NORTH POWDER — Antone Creek Lodge, a family-run RV park that’s the nearest overnight lodging to Anthony Lakes, opened earlier this summer in the Elkhorn Mountains.
The park is owned and operated by Rich and Lori Daniels, who also own Rich’s Portable Cabins in North Powder, along with their daughter, Harmony.
Antone Creek Lodge is along the Anthony Lakes Highway about 9 miles from Anthony Lakes Mountain Resort, with whom the business is a lodging partner.
Although the ski area operates a couple of rental yurts, and a campground and guard station are open during the summer, there are no other overnight accommodations at the resort.
The timbered property features four cabins, or “tiny homes,” built by Rich’s Portable Cabins.
The park, which opened June 22, sits between Antone Creek, which is about 50 feet from the cabins, and the highway.
Lori, 62, said that “most of our guests are out-of-town guests,” coming from, among other places, Boise, Portland, Hermiston, Bend, and Kennewick, Washington.
The cabins can be rented for up to 30 days for staycations, family reunions, ski weekends, small weddings, and other events. They range in size and capacity.
“They are private enough that you don’t have to know the people next to you but at the same time they are small enough that you are close enough to your family for family reunions,” said Harmony Daniels, 19.
Three of the cabins are pet-friendly. Lori said the other cabin is pet-free, “so it does not affect anyone’s allergies.”
According to park’s website, up to two dogs, each maximum 30 pounds, are allowed, and larger dogs are considered on an individual basis.
The Danielses have discussed the possibility of expanding the lodge by adding cabins, for which there is room.
“It just depends on how successful this is and what the need is,” said Rich, 59.
Lori said the couple attended the Sumpter Flea Market last weekend and saw what they believe was the “fourth cabin that Rich ever built.”
“That’s where we got our start, was Sumpter at the flea market,” Lori said.
The Antone Creek Lodge has been in the works for many years.
The family started Rich’s Portable Cabins in 1999.
According to a written history the couple compiled, Rich began as a self-employed timber cruiser.
“As he could see the inevitable ‘writing on the wall’ as far as job security, he decided to venture into a career that was more ‘sustainable,’” according to the written history.
Rich bought 75 acres of timber ground and a portable sawmill to continue his work in the industry “with a brighter destiny on the horizon,” according to the history.
Later he had a chance conversation at a building supply store when he heard a customer ask the clerk about storage sheds.
None was available, and Rich approached the customer and said he could build a shed for her.
Thus began his construction business.
Two of his sheds became a bunkhouse and a bath house for a couple building their home.
The couple told Rich and Lori that if their shed had been bigger they could have lived in it.
Rich’s Sheds then branched out into the manufacture of several play houses.
The “Women in Timber” organization bought one to raffle in a fundraiser and placed it in a parade in La Grande. Union County Tourism later asked Daniels to build a mobile tourist information booth. That booth took shape as a miniature cabin on wheels.
Daniels had expanded on the idea of building a larger version of the cabin on wheels. In doing so, he discovered with some research that he had built what is considered a park model RV.
The RV park is part of the Danielses’ plan to transition from the manufacturing part of their business to the the rental side.