One of the most infuriating things when travelling is encountering accommodations that were misrepresented on their own websites. Why not state exactly what you are and make people happy who arrive with the right expectations instead of disappointing those who expected something quite different? Doesn't make sense from a business perspective, especially in these days of omnipresent online reviews.
The website for Abajo states that each cabin comes with a private bath. What isn't mentioned is that this bath is outside. If you are a child of the city, with a delicate bladder, you might not be excited at the prospect of having to cross a dark, unknown stretch of half-wilderness with who-knows-what-animals in the middle of the night. (See photo: the cabin is on the left and the bath on the right, behind the trees.)
The talk about solar panels used for generating energy makes you think this is a place that is environmentally conscious. However, we strongly assume this place having solar energy is more due to the fact it is so far outside of town that it's off the grid and needs alternative energy. Considering the size of the panels and the warning to turn off the 1 (!) CFL bulb in the cottage whenever not needed, it is pretty clear to me that the cottage's panels mostly supply energy for the owner's residence. The warm water in the bath is provided by a propane tank next to it, and we also had a propane heater, which we used because it got quite chilly at night, though the cottage was well made and nicely insulated.
The mattress was as lumpy as if it were a bunch of hay stuffed into a large bag.
We didn't take a shower, as the bath was just plain filthy. Also, we didn't know if we could trust washing with non-potable water. The water issue was disclosed on the website, and on arrival we were each given two small bottles of water, so we could at least brush our teeth. The tap water must have come from a well, and even though there are environmentally safe ways to remove contamination (coliform bacteria etc.) from well water (e.g. UV treatment), the Abajo owners are apparently not willing to do this for their cabins. Considering that they seem to be off the grid for water too, I wonder if they drilled a better well, treat their own drinking water or simply buy tons and tons of plastic water bottles.
Even though the place was meant to be pet-free, we're not sure if the owner's dogs might go into the cabins, as they roamed around freely and almost attacked us when we arrived.
If you're not into lenghty talks, better not ask the owner for recommendations on where to go and what to see, as he's the chatty type.
All in all, this was just one step up from tent camping, and we were glad we didn't pay more than ~$80. We seriously considered leaving and finding a different place to stay for the night, but every hotel we passed during the day had no vacancy.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- "A refreshing oasis in Utah Canyonlands." Described by Dr. Brian A. Catlos, author Rough Guide Languedoc & Roussilon. Nestled at the base of the Abajo Mountains, enjoy your evening in nature relaxing by a campfire. You may get a visit from our friends the wild turkeys or deer. The cabins are very nice, clean accommodations with a king size bed and two twin beds. Your private restroom has tiled showers and hot running water. Don't forget to order our delicious BBQ rib and chicken dinner, delivered right to your cabin! This just hits the spot after a day of exploring all of the ancient sites in the area! ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Abajo Haven Guest Cabins Blanding, Utah