We had wanted to visit this area as the hikes there are highly rated, and having now been there, I would say for good reason. The area is quite unique in B.C. and although the forest has been hit hard with bug kill, it is still spectacular.
The Cathedral Lakes Lodge and operation are another matter. The visit starts with a one hour drive up a logging road in a dirty, beat up old Suburban. (We were lucky, others get to ride in open air 1960 vintage army trucks) These vehilces could not possibly pass any mechanical inspection and how they transport the public in them without being shut down is beyond me.
When you arrive at the camp you are greeted with a junk strewn yard littered with broken down old vehicles, pumps and other equipment. I have visited mining camps which were better kept.
The main lodge where we stayed was very old and I would best describe it as a fire trap. The Dining Room, Kitchen and Great room were all in reasonable condition when the location is taken into consideration, however, the bedrooms are located upstairs and are old and run down. The walls consist of 1960/70ish dark wood paneling with carpeted floors. Furniture is garage sale quality. The carpet was not in good repair and the bleach stain noted in another review was still there. The bathrooms are shared. As the lodge was not busy when we were there, they were easy to access. They were generally clean but poorly finished. Copper pipes are on the outside of the wall in the showers and the water goes from a normal temperature to full hot or full cold in an instant. I saw only one smoke detector; it was located in the narrow stairwell and it was broken. I have no idea how this building would pass a fire inspection.
On a good note, the staff were friendly. The food was great and plentiful.
Our stay was two nights in duration at a cost of around $1200 for my wife and myself. As a BC resident I am embarrassed that this accomodation is offered in my beautiful Province at such a ridiculous price. For this price you might assume you are getting first class accomodation...not the case here.
Bottom Line: I would recommend the area if you are into hiking, even with the bug kill. As they are the only game in town I would take the questionable transportation up ($100) if you don't feel like hiking a logging road for the first day. Once up top, stay in one of the many campsites and don't throw your money away on this lodge.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Cathedral Lakes Lodge is situated at Quiniscoe Lake, 2000 metres (6800 ft) above sea level in the centre of Cathedral Provincial Park, BC. You are invited to stay in our comfortable lodge or cozy cabins. We provide friendly service; delicious, home-cooked meals; access to incredible hiking and a relaxing hot tub at the end of the day. Nearby hiking trails lead you to alpine meadows awash with wild flowers, fascinating rock formations and striking, 360 degree views of the North Cascade peaks.Pristine lakes teeming with rainbow and cutthroat trout provide excellent fishing. Mountain goats, mule deer, marmots, ptarmigan and many other mammals and birds surround you in this tranquil wilderness. Fair away from city lights, you will marvel at the night sky, shimmering with millions of stars. Be sure to bring comfortable, warm clothing for the outdoors, a water proof jacket, good hiking or walking shoes, a camera and a day pack. ... more less