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Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?

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avatar Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 21, 2016 03:35PM
I searching for some other location I noticed that the Kings Canyon Lodge in Giant Sequoia National Monument burned down last August.

http://www.fresnobee.com/news/local/article31737783.html
http://abc30.com/news/rough-fire-destroys-kings-canyon-lodge/952365/
http://www.visaliatimesdelta.com/story/news/local/2015/08/23/kings-canyon-lodge-destroyed-rough-fire/32246875/
http://www.yourcentralvalley.com/news/kings-canyon-lodge-owner-deals-with-destruction-as-firefighters-continue-to-battle-rough-fire

Anyone ever stayed there or maybe had lunch? I passed by a couple of times, but didn't stop in. The place seemed kind of odd and unwelcoming. Many reviews were that the owners/employees were kind of surly and sometimes downright rude.

Strangely enough their antique gas dispensers seemed to make it through just fine.
avatar Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 21, 2016 04:35PM
The owners have setup a GoFundMe page if you want to donate to their recover efforts:

https://www.gofundme.com/de7c8wsc

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Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
February 09, 2016 10:19AM
Quote
plawrence
The owners have setup a GoFundMe page if you want to donate to their recover efforts:

https://www.gofundme.com/de7c8wsc

.
Not a valid URL
Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 22, 2016 08:56AM
Too bad the fire didn't burn the ugly paint job off of the gas pumps. (Seriously, I'm glad that they survived.)

We decided to give the Lodge some business in 2012. Got gas at the historic pumps and it was probably the big purchase for their day (King's Canyon had just opened to Road's End.) We filled up a full sized truck. The lodge operator seemed a bit on the grumpy side, but his demeanor changed when he found out that we actually wanted to buy gas, not just take photos of the gas pumps. We went into the bar to pay, which had good rustic character...a place I could imagine having a brew.


edit: I looked at one of the news videos and the guy who pumped our gas was the owner of the lodge



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/22/2016 09:01AM by hikerchick395.
avatar Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 22, 2016 11:04AM
Quote
hikerchick395
Too bad the fire didn't burn the ugly paint job off of the gas pumps. (Seriously, I'm glad that they survived.)

We decided to give the Lodge some business in 2012. Got gas at the historic pumps and it was probably the big purchase for their day (King's Canyon had just opened to Road's End.) We filled up a full sized truck. The lodge operator seemed a bit on the grumpy side, but his demeanor changed when he found out that we actually wanted to buy gas, not just take photos of the gas pumps. We went into the bar to pay, which had good rustic character...a place I could imagine having a brew.


edit: I looked at one of the news videos and the guy who pumped our gas was the owner of the lodge

The couple of times I saw it on a map and thought maybe I'd need gas. This was back in 2006 when the price of gas was pretty high. The gas station at Stony Creek had premium for about $3.90 a gallon. I remember buying premium in Fresno for $3.25 a gallon. When I got there it was $31 for 5 gallons. I decided not to and just hope that I'd make it to Fresno that night for dinner without running out of gas, before coming back to our campsite. I think I barely made it. I still could have stopped for gas along the way on 180.

You can read the reviews on Yelp or TripAdvisor. It seems to be a lot of negative reviews because the owner (or his employees) seemed like they felt they were being bothered, or ones who didn't care about his demeanor. Even many of the people who didn't leave bad reviews noted that the owners weren't terribly friendly. One review was that there was one fairly friendly employee during the summer months. I've also read a lot about employees who looked like they were bothered serving ice cream.

I thought about maybe reserving, but apparently the owners didn't like the thought of having to set up a reservation system. The other strange thing is that a lot of people think it's in a national park. I don't think that NPS would allow someone to operate on their land with that kind of attitude. I believe it's on Forest Service land and not necessarily a concessionaire relationship. It could be some sort of private inholding, although I don't know. The owner also seemed to have been angry about the firefighting efforts and how his business wasn't saved.
avatar Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 22, 2016 01:00PM
It appears to be an inholding. Hopefully the fire cleaned up some of their mess: http://www.mappingsupport.com/p/gmap4.php?ll=36.818811,-118.886055&z=18&t=s
avatar Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 22, 2016 01:38PM
Quote
eeek
It appears to be an inholding. Hopefully the fire cleaned up some of their mess: http://www.mappingsupport.com/p/gmap4.php?ll=36.818811,-118.886055&z=18&t=s

Forest Service areas are kind of odd with regards to private ownership of the land. There are vacation homes in some of these areas that are technically privately owned, but the the FS owns and leases the land. I recall there was a checkerboard-shaped collection of public and private land in Tahoe National Forest. Something about Central Pacific Railroad receiving every other plot of land as an incentive to build the railroad. Eventually these plots were sold, subdivided, traded, or resold back to the Forest Service.

avatar Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 22, 2016 01:47PM
Couldn't find a forest map online but other sources showed the land to be private. That doesn't surprise me at all.
Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 23, 2016 09:01AM
Gas was $1.57 a liter. (More in line with Canadian prices, eh?) We are usually in search of the cheapest gas but this was a case that we decided to support the local small business...
avatar Re: Rough Fire destroyed Kings Canyon Lodge?
January 23, 2016 01:38PM
Quote
hikerchick395
Gas was $1.57 a liter. (More in line with Canadian prices, eh?) We are usually in search of the cheapest gas but this was a case that we decided to support the local small business...

There aren't many choices in the area. When I visited as a kid in the late 70s, they actually had gas for sale at all the major NPS areas inside SEKI, including Grant Grove, Giant Forest, Lodgepole, and Cedar Grove. It's was actually Chevron branded. Eventually they were closed to the public, but I believe that the refueling facilities are still used for government and concessionaire vehicles.

Stony Creek has a full gas station with all three grades. Hume Lake only has regular and mid.

As for Kings Canyon Lodge - it looks like they repainted them in ugly red and white. Back when I passed by the paint was still there but heavily rusted. It looked like this:



The way they sell seemed to have changed a lot. When I was there they had a flat rate for 6 gallons. Some of the later signs show their gas priced by the liter, which seems rather unusual. I guess the other thing is that a lot of people thought that the place was perhaps authorized by the Forest Service, or even NPS, which it was not.
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