Last weekend, the Pit Stops for Kids crew had the opportunity to stay in one of the most unique locations we’ve ever experienced: a tree house high in the air! At Out ‘N About Treesort near Cave Junction, Oregon, guests have their pick of one of 15 tree houses, elevated yurts, cabins, and tree ‘gazebos’ in which to spend the night. Each one is different, offering different views, different features, and different amenities (or as they say there, ‘amenitrees’).
It only took us approximately ten minutes to reach the resort from Highway 199 (which runs between I-5 and the Oregon coast), or 40 minutes from I-5. When we arrived, we were greeted by the friendly resort staff and shown around the beautiful property of mountain meadows, sugar pine trees, pasture, and hillside. It didn’t take us long to realize that Out ‘N About is all about making guests feel at home: in addition to the main lobby with couches, games, TV, freshly brewed coffee, and wireless, a ‘Central Amenitrees’ cabin is situated adjacent to a communal fire pit housing a full kitchen for guest use, a spacious bathroom with shower for those guests without plumbing in their tree house, and numerous BBQs, dishes, wood, charcoal, and the like.
Further exploration of the resort yielded elevated tree platforms, rope bridges high in the air, a rope swing the kids couldn’t get enough of, stables, an expansive zip line course, and a swimming hole beautifully landscaped and fed by the nearby Illinois River. Put simply: this is kid paradise.
Of course, we were anxious to see our tree house. We stayed in the ‘Swiss Family’ complex, which comfortably slept the five of us in two distinct tree house cabins: the upper two-story adult unit has a double bed along with a child size single and rocking chair on the landing and large covered open deck below. ‘The kids’ unit, connected by a swinging bridge, has a bunk bed and a small table with chairs like the playhouse all kids want. We used the bathroom facilities in the ‘Central Amenitrees’ (only 75 feet away), but had electricity and heat.
The older two kids loved having their own ‘place’ connected by the bridge, and Toby was more than happy to curl up on the cozy bench bed in the main unit. And while this was a tree house in the truest sense of the word (we had to climb a ladder to enter our unit by a trap door), it was comfortable and all our needs were met: fresh towels and sheets awaited us, and we had plenty of warm blankets to accompany our heater. We even had a fridge and the kids had a fire pole to shimmy down to the ground! (See more photos of the tree houses and even virtual tours of the interiors!)
Date Last Visited: October 2, 2010
Distance from the Interstate: 40 minutes from I-5.
Room Rates: Tree house rates range from $120-$250 per night. Check their pricing page for details.
Dining Options: ‘Central Amenitrees’ is stocked with everything you need to cook or BBQ a meal (minus the food), and breakfast is served daily (included in the price of your tree house). We found the breakfast to be delicious (in fact, the kids went back for a ‘second breakfast’ about an hour later!). Completely homemade, during our stay we had our pick of quiches, egg dishes, french toast, muffins, fresh fruit, and cereal. If you want to dine elsewhere for lunch or dinner, nearby Cave Junction offers several choices. Our pick: Wild River Pizza on Hwy 199.
Activities: There’s plenty to do at Out ‘N About. In addition to simply letting your kids have the run of the place (kids under 8 need to be with an adult while exploring), families can sign up for a number of activities and classes on the grounds, all listed daily in the main lobby. During our visit, horseback rides were offered, in addition to a mosaics and felting class and the activity my kids were most looking forward to: the zip-line.
Out ‘N About has an extensive network of zip-lining courses on their property, designed to put a smile on the face of both novices and experts. We signed up for their ‘Basics Course’, which gave us five long zip-line experiences over the meadow and through the trees. The zip-lines soared over 70 feet over the ground in some places, and we had an absolute blast zipping from tree platform to tree platform high in the air.
The Out ‘N About zip line staff were professional, capable, and very friendly, putting the kids (and us) instantly at ease and making the afternoon all the more fun. We felt very safe in their hands as they suited us up in harnesses and taught us the basics on a practice line. Even Toby (only 35 pounds) was able to join the fun (and had a blast!). (Weight limits do apply, and sessions are limited to a certain number of guests; call the Out ‘N About office for current details, and check this site for more details). After completing the Basics Course, guests have the option of more zip-lining fun on their more advanced lines.)
Zip-lining starts at $45 per person, and you don’t have to be a guest to give it a try. If you are driving along Hwy 199 and have a few hours to spare, it’s well worth the pit stop! (Call ahead to reserve a spot!)
Other Attractions in the Area: There’s a lot to do in Southern Oregon, from swimming in the Illinois River in the summer to picking blackberries in the fall. We combined our stay at Out ‘N About with a day trip to Oregon Caves National Monument, located approximately 20 miles away on OR-46. Check out our review of Oregon Caves and consider making it a stop!
Directions: Out ‘N About is located at 300 Page Creek Road, Cave Junction OR. From I-5, take Grants Pass exit 55. Take Hwy 199 28 mi. to Cave Junction. South of Cave Junction about 1/2 of a mile, take a left on Rockydale Road. Go 7.5 miles to the stop sign at Waldo Road and make a left. About a mile to next stop sign, make a right on Takilma Road. In 2.5 miles you will see Page Creek Road on the left; turn left and go about 1/4 mile. You will see mail boxes and 300 Page Creek Rd. Turn left on gravel road and take it to the end.
From the south on HWY 199, turn right just past the flashing light and old cop car at the O’Brien store onto O’Brien st. O’Brien street dead ends on Waldo Rd. Take a right onto Waldo Rd. Stay on Waldo for about 4 miles until you hit the stop sign at Takilma Rd. Make a right on Takilma Road, and in 2.5 miles you will see Page Creek Road on the left. Turn left and go about 1/4 mile; you will see mail boxes and 300 Page Creek Rd. Turn left on gravel road and take it to the end.
As I disclose with all compensated reviews, Out ‘N About generously compensated us for the price of our rooms and my zip lining adventure. While we greatly appreciate their hospitality, this compensation came with no expectation of a positive review.