Apache Maid Cabin: Rent a night in peaceful seclusion
The U.S. Forest Service is adding another "Room with a View" to its inventory.
Several years ago the Forest Service made a decision to spruce up some of the historic cabins located on the national forests and rent them to the public.
There are nine in Arizona. Next year there will be 10.
The newest addition is the Apache Maid Cabin, just 12 miles from the interchange of Interstate 17 and Stoneman Lake.
Charles Babbitt, of the Flagstaff Babbitts, and "Biscuit" Bill Dickison of the Sedona Dickisons, built the cabin in 1908. Both families were grazing cattle in the area during the summer.
The cabin was built in a traditional "Ozark" dogtrot style with two separate rooms connected by a covered breezeway. It was made of hand-hewn timbers, with a shake shingle roof, two-inch lathe floorboards and had no windows.
Four years after it was completed, Babbitt and his new partner, Ed Thurston, sold the cabin to the Forest Service. It soon became the Woodlands Ranger Station.
According to Bill Stafford, recreational ranger with the Red Rock District, Forest Service employees originally used the Woodlands Ranger Station as a base of operations during the summer and Beaver Creek Ranger Station during the winter.
In 1917 the Forest service made several improvements including the installation of a ceiling, windows and screening in the breezeway. Further improvements in 1932 enclosed the breezeway, covered the interior walls and replaced the shake shingles with corrugated metal roofing.
After World War II it ceased being used as a Ranger Station and became the residence for seasonal employees working at the Apache Maid fire lookout. It is unclear when the cabin was last used.
The cabin will be rented starting next spring for $75 per day, according to Jeremy Haines with the Coconino National Forest.
The 520-square-foot cabin consists of two bedrooms, a kitchen, an exterior vault toilet, with a propane stove and propane lighting. It has no running water.
The cabin sleeps six, with four bunk beds and two double-size beds. There is also room for two recreational vehicles allowing for a maximum of 10 people to stay at the site.
It also has a propane grill, fire pit, and is equipped with dining room tables and chair, pots pans and dishes.
Apache Maid Cabin is located one mile from the Beaver Creek Wilderness Area and in an area that offers hiking, biking and off-road vehicle travel opportunities. The Forest Service plans to offer it for rent between April 1 and Oct. 31.
Information on Apache Maid Cabin and the Forest Service's "Rooms With a View" program is available on the Coconino National Forest Web site www.fs.fed.us/r3/coconino.
For a complete list of Forest Service cabins available statewide and to make reservations, go to www.fs.fed.us/r3/recreation.The Apache Maid Cabin is reached by exiting Interstate 17 at the Stoneman Lake turn off, traveling east approximately six miles on Stoneman Lake road to its intersection with Forest Road 229 and then turning right and traveling south approximately six miles.