Local craftsmen and artisans took to the slopes this summer at Mt. Baker Ski Area to build a new mid-mountain lodge. The $3.5 million Raven Hut Lodge is being constructed on the site of the old Raven Hot Café.
"We're replacing an old, tired, worn out small building with a beautiful new facility," Operations Manager Gwyn Howat said. "We've made a concerted effort to maintain history in the new Raven Hut."
Designed as a tribute, the new lodge boasts Cascadia-style architecture reminiscent of old 1920s mountain lodges, especially those found in Cascade national parks such as Mt. Rainier and Crater Lake. One such grand log and shingle lodge once sat in the vicinity of the Mt. Baker Ski Area, but burned down in 1931.
The resort brought in local craftsmen and artisans to replicate that log and shingle historic look with the new Raven Hut Lodge. Cedar shingles were split by hand for the siding and the roof. Hand-peeled logs form the supports and beams. "We plan to let the building weather to a natural gray," said Howat. "It'll look vintage."
The interior of the new lodge features log posts and beams. Photo Courtesy of Mt. Baker Ski Area.
The two-story lodge with seating for approximately 300 people will have full food services and indoor restrooms. In-floor heating and two fireplaces will add warmth.
While construction is on track, the new lodge most-likely will not open until a few weeks after the ski area cranks up its lifts pre-Thanksgiving.
"The fireplaces are just being finished, and we're beginning sheet rock and finishing up siding," Howat said. "Crews have been working six and seven days a week to finish the project. We're shooting to open the lodge the second week in December."
The new construction comes with a $3.5 million price tag. However, Howat noted that season pass rates went up by only $5, and weekend lift ticket prices will remain the same as last year.
The new lodge is located mid-mountain on the White Salmon side of the ski area. Photo Courtesy of Mt. Baker Ski Area.
The Raven Hut Lodge sits mid-mountain at the base of chairs 4, 5 and 6. It is only accessible by skis or snowboards. Click here for more info and photos about the new lodge.