Rush Creek Lodge Yosemite, a Walk in the Park

If the thought of wandering Yosemite National Park, gazing at waterfalls or hiking Hetch-Hetchy reservoir trails gets you excited, then Rush Creek Lodge Yosemite is the place for you. Family-friendly or romantically-inclined, this luxury lodge bordering Yosemite National Park, sits on 20 woodland acres surrounded by fresh air, forest and furry animals. That’s in addition to swimming pools, hot tubs, zip lines, restaurants and a luxury spa opening soon. 

Rush Creek Lodge Yosemite lodge rooms with swimming pool view in Groveland, California

 

Wellness at Rush Creek Lodge

From stargazing to yoga classes and therapeutic massage, Rush Creek Lodge has your best interest at heart when it comes to wellness. It’s all about connecting with yourself and re-connecting with nature through recreation and bringing out the kid in you. But you don’t need to be traveling with kids to connect with your inner child.

My husband and I found the recreation desk at Rush Creek to be our best stop when it comes to planning guided tours. From wandering below Yosemite’s iconic waterfalls, discovering Half Dome or joining a photo safari on Yosemite’s Valley tour, there is something to please the first-time visitor, as well as repeat park enthusiasts. I highly recommend making advance reservations if you have your heart set on a specific lodge activity or tour, as they do fill up quickly, depending on the season. 

Hotel guests roast marshmallows over blazing logs above a fire pit at Rush Creek Lodge Yosemite in California.

 

Resort open year-round 

Speaking of seasons, my advice is to visit the park in winter, spring or fall; as Rush Creek Lodge is a year-round resort. Summer is a busy time in Yosemite, visit off season if possible. If communing with nature is not your primary focus, relax, they have the concept of pampering down to a science. Sign up for a Yosemite Paint Party or California Craft Beer Tasting, depending on what’s on tap at the lodge. Please note that these activities all require an additional fee. 

If you don’t like to plan ahead, Rush Creek Trails offers 5 miles of nature trails and bike baths right from the property. Rent a mountain bike, take a hike, slide down the 60 foot slide, or give your kids a spin on the zip lines. There’s also horseshoes, ping pong and corn hole if you want to involve multi-generations or get your competitive juices flowing. 

Salt water swimming pool with outdoor fire pit on patio.

Water dogs will appreciate the 2,400 square foot salt water pool. Heated year-round, the pool area also includes a large family-friendly hot tub and a separate and smaller adult-only hot tub.

Personally, I’m all about a massage after a day at Yosemite or perhaps horseback riding nearby. Currently there are several treatment rooms on property, but a state-of-the-art Rush Creek Spa will be opening soon – check back for details. 

Rustic Rush Creek Lodge king room with custom art and feather pillows on the bed.

Featuring 143 rooms, we stayed in a Lodge King. There are also Lodge Suites and Hillside Villas. Ours rented for $300 per night, off season, in addition to room tax. Rates range from $300 to $610 for a 2 bedroom villa in the summer season.  You can compare rates to look for a better deal on Hotels.com or Expedia. All rooms include a balcony looking out to the forest or swimming pool, free wifi, coffee and tea. I’d describe the rooms as contemporary, yet rustic with custom art and feather pillows. My one complaint is that there were no robes in the hotel room, making my nightly dash to the pool a bit chilly in the winter. 

Rush Creek Lodge breakfast of Eggs Benedict, home fries, yogurt parfait with fresh berries, cranberry juice and coffee.

Dining at Rush Creek 

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Most times I would agree with that statement, unless the place you are staying at offers nightly s’mores. Then s’mores move up the priority scale for me. Confession time, s’more fixings are offered nightly from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at the fire pit. If you hit the s’mores early enough at Rush Creek Lodge, you’ll have time to drive over to sister property, Evergreen Lodge and check out their s’more party from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. Of course, I’m not saying that I would do such a thing… 

So back to breakfast, I ordered the Country Benedict with smoked ham, poached eggs, country toast, hollandaise sauce and potatoes, while my husband enjoyed the Rush Creek Skillet. There’s also tasty granola with fresh fruit, sandwiches and a housemade cinnamon roll as big as a child’s head. For those wanting to hit Yosemite early, stop by the General Store and pick up something from their grab and go selection.

We didn’t dine at the restaurant for lunch or dinner, but folks I spoke with said the dinner selection was very good (and they ate at the restaurant five nights in a row.) We’ll be back.

 

 

Welcome sign Yosemite Rush Creek Lodge in Groveland, California

 

Review and all photos by travel writer Nancy D. Brown, who was a guest of Rush Creek Lodge Yosemite. As always, all opinions are her own.

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