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Cabin Fever Redefined

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I am writing this as part of my recovery. At least this is what my pseudo-therapist-husband prescribed.

To preface this confession, my disclaimer is that I have never been one to be caught up in the material world of lavish houses, clothing and cars. I loathe the haughtiness of country clubs and abhor shopping anywhere except for R.E.I., Super Target and Costco (the latter of which is only during “sample” hours. Because evidentally I am also a big fan of freebies).

Most of our discretionary income goes towards travel, travel, travel. And muzzles for the children.

So, here’s the deal. I am obsessed with The Granddaddy Purchase of them all: a cabin in Breckenridge. Last summer, I even had a checklist detailing the reasons why this is my ideal location.

Gorgeous mountains: check
Nearby lake: check
Close proximity to Denver: check
Extensive network of hiking trails and paved bikepaths: check
Cool resort town: check

I excitedly shared my list with Jamie and elucidated that everything was in place. Until my bubble was burst: “Sure, Amber. Everything except for the financing.â€?

Oh, yeah. That minor detail.

As with most addictions, I started out as a casual user. I would glance at the listings posted outside the real estate offices on Main Street. Then it turned to flyers, which evolved into Mountain Homes Illustrated. I currently have in my possession every single flyer, pamphlet and booklet on the area.

After a recent trip to Breck, I was slowly weaning myself off the real estate sites until I found this listing.

    Authentic naturally hewn custom log home with stunning mountain views. Close to trails and the wilderness, high alpine getaway at its best. Birds of prey are your neighbors. Hot tub deck and porch are magnificent. Triple log cathedral ceiling, Douglas fir and ponderosa pine log construction, custom granite counters, different custom wood flooring themes throughout home.

The only problem? The “F” word again.

But then I found a listing that we could maybe possibly afford if we gave up all our discretionary income, television and Internet subscriptions. Oh yeah, and our current mortgage.

The glowing description of this place?

“Close to the bus route.”

I guess I’ll just keep dreaming.

So, let’s hear it: where is your ultimate location for a dream cabin?

Amber Johnson
Author: Amber Johnson

Amber is the founder and editor of Mile High Mamas, travel writer and former columnist for The Denver Post. She is a passionate community builder and loves the outdoors. She has two awesome teens and is happily married to a man obsessed with growing The Great Pumpkin.

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  • comment avatar Kari November 5, 2007

    Hands down, it’s Grand Lake. There is something about having a little place down on the water.

  • comment avatar Gretchen November 5, 2007

    South of Ouray, somewhere up in the San Juans. Near Mt. Sneffels, just because that is the best mountain peak name ever. It helps that it is sublimely beautiful.

  • comment avatar Amber November 5, 2007

    Truth be told, Ouray/Silverton is my very favorite area in Colorado. However, it failed in proximity. I just wish it was closer!

  • comment avatar dana November 5, 2007

    The house you described sounds beautiful. And I know what you mean about financing. The market is horrendous. Yikes.

    I don’t know if I want a cabin, my in-laws have one in Northern Wisconsin and I’m perfectly fine with visiting it once every other year.

    I really want a beach house in Florida. That’s my dream.

    Okay, not really. I just want to travel some place warm for a change.

  • comment avatar Tea and Bon Bons November 5, 2007

    We have actually been searching for a mtn home too (LOG, of course), for the last several years. We have trouble with the “F” word, too. We can afford a cabin, but usually ones that have “needs TLC” attached to it. We’ve been looking more in the Evergreen/Idaho Springs area, as hubby gets altitude sickness in Breck. Funny thing — the longer you wait, the more prices go up. We have acreage with plans to build, but sometimes we think “so much easier to buy than to build.” We’ll see if it ever actually materializes.

    Have you ever heard of Tiger Run? It’s not for us, but it’s popular with some weekenders. You might want to check it out, as it may be more in your price range (even if it’s not your ideal 5000 sq. ft. handcrafted log cabin with granite counters, slate floors, and ski room).

  • comment avatar Candace November 5, 2007

    I am an Estes girl myself.

  • comment avatar Jon November 5, 2007

    Snorting over the muzzle comment. Maybe I need one myself.

  • comment avatar Shannon November 5, 2007

    Oooohhhh – I’m with you on Breckenridge…Love all the family friendly festivals, great restaurant discounts pre-ski-season and just the atmosphere in general. The distance from Colorado Springs isn’t bad either…However, have you ever looked into Westcliffe or Cuchara? Both are BEAUTIFUL and way less touristy than Breckenridge – probably a little less $$$ too. Love all the great vacation spots in this state!

  • comment avatar Tina November 5, 2007

    I love Steamboat Springs. I’m a hot springs girl. With the springs in town and Strawberry Springs just out of town, it’s hard to beat!

  • comment avatar elasticwaistbandlady November 5, 2007

    Mine isn’t a cabin……it’s a paid-off cottage painted in soothing pastel turquoise and sitting nestled in the trees and close to the water.

  • comment avatar Greenstylemom November 5, 2007

    My dream place for a vacation home is Breck also, and we managed to make that dream come true! The thing about Breck is that most of the places that are actually listed are usually overpriced – obviously! Many places (like ours) are sold through realtors before they even hit the market so it helps to have a good realtor even if you are just casually looking. The prices have really gone up, but they are probably going to continue to go up as Breck is really close to being built out.

    I also think that Frisco would be a great location for not nearly as much $$. Close to all the ski resorts. Right on the lake. Great little downtown. Great bus service to everywhere.

    Hope you can make your dream come true someday.

  • comment avatar Amber Johnson November 5, 2007

    Overpriced? In Breck? I hadn’t noticed. 🙂

  • comment avatar loralee November 5, 2007

    Next door to yours.


  • comment avatar Heather C. November 5, 2007

    I already live in a sort of weekendy/ski resort area on the Western slope. It’s all good and skiing is fun but I dream of the beach. Not a huge wave beach, more of a cove, really.

    Breckenridge is lovely though. Good luck with the house hunting, there has got to be a nugget of a home out there with your name on it! 🙂

  • comment avatar Tiffany November 6, 2007

    My dream is more of a beach house 🙂 Nothing fancy. South Padre Island, Texas is beeautiful but uhhh we would have problemsn with the “F” word as well. i told my husand when my boys are in college i’m moving to Hawaii and becoming a beach bum. I set my goals real high ;0) LOL

  • comment avatar Amber Johnson November 6, 2007

    A beach bum in Hawaii? Now THAT is more like it!

  • comment avatar diana/sunshine November 6, 2007

    my husband and i have also had the dream of owning a cabin somewhere in the mountains. we moved here from california in 1990. we looked back then and we could kick ourselves for not buying – everything was a lot cheaper back then.

    our ideal locations is also the breckinride/frisco/dillon area. but i also loves estes park – maybe even more than breck. but if we could afford it (the f word is definitely our problem), i’d take a cabin just about anywhere in the mountains.

  • comment avatar Lori A Schumann December 12, 2007

    I vote for Grand Lake. It’s beautiful in the winter and it’s beautiful in the summer. It’s a four season resort!

    Does anyone ever get together for a girl’s hike. I’m interested in starting a hiking group.

  • comment avatar Julia January 17, 2008

    Amber, keep your dream alive. I shared the exact same affliction and it just became a reality. (Lived on a remote pacific island so I’m all through with that fantasy. Breck is for me!)