I think being nostalgic for “the good ol’ days” is a universal thing.
When I was a kid growing up in Kits, our family owned a cabin up in Hollyburn Mountain. We’d go up there weekends, and play endless games of Monopoly and eat canned beans. You could certainly argue that eating cans of beans wasn’t all that, but still… life moves a lot faster now. My work requires me to be pretty much connected to the internet 24/7, so it’s a rare experience for me to be able to go offline.
I think, somewhere out there, is an ideal balance: enough technology to keep us connected, but not so much that we feel enslaved by it.
Forest Echoes Cabins, in Cultus Lake, felt to me like it struck just the right balance. About a 90-minute drive from downtown Vancouver, and with all the amenities of Chilliwack right next door, the cabins are located close to urbanity. But when you’re there, you feel like you’re in the middle of the woods. The main beach of Cultus Lake is a 5 minute drive away: there’s free parking, a gorgeous sandy beach, a roped-off swimming area, and a dock for the kids to jump off of. You can rent boats and stand-up paddle boards there as well.
Owned by Ellie Edmeston and Gary Haggquist, Forest Echoes is a family-run business. Ellie grew up on the property, and the family lives on site in an old, refurbished airplane hangar. Ellie’s mom helps out with the cleaning, and lives just across the creek in her own cabin. Gary is an artist, and has a beautiful studio on the property.
There are three cabins (hand-built by Gary and his dad) on the property, Owl, Swallow and Heron. Each one consists of a main floor with a combined living/dining/kitchen, a full three-piece bathroom, and then an upstairs sleeping loft. Each cabin has its own private backyard area with picnic table, and sleeps a minimum of 5.
This is not glamping. But all the basics are here: you can have a hot shower, there are flush toilets, and a full stove/oven, sink, coffee maker, toaster, and refrigerator with a freezer. Pots, pans, and dishes are all provided. There’s satellite TV, but no wi-fi. Most importantly, it’s clean and well-cared for. It’s a huge step up from camping.
You can bring your own portable BBQ, pick up some corn at a Farm Market along the way, and play cards or board games all night long.
Forest Echoes is the place to go if you want a quiet family getaway, to spend some time unplugged and chilling out by the lake.
Forest Echoes Cabins are open year round. Rates start at $115/night, $90/night in the off-season. Weekly and monthly rates are available. For more information, visit forestechoescabins.com.
Disclaimer: The author received a free night’s stay at Forest Echo Cabins as the guest of the owners.