Flathead National Forest Proposes Fee Increases

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Flathead National Forest Proposes Fee Increases

Postby llholmes1948 » Wed Nov 01, 2017 7:22 am

Link to article in the Flathead Beacon:

http://flatheadbeacon.com/2017/10/31/fl ... increases/
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Re: Flathead National Forest Proposes Fee Increases

Postby joybird » Wed Nov 01, 2017 11:29 am

For myself, I'm sorry to see the price for the lookouts going up. I've enjoyed two-night stays in blissful solitude up at Hornet a couple of times, and doubling the nightly cost from $20 to $40 -- and thus from $40 to $80 for two nights -- for one person is not insignificant for me. It makes it much more of a "splurge" for those of us who rely on inexpensive camping options to make our trips possible.

Still, on the upside, there will probably be fewer incidences of people just walking away from their reservations without bothering to cancel. Freeing the lookout back up for someone else to use would be a good thing. They really are magical places.
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Re: Flathead National Forest Proposes Fee Increases

Postby indiana hiker » Wed Nov 01, 2017 2:20 pm

Joybird,Since you brought up lookouts, I thought I would share my stay in lookouts in 2015. It took a lot of planning, more driving than I normally like on vacation and extra baggage due to taking sleeping bags. Due to the extra baggage we flew into Spokane. From there we headed to Eureka MT and stayed in Webb Mt. lookout ($35). Loved this lookout but we could see wildfires to the north and knew at some point the fires might affect our trip. Headed to Glacier for a few nights (hotel) and then Hornet Lookout ($20). Then south to Big Fork and Mission Lookout ($25). We really didn't like this lookout too much due to it being on a 40 ft tower. We knew this when we booked but wanted something in that area. Then south to Missoula area and West Fork Butte Lookout ($30). The next night we had Cougar Lookout reserved but by then the smoke had really thickened and we decided to pass. I did call and cancel (had cell service at West Fork!), too late for a refund, but wanted to free the night just in case someone else wanted it. I really wanted to stay at Cougar but considering the drive to get to it and the smoke, just didn't think it would be worth it. At West Fork you couldn't see anything but smoke. It took a lot of planning to get all the nights we needed. We did a big circle drive and it was really fun. I think each lookout also charged a $10 reservation fee. I agree with you about the increase. While Webb Mt. was great for $35, would I feel the same for $70? Maybe, but I probably wouldn't do it more than once.
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Re: Flathead National Forest Proposes Fee Increases

Postby tibber » Wed Nov 01, 2017 7:28 pm

indiana hiker wrote:Joybird,Since you brought up lookouts, I thought I would share my stay in lookouts in 2015. It took a lot of planning, more driving than I normally like on vacation and extra baggage due to taking sleeping bags. Due to the extra baggage we flew into Spokane. From there we headed to Eureka MT and stayed in Webb Mt. lookout ($35). Loved this lookout but we could see wildfires to the north and knew at some point the fires might affect our trip. Headed to Glacier for a few nights (hotel) and then Hornet Lookout ($20). Then south to Big Fork and Mission Lookout ($25). We really didn't like this lookout too much due to it being on a 40 ft tower. We knew this when we booked but wanted something in that area. Then south to Missoula area and West Fork Butte Lookout ($30). The next night we had Cougar Lookout reserved but by then the smoke had really thickened and we decided to pass. I did call and cancel (had cell service at West Fork!), too late for a refund, but wanted to free the night just in case someone else wanted it. I really wanted to stay at Cougar but considering the drive to get to it and the smoke, just didn't think it would be worth it. At West Fork you couldn't see anything but smoke. It took a lot of planning to get all the nights we needed. We did a big circle drive and it was really fun. I think each lookout also charged a $10 reservation fee. I agree with you about the increase. While Webb Mt. was great for $35, would I feel the same for $70? Maybe, but I probably wouldn't do it more than once.

wow, that was quite the trek!
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Re: Flathead National Forest Proposes Fee Increases

Postby joybird » Thu Nov 02, 2017 4:53 pm

indiana hiker wrote:Joybird,Since you brought up lookouts, I thought I would share my stay in lookouts in 2015.


Wow. Sounds like it was quite an itinerary! Good for you! 8)

Pictures....please? :wink:
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Re: Flathead National Forest Proposes Fee Increases

Postby indiana hiker » Fri Nov 03, 2017 12:53 pm

Joybird, I would post pictures but I am really not too computer savvy and have NO idea how to even begin. All I do is copy and paste photos when I want to share via email. I guess I should say we flew into Spokane because we could fly Southwest and not have the luggage fees. I am not a camper so this was really a stretch for me. We stayed one night in a lookout and then a hotel the next night. I have my limits! It is something I would like to do again (am really looking at next year) but it is hard to get lookouts, hotels in order. I did have to pay a change fee for one lookout as one of them was not available for the night I wanted. Luckily another one was, so I switched around. Also this forum is the reason I even looked into it. I was not aware you could rent the lookouts till I read it here. This forum is great and I enjoy reading about everyone's adventures.
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