 2012

We won a trip to NFL and weren't sure what to expect. It isn't the type of place we would normally pick (food and entertainment included, group meals) but we were pleasantly surprised.

We checked in and Andy was very welcoming and friendly. He gave us a quick intro to the resort and pointed us to our cabin. We were in #12 which is a cute little cabin in the trees. It has two "rooms" - the front part with a table and chair and the back part with a bed and couch. The cabin was toasty warm and comfortable. The bathrooms and showers are a very quick minute or two walk from the cabin and were clean and warm.

The lodge is a great place to relax by the fire, play cards or other games and eat meals. There were vegetarian options available, although you should bring meals if you have food allergies or restrictions. There is a fridge and microwave for guest use. Breakfast was great, we didn't eat lunch at the resort and dinner was okay (but in all fairness, we tend to be picky eaters - everyone else seemed to love the food). The live music was great!

The snowshoeing trails are across the street from the resort and were so pretty and peaceful. It felt like we were the only people for miles around.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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Thank jennyk213
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 8, 2012

Love this place...we are making it a yearly event! This was our second winter there. This time we had several friends come up. Skiing, broomball, hot-tub, sauna, beers, laughs, fire and screams from the polar plunge. We think Andy is pretty much the best host! Love the local music, Gerry is a great cook and provides a little something for everyone. Skiing here is truly amazIng, single track and it is a winter wonderland. We are excited for 2013 NFL weekend.

MIchelle and Joel

Room Tip: Cabin 8 is log cabin and very charming. Bonus is that it has a great view of the lake.
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Michelle W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 10, 2012

First visit to the National Forest Lodge. The host did everything possible to make the sparse snow skiable ! The food was great, the company was good and all enjoyed the live music. Can't wait til we have a real winter up here : )

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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Thank Cassie W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 9, 2011

We've been coming to NFL on and off for almost 30 years and recently have been going up twice a year. Andy and Lura, the new owners, are taking loving care with this marvelous old gem. They are great hosts, and the food is wonderful. Andy has started bringing in live music to the lodge on some weekends...fun local bands from Duluth and the deep woods all over the Arrowhead. And the skiing! 20+ miles of impeccably groomed trails, for all skill levels. The trails wind through virgin pines, across streams (with bridges of course!), through primeval spruce forest...on and on they go. It is a wonderful, relaxing experience and you can top it off with a sauna and (if you wish) a lake plunge at the end of the day...or a sedate soak in the hot tub.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank BachataGuy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 2, 2011

Supremely beautiful setting. Funky cabins are plenty warm and comfortable. The food is all provided and was great! The skiing is all single track classic. The best! Andy the owner is a hoot. This is a place for those that want meet other skiers and have a great time. The cabins we stayed in were rustic. IE No running water. Bring your own bedding. Showers and toilets in nearby building. Hot tub, sauna and a hole in the ice on the lake to jump into are just fine, add to the ambience!

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled with friends
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Thank rhargesheimer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 2, 2011

The deep fresh snow and freshly groomed trails offered up the forest on a changing canvas as you glide down the trail. The single track trail reminds you of why you took up cross country skiing as it winds through the tall pine forest, and along streams and lake shore. The rustic cabin accomodations were clean and comfortable, and just steps from the trail, the lodge and the hot tub - the perfect accomodations in the north woods. The lodge offered up some tasty, hearty food with new friends to share our wonderful meals. The outdoor hot tub with light snow falling was the perfect end to our wonderful days of skiing at the National Forest Lodge.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank michaeljsweet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about National Forest Lodge

Address: 9905 National Forest Lodge Rd, Isabella, MN 55607-9702
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Minnesota > Isabella
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Isabella
Price Range: $70 - $269 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cozy, warm cabins with a charm all their own are nestled in the towering pines of the forest and provide the perfect place to settle into after a day on the trails! National Forest Lodge offers a unique all-inclusive Winter get-away of great cross country skiing and snowshoeing, hearty food, and friendly hospitality. In the Spring, Summer or Fall, rent out the Log Home or one of our camper cabins. Great fishing, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, biking and more. Roast some weenies and marshmallows over your fire pit or get baked in our lakeside Finnish sauna (firewood provided!). ... more   less 

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