Best Western Move Manor Motor Inn
Monte Vista, Colorado
Sleeping Quarters A room in a two-story motel that horseshoes around a 50-foot-tall movie screen, in operation since 1955. What You Get Speakers and a picture window for watching the G, PG, and PG-13 movies (shown May 10 through September 12), a snack bar selling popcorn and candy, Kelloff’s Movie Manor Restaurant, and a playground. What to Bring Comfy shoes for scaling the awesome mountains of sand in nearby Sand Dunes National Park. 719/852-5921; www.bestwesterncolorado.com; doubles from $86.
Fairlee Motel and Drive-in Theater
Sleeping Quarters One of 12 rooms, all of which look out on the screen at this 1950 drive-in. What You Get Picture windows and wall-mounted speakers for watching nightly features (from July 4 through Labor Day) as you lounge in bed, and a concession stand serving burgers made of Angus beef from the owners’ farm, along with pints of Ben & Jerry’s. What to bring Bathing suits for a dip in nearby Lake Morey. 802/333-9192; doubles from $69.
Fire Lookout Towers
Many of these high-up huts, once used by forest rangers watching for flames, are now available for nightly rental. You’ll need to bring water, food, bedding, and battery-powered gear—and be prepared to hike to get where you’re going.
Sleeping Quarters A 1939 cabin on stilts that once housed park rangers, 7,115 feet up in the Bitterroot National Forest. What You Get The Anaconda Pintler Wilderness (to the east) and the Bitterroot Mountains (to the west) in a room with wraparound windows, a double bed, and two sleeping mats; logs and an ax for the wood-burning stove; and an outhouse. What to bring Water, food, bedding, propane for the cooktop and lantern, and packs for your gear—the hut is a 1 1/2-mile hike from the road. 877/444-6777; recreation.gov; lookout tower from $30.
Bear Basin Butte Lookout and Pierson Cabin
Sleeping Quarters A fir-paneled cabin towering over the Six -Rivers National Forest. What You Get Three double beds, a window overlooking the Siskiyou Mountains, dining areas inside and out, a fire ring, an outhouse, and a key to the observation tower, a 250-foot hike from the cabin. 877/444-6777; www.recreation.gov; $75.
Sleeping Quarters One of California’s oldest lookout towers—built in 1931—4,089 feet up in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. What You Get Two twin beds in the 14’ x 14’ restored cabin, views of Mount Shasta and Castle Crags State Park, a table, and an outhouse—on a site accessible by car. 877/444-6777; www.recreation.gov, $35.
Indian Ridge Lookout
McKenzie Bridge, Oregon
Sleeping Quarters A 1958 cabin-on-stilts located 60 miles east of Eugene (and an easy quarter-mile hike from the road)—still used occasionally by fire watchers. What You Get Two twin beds; chopped wood for campfires; wild bear grass, huckleberries, and flowers; plus a view of the snowcapped Three Sisters. 541/822-3381; www.recreation.gov; $40.