19 November 2012

"Camper cabins"

For those who want to camp out, but don't want to sleep in a tent, some of Minnesota's state parks offer an enticing compromise, as explained at the StarTribune:
Filling a niche between tents and RVs, the camper cabins typically have bunks, heat and light but not water or a bathroom.

They appeal to people who don't want to pitch a tent and prefer to have a roof over their heads. But because they have neither kitchens nor bathrooms, the camping challenges of building fires, cooking outside and walking outside to a restroom remain part of the experience.

There are now 84 cabins in state parks -- 74 with heat and electricity, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. This year the rental rate was for $45 for the nonelectric cabins and $50 for those with heat and lights...

Some are people who have had their fill of sleeping on the ground. Another group is people new to camping who want to give the cabins a try to see if they like the experience before they buy a lot of gear. "It's a low-risk way to dip your toe into the overnight activities in the state park."
I have read about these for years, but have never had a chance to try one.  The problem is they are so popular that you have to reserve them way ahead of time, which means planning a trip months in advance.  But the price is certainly right.  And the other nice thing is that because they are small and don't have plumbing, they can be built in choice spots in less-frequented parts of parks.


  1. These are very popular in Canada. We traveled in New Brunswick & Nova Scotia last year - and ended up leaving the tent packed in the car whenever we could. Gets you off the ground - gives you some room to stand up & move around - and they are wonderful if it rains.
    Mike Z. WV

    1. Did you have to make the arrangements way far in advance, or could you find places with vacant camper cabins as you drove along?

  2. Way late in adding to this thread...
    We used the K.O.A. version on our Route 66 roadtrip. No reservations needed if you arrive before sunset, or at least that's how it worked for us. The WI-Fi was not very reliable, but we used it mainly for plotting our daily route. Nice, hot showers, and a thick foam mattressto use as a base for sleeping bags. We did tent camp when weather permitted, and stayed in a hotel when we needed to do laundry, but found the camp cabins to be an ideal place to rest our geriatric bones. Clean, private, warm and dry. :)


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