The Stories of Grand Lake Lodge
The Documentary of a Colorado Rocky Mountain Treasure
The Magic of Grand Lake Lodge Comes to Life
My name is Bob Phillips and I am from Texas.
I am one of the lucky ones that got to work at Grand Lake Lodge located on the edge of the Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado.
During the summer of 1969, I was 19 years old, and it was one of the most wonderful summers of my life.
Those memories are still with me.
Grand Lake Lodge Colorado– A Grand Old Lady at 85
By Leanne Benton (2006)
Last summer Grand Lake Lodge quietly turned 85 years old. Like many octogenarians, the lodge has had a full life. It began with an eagerly anticipated “birth,” has many rich memories, suffered a great tragedy, and today maintains a dignified elegance reminiscent of days gone by.
Grand Lake Lodge in Colorado opened in 1920, a time when numerous lodges and dude ranches were being constructed around the newly-established Rocky Mountain National Park. However, Grand Lake Lodge’s origin was unique. It was the only lodge constructed on existing Rocky Mountain National Park owned land and with the park Superintendent’s enthusiastic input and endorsement.
This DVD contains 2.5 hours of Amazing Stories of Grand Lake Lodge Colorado!
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Origin of the Lodge
When Rocky Mountain National Park was established in 1915, construction was well underway on Old Fall River Road, the first road to cross this part of the Rockies.
Realizing that the road would greatly increase tourism, Superintendent L. Claude Way wanted to establish overnight lodging on the park’s west side.
Some time between 1917 and 1919, Superintendent Way and the lone west side ranger, Howard Beehler, found a level area of park land above the town of Grand Lake with magnificent views that they felt would be ideal. Way and Beehler envisioned a camp for the site, likely a facility consisting of wooden platforms with canvas tents. The camp never was built. Instead, a beautiful rustic two-story log and stone structure rose on the site.
In the spring of 2006 I received a letter from Bob Scott at the lodge. Bob has maintained a lifetime career there at the Grand Lake Lodge. He started working there the same summer I was there in 1969. His letter stated that the James family, who has owned and operated the lodge since 1953, were going to sell the lodge and that they were hosting a reunion of all past employees.
I went to the reunion with my video camera and sound equipment and worked 4 days straight to shoot a documentary of the stories and images of the Grand Lake Lodge in Colorado, as told by the James family and many past employees who had worked at the lodge from 1936 to 2006. This was my gift to the James family.
Anyone who ever worked or visited the lodge, knows what a magical place it was to spend the summer.
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Learn how the lodge was built in 1920 narrated by Author and Lodge Historian Michael Geary
Listen to what it was like to be a maid and waitress in 1937
Hear interviews from Bob Scott as he talks about his 37 years working at the lodge
Hear about the Talent Shows from those that performed in them
Hear the stories of the life long romances created at the Lodge
Take a tour of the restaurant kitchen with Bob Scott
Hear about the Indians who attacked the arriving busses
Take a tour from a boat on Grand Lake
Hear about the 1950's bus stories from the man who drove them