Chester, CALIF. — To keep attracting families to Drakesbad Guest Ranch in Lassen Volcanic National Park, park concessionaire California Guest Services (CGS) has dropped the cost of a family’s four-night stay by $700.
“Families have been hit particularly hard by the economy in recent years, and that’s resulted in a decline in the number of families that stay at Drakesbad,” said CGS President, John Koeberer, “We looked at why it was happening and concluded, we were pricing families out.”
Because Drakesbad is so far away from the next nearest place to eat (17 miles), meals are included in the cost of each guest’s accommodations, which are charged on a per-person basis per room. That meant additional expense for cost-conscious families. Koeberer explained, “We didn’t want to lose the family character of Drakesbad. So, we decided not to charge for kids. Now, with each paying adult, one child can stay free in the same room, including their meals and new kids’ activities. Additional children in the same room cost $49 a night when under 12 years old and $69 a night when between 13 and 17 years old.”
Drakesbad has been a traditional summer destination for families who return to impart a love of nature and family togetherness to their children. The guest ranch is located in Lassen Volcanic’s remote Warner Valley at the end of a grassy, stream-fed mountain valley within short hikes of such hydrothermal wonders as: fumeroles, bubbling mudpots, steam vents, and a boiling lake.
Part of Drakesbad’s charm is its connection to the past. Children often build hand-crafted waterwheels to place in Warner Creek and leave spinning until winter snows wash them away. Favorite activities include swimming in the ranch’s hot-spring-fed swimming pool, horseback rides, fly-fishing and day hikes. Newly added this summer are weekday crafts, archery, swim time, hiking and star-gazing programs, led by a recreation director.
Because the lodge has only 19 rooms, reserving a room, cabin or bungalow as early as possible is recommended. Accommodations are most easily obtained from mid to late June, or from mid August through early October. Reservations can be made at www.drakesbad.com or by calling 866-999-0914. CGS is an authorized concessioner of the National Park Service.