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The Last of the Lodges: 25 American Greats

PENNSYLVANIA

Glendorn 1032 W. Corydon St., Bradford; 800/843-8568 or 814/362-6511, fax 814/368-9923; doubles from $375, including all meals. An oil baron's estate, this 12-room lodge emphasizes old-fashioned, upper-crust privacy. On 1,280 acres bounded by Allegheny National Forest, Glendorn's trout streams and hiking trails are for use by guests only. The redwood Big House, with its massive sandstone fireplace, cathedral ceiling, and billiards room, recalls family gatherings from a privileged era.

NEW YORK

Lake Placid Lodge Whiteface Inn Rd., Lake Placid; 518/523-2700, fax 518/523-1124; doubles from $200, including breakfast. Nestled among white birches, sugar maples, and balsam firs, Lake Placid Lodge is a classic Adirondack great camp with all the rustic trimmings in its 22 rooms and 15 cabins. Fallen in love with the twig-and-birchbark bed in your room?It's for sale, as is most of the furniture at the lodge.

MAINE

Little Lyford Pond Camps Greenville; 207/280-0016; cabins from $130, double, including all meals. In true north-woods fashion, you'll have to dodge logging trucks to reach this camp near the Katahdin massif. Prepare to rough it: Little Lyford gets back to basics. The eight log cabins, built in the 1870's, are outfitted with woodstoves, pine beds, and kerosene lanterns, and sleep two to eight people. Stoke up on Maine blueberry pancakes before a hike on the Appalachian Trail or fly-fishing on Lyford's two trout ponds.

NORTH CAROLINA

The Swag 2300 Swag Rd., Waynesville; 828/926-0430, fax 828/926-2036; doubles from $240, including all meals. From the Swag's rocker-lined front porch, you can almost reach out and touch Cold Mountain, made famous by Charles Frazier's recent best-seller of the same name. This old-time retreat high in the mist-shrouded Smokies is a favorite with Southern families. Cobbled together from Appalachian log structures, the 16-room lodge has down-home touches such as woven rugs scattered on rough-hewn floors and a bearskin clamped onto the wall above a fieldstone fireplace.

Pilot Knob Inn New Pilot Knob Lane, Pilot Mountain; 336/325-2502; doubles from $110, including breakfast. Tarheel tobacco is long gone from the curing barns atop Pilot Knob. Instead, you'll find juniper beds and antique rugs in six log cabins and a two-bedroom cedar cottage, which were converted from the old barns and reassembled at this Carolina hideaway on the eastern slope of Pilot Mountain. Does the scene ring a faint bell?Think Opie, Andy, Aunt Bee, and Barney: "Mount Pilot" appeared in The Andy Griffith Show,and the star was born and raised in the area.

SOUTH CAROLINA

Lodge at Lofton's Landing 8889 Hwy. 17, McClellanville; 843/720-7332, fax 843/856-8468; three-bedroom house with loft from $400. Invite your seven best friends for a good ole Dixie house party in this modern Low Country lodge, overlooking the salt marshes of Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge in Bull Bay. The great room and wraparound veranda have knockout sunset views. A private dock extends into the tidal creek, where you can drop a fishing line or crab net. Or charter the lodge's "flats" boat, and your captain will show you deserted barrier-island beaches perfect for a picnic and a swim.*

HOW TO FIND MORE LODGES

Experts in all things lodge-related, Montana-based Off the Beaten Path (800/445-2995 or 406/586-1311, fax 406/587-4147) pairs clients and lodges, recommends guides, and plans adventures in the Rockies, the Southwest, and Alaska.

In her book Great Lodges of the West (W.W. West, $30), Christine Barnes captures the early spirit of roughing it at park and railroad lodges--the Ahwahnee, Bryce Canyon, Crater Lake--many of which you can stay in.

City slickers can toughen their tender feet at one of the lodges in Canada and 12 states represented by the Dude Ranchers Association (970/223-8440).

THE LODGE AT HOME

Inspired by the wilderness look?These craftsmen and purveyors of rustic chic bring the great outdoors inside.

If your dining hall's begging for a chandelier or candelabra made of antlers, call on Crystal Farm (18 Antelope Rd., Redstone, Colo.; 970/963-2350).

Larry Hawkins creates twig mosaics on beds and dressers at L. J. Hawkins Rustic Art Furnishings (4621 Markey Rd., Roscommon, Mich.; 517/821-6985).

The Becker Co. (155 Center St., Jackson Hole, Wyo.; 307/733-1331) has assembled a world-class collection of 19th-century Plains Indian artifacts--baskets, blankets, pottery, beadwork.

For weathered barn-post tables, leather chairs, and Telluride-inspired flatware, consult the man who practically invented the look: Ralph Lauren (867 Madison Ave., New York; 212/606-2100).

At Sampson Bog Studio (171Paradise Point, Mayfield, N.Y.; 518/661-6563), Barney and Susan Bellinger construct Adirondack great camp desks decorated with wildlife oil paintings and pinecone flourishes.

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