It’s not too late to enjoy one last bonfire on a coastal beach, a fall-color road trip, a fall festival, a weekend picking huckleberries, a family fishing getaway or just a weekend of some solitude. You can do all that and more, while saving on your lodging costs.
In some places, the attraction is the fall colors. That is certainly the case right now around Mount Rainier, said Janna Osterhaus, who owns Jasmer’s Rainier Cabins in Ashford with her husband, Luke.
“There are tinges of fall color on the hills and meadows of wildflowers (at the same time) for the first time in 40 years,” Osterhaus said.
Visitors also can watch golden mantle ground squirrels collecting seeds out of pine cones, or do some mushroom harvesting of their own.
A fall trip to the Long Beach Peninsula offers events such as the 91st Cranberrian Fair this weekend, the eight-mile Discover Trail – a walking/bike path from Long Beach to Ilwaco – and miles of empty beaches.
“We have the cranberry harvest, and the festival in October. There are tours and everything,” said Pat Turner, who owns Boardwalk Cottages in Long Beach with her husband, Bill.
“The weather is usually best this time of year. We don’t have as much fog. It’s also a little more laid back because there aren’t as many people with kids,” she added.
Another advantage to traveling this time of year: There are more vacancies. That means lodging establishments often offer better deals to get more customers in the doors.
“People are out and about taking trips, knowing there will be vacancies,” Turner said. “In the summer, they know if they don’t have a reservation, there won’t be vacancies.”
To help get you started in planning a fall trip, here is a sampling of some lodging deals we’ve found.
MOUNT RAINIER NATIONAL PARK
Winter getaway: Rooms at the National Park Inn start at $112 per night from Nov. 1-April 30. The deal includes a full American breakfast served in the inn’s dining room and afternoon tea in the guest lounge with freshly baked treats. Snowshoes and cross-country ski rentals are available in the Longmire General Store.
Reservations: mtrainierguestservices.com, 360-569-2275
Buy three, one free: If you rent a cabin at Jasmer’s Rainier Cabins for three nights, you can get the fourth night free.
Reservations: 360-569-2682, jasmers.com
Saturday night fun: Alta Crystal Resort offers 15 percent off its rooms and is still hosting Saturday night bonfires and s’more making for its guests. The fall escape rate ends Oct. 31.
Reservations: 800-277-6475, altacrystalresort.com
Last-minute deals: VisitRainier.com has a “Last Minute Lodging” section that runs from noon Thursday to noon Friday. It offers web-only special pricing at various lodging establishments around the mountain for the upcoming weekend. Some rooms have been as much as 70 percent off. The lodging participants and specials vary from week to week.
OLYMPIC NATIONAL PARK
Advance purchase rate: You can get 25 percent off one night’s lodging through Oct. 31. You have to make a full prepayment when you make your reservation.
The discount is available at Kalaloch Lodge, Lake Quinault Lodge, Sol Duc Hot Springs and Lake Crescent Lodge. There are some blackout dates and penalties for canceling within two weeks of your reservation.
85th anniversary offer: This year is the 85th anniversary for Lake Quinault Lodge and the lodge is offering an $85 rate now through Dec. 22. The special rate is good Sundays-Thursdays only.
Reservations: 888-896-3818, olympicnationalparks.com
WASHINGTON STATE PARKS
Ike Kinswa State Park: Cabin rentals are $10 off now through May 14. The cabins, which sleep up to five people, are $55 a night. Each cabin is 12-feet-by-24-feet and features a 6-foot covered front porch, picnic table, electric heat and lights. Bathrooms and showers are nearby. The park is located on the north side of Mayfield Lake, a good fishing location.
Grayland Beach State Park: The park’s yurts have a $10 discount per night, going for $60 a night through May 14. Each yurt is 16 feet in diameter by 10 feet high and is furnished with bunk beds that sleep three, a queen-size futon, interior light, small end table and heater. Outside are a picnic table, fire grill, electric outlet and deck. Some yurts are accessible for people with disabilities. Bathrooms and showers are nearby. The Pacific Ocean park is just south of Westport.
Reservations: 888-226-7688, parks.wa.gov
Last-minute special: You can receive 20 percent off a second night’s stay when you reserve a cottage at Seabrook no more than two days in advance. This offer, good through Dec. 23, excludes holidays.
Reservations: 877-346-3850, seabrookcottagerentals.com
Quiet season: The Polynesian in Ocean Shores offers discounts of $20-$40 a night, depending on what type of room you book.
Reservations: 800-562-4836, thepolynesian.com
Boardwalk Cottages: On weekends, if you stay Friday-Saturday or Saturday-Sunday, you get 25 percent off the second night. If you stay Sundays-Thursdays, you get 50 percent off the second night or a third night free. The deals are valid through March, excluding holidays, festivals and special events.
Reservations: 360-642-2305, 800-569-3804
Pre-season deals: While many places are entering their slow season, the White Pass Village Inn is about to start its busy winter season. It’s a good base for seeing the tamarack change colors. But now through Oct. 31 you can get a deal on a condominium. A standard one-bedroom condo is $110, compared to the $190 winter rate.
Reservations: 509-672-3131, whitepassvillageinn.com
Fall discount: Stay now through November at Featherwinds Bed and Breakfast Guest Inn and save $40 a night. Suites are now $145-$155. This includes the Oktoberfest weekends. Festival and wedding weekends require a two-night minimum stay.
Reservations: 866-319-4637, featherwinds.com
Jeffrey P. Mayor: 253-597-8640