Five lodges you can’t reach by car

Excerpt from: Five lodges you can’t reach by car

By Katherine Dorsett, CNN
April 19, 2011 1:10 p.m. EDT

LeConte Lodge
Book early at LeConte Lodge. Guests often have to reserve a room at this popular Tennessee getaway up to a year in advance.
The lodge, nestled 6,500 feet atop Mount LeConte, offers breathtaking views of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Stunning sunrises and sunsets bookend the days and sometimes visitors will spot black bears roaming nearby.

“LeConte is very rustic and creates an atmosphere of simpler times,” says frequent visitor Tom Collins of Duluth, Georgia.

LeConte bills itself as the perfect getaway from a high-tech world, so don’t expect modern conveniences at this inn. It’s very primitive with a wash basin and bucket for sponge baths, no electricity, no television, kerosene lanterns for light, and propane heaters for warmth. There is one up-to-date luxury: flush toilets.

The only way to reach LeConte is on foot along one of five trails that lead to the inn. The shortest trail is five miles and the longest is eight.

Supplies are brought in via helicopter and llama pack trains since it’s so remote. LeConte can accommodate 60 guests a night in either small personal log cabins or three multiroom lodges.

The staff prepares family-style meals (think meat and potatoes) served in the lodge’s dining room with your choice of coffee, hot chocolate and water. Wine is provided for an additional cost.

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