Lake of the Woods Lookout, Rogue River, Siskiyou National Forest, Oregon: Remote Escape Vacations
The US Forest Service used to rely on a system of remote fire lookout stations to keep them informed in time of conflagrations. As the system streamlined and the lookouts became obsolete, many were dismantled. But the others, well, they make for one hell of a weekend stay. Perched high atop a bluff, the Lake of the Woods station is surrounded on all sides as far as the eye can see by pristine National Forest lands.
The one-room cabin can sleep up to four and is pretty rustic, but there is a propane stove, and heat, along with solar powered lighting. Access via an old logging road will allow you to easily pack in all of the supplies you will need. Besides the numerous outdoor activities available in the surrounding woods, one of the highlights of being so high is the birds-eye view of spectacular lightning storms that blow in most afternoons. Plus the lack of city lights also means spectacular stargazing.
Getting there: Fly into Coos Bay, Oregon and rent a 4wd sports utility (you are on old logging roads) to drive 2.5 hours south down Hwy 101 to the town of Gold Beach. From there head another 1.5 hours into the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest to the lookout.
Rent now: Lake of the Woods