Both those who love the winter cold and those who seek to escape it can agree that a warm, cozy cabin on a chilly January night is a wonderful thing. To celebrate the season, state parks and camp grounds are having deals and discounts on cabin living to help you enjoy the cold with a little more comfort than the nation's early pioneers.
West Virginia State Parks (tel. 800/Call-WVA; www.wvstateparks.com) have several deals to cabins. A Skiers Cabin Discount at the Bluestone State Park (tel. 304/466-2805; www.bluestonesp.com) has a stay two-nights and get a third night free special that lasts through February 2007. Cabins range from two- to four-bedroom units with full kitchens, linen and housekeeping provided. Ski areas are just a forty minute drive from Bluestone State Park. Ask for the third night free when making your reservation.
Bluestone State Park is a 2,100 acre, heavily forested park with water and fishing activities located in the southern section of the state. Two person cabins start at $82 per weekend night; four bedroom cabins sleeping eight to ten go for $117 per weekend night. Cabin renters can use the indoor facilities of the very nearby Pipestem Resort State Park's (tel. 304/466-1800; www.pipestemresort.com) which include an indoor pool, hot tub and saunas. West Virginia State Parks are also offering a 50 per cent midweek discount off stays of three days or more to Watoga State Park (tel. 304/799-4087; www.watoga.com) through March 2007. With regular rates of $74 for two person cabins, this means of savings of $111 over a three-night period.
Snowmobilers in New York State will be pleased with the recent snowfall: Allegany State Park (tel. 800/456-2267; http://nysparks.state.ny.us) has more than 90 miles of groomed snowmobile tracks, six cross-country ski trails and almost 150 winterized cabins. The park's website even has a Snowmobiler's guide that contains general information about snowmobiling, safety tips and maps. Encompassing over 65,000 acres, Allegany is New York's largest state park. Cabin costs for two people come to $32 to $77 per day or $230 per week depending on time of year and size of cabin.
Devil's Lake State Park (tel. 608/356-8301, www.devilslakewisconsin.com) is in icy cold Baraboo, Wisconsin. Stocked with incredible winter hiking areas and 500 foot cliffs overlooking the surrounding countryside, Devil's Lake State Park is also home to the Ice Age Trail (www.devilslakewisconsin.com/iceage/index.html), one of just eight national scenic trails in the Unites States. The origins of the Ice Age Trail stretch back over 15,000 years when most of North America was one large glacier. Remnants of this large body of ice can best be found in the lakes, streams and rivers of the Midwestern plains, and Devil's Lake itself, which was created by this glacier.
You can reserve cabins in the Baraboo Hills Campground (tel. 800/226-7242; www.baraboohillscampground.com) starting at approximately $84 a night for both weekend and weekday stays. Discounts and promotions include one that allows a fourth night for 50 per cent off and another that gives two nights free after five nights paid. Cabins are small and rustic and constructed in similar fashion to the original log cabins. Winter activities at Devil's Lake State Park include cross-country skiing, steep sledding hills, ice fishing, snow shoeing and ice skating on the park's many lakes.
In addition to excellent central Internet portal directing travelers to individual state park websites, Alabama State Parks (tel. 800/ALA-PARK; www.alapark.com) have several cabin locations scattered about the state. The DeSoto State Park (tel. 256/845-0051; www.alapark.com) in the northeast corner of the state bordering Georgia and Tennessee is known for activities like nature walks to azalea ponds, gushing waterfalls, an old mountain chapel and the views from atop Lookout Mountain. Cabins at the park (tel. 256/845-5380; http://desotostatepark.com/rusticcabin.htm) were built by during the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. Winter rates at these historic cabins -- which all have working fireplaces -- start at $66 and go up to $80 in the summer. Newer log cabins start at $82 per night from December through February and $105 from March through December.
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