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Cozy Cabin in the Woods, Pine-Scented Days, Starry Nights

Truckee, CA, USA
  • Cabin1200 sqft
  • Bedrooms3
  • Sleeps6
  • Bathrooms2
  • Half Baths0
  • Minimum Stay2 - 5 nights

2 Bedroom+Loft Bedroom / 2 Bath Cabin Close to Nature Trail

OUR COZY CABIN IN THE WOODS is easy to access on a level parcel in Tahoe Donner just above the town of Truckee. The two-story house was one of the first cabins built in Tahoe Donner in the mid-1970s. The lot, which has young and mature Lodgepole and Jeffrey pines, cedar and aspen trees, is adjacent to a corner greenbelt for added woodland privacy. It is located on a loop street, perfect for morning walks and safe bike rides for children. A nature trail begins directly across the street, which in one direction leads to Trout Creek Recreation Center—with swimming pools, hot tubs, steam room, sauna, gym, driving range, playground and a nearby deli—and the other direction to the right follows the creek, past beaver ponds through the forest to Northwoods Center—with a swimming pool, tennis courts, pizza restaurant, playground and activities.

It is an easy drive from the Bay Area about 180 miles from Berkeley on I-80. It is a perfect getaway from the hustle-bustle of urban life with plenty of time for family games, outdoor fun, reading or just relaxing.

The cabin is enjoyable in all seasons. Winter is a wonderland with world-class cross-country and downhill ski resorts just minutes away: Boreal, Sugar Bowl, Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows, Northstar and more. Tahoe Donner’s own cross-country course is the second largest in the Sierras and the downhill course is an affordable family ski area. Spring and fall are quieter times with fewer people vacationing. Summer is an ideal time to visit with warm, sunny days, deep blue skies, cool pine-scented nights with a canopy of stars. There are hiking and biking trails, a championship golf course and tennis courts. A variety of restaurants, cafes and shops are available in Truckee. Lake Tahoe is just a beautiful drive away with an array of mountain activities in between.

The cabin, decorated in a mini-lodge flavor, comfortably sleeps up to six people with two bedrooms plus a loft bedroom. The main floor bedroom has two twin beds; the second floor bedroom has one queen; the loft area has one queen. The two bathrooms (one tub with overhead shower and one walk-in shower) have been recently remodeled with new vanities and counters, low-flow toilets and cork flooring. The kitchen has been expanded and remodeled with beautiful new knotty Alder wood cabinetry, countertops, appliances and cork flooring. It has a well-stocked kitchen with cooking paraphernalia, Fiesta dinnerware and a cupboard of staples. Use what you need; replace what you use. The dining area has comfortable seating for six. The living room area has a wood burning stove and a view of the forest. Firewood is available and stacked in the garage.

There are lots of board games for children and adults, a variety of books on the shelf, a small eclectic CD collection, classical and otherwise. We have a 32" Samsung TV to play movies on our BluRay DVD/CD player. There is also an easy plug-in for any mp3 player as well as a Western Digital USB device for playing movies from your USB memory stick.

The two-car garage is detached (we share part of the garage with our neighbor who cares for the cabin and keeps the sidewalk clear in the winter). The native Sierra landscape surrounds the house with plenty of places to make tree forts, snow caves, play hide and seek, have picnics and BBQs.

Internet: We now have wifi. Although our original intention when we purchased the cabin was to have a restful haven away from our busy, urban lives, we recently decided to offer internet to our guests. Our modem uses capped bandwidth and is not intended for unlimited streaming, but it should be able to handle emails and typical web browsing with no problem. Trout Creek Recreation Center has wifi available also.

This is a non-smoking cabin. We love animals and pets, but unfortunately some family members have allergies, so pets are NOT allowed. You might be fortunate to watch deer walk through the back yard, see a bunny or two, Stellar Jays and other forest birds, chipmunks and squirrels, or witness beavers building their dam just down the nature trail in the meadow pond.

Tahoe Donner passes are available to our guests. Each pass allows four people access (with guest fees) to: Trout Creek Recreation Center pools, spa, gym, classes and playground; Northwoods Clubhouse pool and playground; Tahoe Donner's private beach at the east end of Donner Lake where kayaks, paddle boards, canoes can be rented or picnic area, sandy beach play and swimming area can be enjoyed.

Top activities include hiking, biking, swimming, golfing, kayaking, skiing, snowshoeing, stargazing, relaxing. Visit Tahoe Donner's website for upcoming seasonal events.


Judy July and Norm Mayell

Member Since 2015
Response rate:
Response time:
within a few hours
Calendar last updated:
Apr 17, 2018
About Judy July and Norm Mayell

Our family has had many memorable seasons at the cabin: skiing and sledding with our kids and their classmates, reading stories on dark winter nights in front of the wood stove, biking and hiking lots of trails on the north shore, watching Fourth of July fireworks at Lake Tahoe or Donner Lake, kayaking on Donner Lake, star gazing, outdoor concerts and theater productions, playing golf in the mountains where your ball travels farther, visiting nearby mining town Virginia City, or driving north to Graeagle on Highway 89. It's a sweet life. Mostly we have fun.

Judy July and Norm Mayell purchased this Cabin in 1996

Why Judy July and Norm Mayell chose Truckee

Living in the dense urban Bay Area, we longed to have a place where our children (and now grandchildren) could play outdoors in all seasons, make forts and snow caves, watch wildlife, breathe pine-scented mountain air and observe the starry sky away from city glare. We chose this property because it is adjacent to a green-belt common area, which gives added privacy and space. It is a level lot – a plus when driving on snowy roads. This is a perfect get-away cabin with easy access to many amenities within Tahoe Donner as well those within driving distance, for example, Lake Tahoe, Donner Lake, Squaw Valley, Northstar, Sugar Bowl, Emerald Bay, Shakespeare at Sand Harbor, historic downtown Truckee, Reno, Graeagle, Sierraville hot springs, rivers, lakes, mountains, forests, skiing, hiking, biking, wildlife, and endless discovery!

What makes this Cabin unique

Among many things, our lot is adjacent to a double green belt, which means there is a small pine forest next to our cabin on one side and an additional stand of trees behind our cabin ending near a dry-creek bed. Directly across the street is a nature trailhead leading in one direction to Trout Creek Recreation Center (10 minute forest walk to the fitness center, spa, pools, playground, classes) and in the other direction along Trout Creek through meadows, beaver ponds, forest trails to Northwoods Country Club (tennis, pool, playground, activities, pizza pub). In winter, downhill and cross-country skiing is minutes away. In summer, we hike, swim and play golf. Tahoe Donner has an 18-hole, 7,002-yard par-72 championship golf course located on 200-acres of pristine Sierra landscape with towering pines featuring sustainable landscape practices and recognized as the “Best Greens in the Tahoe Region.” Excellent driving range, too.


    • Internet
    • Heater
    • Kids Welcome
    • Parking
    • TV
    • No Smoking


      • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6
      • Bedroom 1 Downstairs
        2 twin/ single
      • Bedroom 2 Upstairs
        1 queen
      • Loft
        1 queen


        • 2 Bathrooms
        • Bathroom 1 Downstairs
          toilet, combination tub/shower
        • Bathroom 2 Upstairs
          toilet, shower
        • All new vanities, faucets, low-flow toilets and cork floors.


          • Adventure
          • Away From It All
          • Family
          • Historic
          • Romantic
          • Sports & Activities


              • Guests provide their own meals


                  • Iron & Board
                  • Fitness Room / Equipment
                    Use amenities guest pass and visit the Spa + entry fee.
                  • Hair Dryer
                  • Heating
                    Electric wall heaters for starters. When wood burning stove heats the house, electric heaters can be turned off. The ceiling fan helps to push warm air down.
                  • Internet
                    We have WiFi. If you bring laptops or pads you may go on the internet.
                  • Garage
                    BBQ grill and chimney starter are stored in the garage. Bring your own charcoal. There are 6 chairs and a umbrella for outdoor sitting, reading and relaxing. Firewood is stored on the back wall.
                  • Linens Provided
                    Sheets, pillows, blankets and comforters provided.
                  • Living Room
                    Seats 4-6 comfortably on mission-style sofa and easy chairs--matching coffee table and end table--faces the woodstove and view of the back yard forest.
                  • Parking
                    The two-car garage is detached (we share part of the garage with our neighbor who cares for the cabin and keeps the driveway clear in the winter). So garage is for one car. Use driveway for other.
                  • Towels Provided
                    Bath and hand towels provided. Please bring your own beach towels to take to the recreation center pool/spa or to the beach.
                  • Wood Stove
                    Wood and kindling stored in garage at right rear. Eco-fan and ceiling fan increases efficiency. Use of wood stove is not allowed by home owners association in summer.


                      • Coffee Maker
                        and coffee grinder for brewing fresh, fragrant coffee. Teas and tea pots too.
                      • Dishes & Utensils
                        Fiesta Dinnerware (dinner and luncheon plates, cereal and soup bowls, serving platters and bowls) and eating utensils for 8. Mixing bowls, muffin pans, salad spinner, blender. Cooks will feel welcome!
                      • Kitchen
                        Newly remodeled with alder wood cabinetry, cork flooring, new appliances, KitchenAid ceramic cooktop stove. Floor plan opens to dining/living area.
                      • Microwave
                      • Oven
                        With convection option, broiler.
                      • Pantry Items
                        Basic cooking items: salt, pepper, spices, cooking oils, flour, sugar, oatmeal, soups, coffee, canned goods, teas. Replace what you use.
                      • Refrigerator
                        New energy star refrigerator with condiments available to share. Replace what you use.
                      • Stove
                        KitchenAid ceramic electric cooktop with convection oven. Tea kettle, pots, pans, baking pans, baking sheets and roasting pan with cooking utensils at your fingertips.
                      • Toaster
                        and pancake griddle.


                          • Dining
                            Seats six with good lighting ready for games after dinner.
                          • Dining Area
                          • comfy seating for 6 people


                              • Books
                                Childrens book collection and some for adults.
                              • DVD Player
                                BluRay DVD player plays movies on 32" screen. And also plays music CDs.
                              • Games
                                Board games, card games, chess, checkers, Scrabble, Bananagrams, Mancala, Pick-up Sticks, Jenga, Parcheesi and more.
                              • Music Library
                                Eclectic CD collection of classical, blues, world beat.
                              • Stereo
                                Tuner has 1/8" jack plug-in for mp3 players.
                              • Television
                                32" Samsung flat screen for viewing videos.
                              • Toys
                                Legos, pattern blocks, puzzles.
                              • Video Library
                                Small starter samples for children and adults. Suggest you bring your own.


                                  • Deck / Patio
                                    Small back deck for watching the forest and possibly deer. Picnic table, chairs and umbrella for outdoor living in the summer can be found in the garage.
                                  • Golf
                                    This 18-hole, 7,002-yard par-72 championship golf course is located on 200-acres of pristine Sierra landscape with towering pines featuring and recognized as the “Best Greens in the Tahoe Region.”
                                  • Kayak / Canoe
                                    Family fun at Donner Lake Beach Club about 2 miles away or Lake Tahoe about 20 miles via Hwy 89 or 267.
                                  • Outdoor Grill
                                    BBQ grill and chimney fire starter are stored in the garage.
                                  • Ski & Snowboard
                                    Tahoe Donner has an expansive cross-country ski resort worth checking out plus a small family-friendly downhill ski area. World-class downhill resorts are a short driving distance away.
                                  • Tennis
                                    Located on beautiful Bennett Flat Meadow with the waters of Trout Creek splashing nearby, the Tennis Center is the perfect place to spend a day.
                                  • Water Sports Gear
                                    Paddleboards, pedal boats, and windsurf boards available to rent at Donner Lake Beach Club. Access with guest pass and guest fee.


                                      • Long-term Renters Welcome
                                      • wheelchair inaccessible

                                        Pool / Spa

                                          • Communal Pool
                                            Year-round lap pool at Trout Creek Rec Center. Summer recreational pools at Trout Creek and Northwoods Rec Centers. Wading pool for toddlers at Trout Creek a short drive away. Guest Passes supplied.
                                          • Sauna
                                            Two hot tubs, a sauna, a steam room are available at Trout Creek Rec Center. Guest pass required with $8 guest fee.


                                              • festivals
                                              • health/beauty spa
                                              • library
                                              • live theater
                                              • marina
                                              • museums
                                              • playground
                                              • recreation center
                                              • restaurants

                                                Leisure Activities

                                                  • paddle boating
                                                  • antiquing
                                                  • boating
                                                  • gambling casinos
                                                  • horseback riding
                                                  • horseshoes
                                                  • outlet shopping
                                                  • bird watching
                                                  • photography
                                                  • scenic drives
                                                  • shopping
                                                  • sight seeing
                                                  • sledding
                                                  • walking
                                                  • wildlife viewing

                                                    Local Services & Businesses

                                                      • ATM/bank
                                                      • fitness center
                                                      • groceries
                                                      • hospital
                                                      • laundromat
                                                      • massage therapist
                                                      • medical services

                                                        Sports & Adventure Activities

                                                          • mountain climbing
                                                          • basketball court
                                                          • cycling
                                                          • equestrian events
                                                          • fishing
                                                          • fly fishing
                                                          • freshwater fishing
                                                          • golf
                                                          • golf privileges optional
                                                          • hiking
                                                          • ice skating
                                                          • kayaking
                                                          • mountain biking
                                                          • cross country skiing
                                                          • mountaineering
                                                          • pier fishing
                                                          • rafting
                                                          • sailing
                                                          • ski lift privileges
                                                          • ski privileges optional
                                                          • skiing
                                                          • snowboarding
                                                          • snowmobiling
                                                          • sound/bay fishing
                                                          • swimming
                                                          • tennis
                                                          • water skiing

                                                            House Rules

                                                            Check-in: 2:00 PM

                                                            Check-out: 12:00 PM

                                                            Cancellation Policy

                                                            100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date. You must contact the owner directly to request cancellation.

                                                            31 Reviews


                                                            Latest reviews

                                                            Great cabin, great owners!

                                                            Brian B.

                                                            My sons and I had a really enjoyable time in this cabin. It is comfortable, clean and simple, with nice touches. I'm a clean freak and it felt spotless. The owners are super conscientious. I'd stay again when in the area.

                                                            Quintessential cabin in the woods close to amazing activities!

                                                            Hana K.

                                                            This cabin and the owners couldn’t be more perfect for so many reasons. From the set up, LOCATION! And activities to the perceived private grounds and functionality! We loved it! We got stuck in the March blizzard of 2018, and Judy was on top of it, keeping us updated, provinding options and working with us to salvage our trip! A beautiful soul! As said before this cabin is the epitome of cabins. With a greenway behind it, you have the seclusion of the woods, yet it’s part of Tahoe Donner with all the amenities available! Absolutely amazing. I secretly wanted to give it a bad review so that I could keep this cabin all to myself. We will return! And we will try to convince Judy July to sell it to us some day! Did I mention it’s affordable?!?!? Just another bonus!

                                                            Great location and house has everything you need.

                                                            Debra S.-

                                                            Owners were very accessible and helpful.

                                                            Owner's Response:

                                                            Thanks for choosing to stay and taking care of our home. You are welcome to visit again soon.

                                                            Great Place

                                                            Guy F. W.

                                                            My wife, son, and granddaughter were quite pleased with their stay. Unfortunately the 3 other members of the party were unable to go. My wife said it was cozy, clean, and the kitchen was great and well supplied with dishes and cooking utensils. Everything met their expectations and more.


                                                            Great Getaway

                                                            David A.

                                                            Clean and well stocked. Wood burning stove worked great and kept us all warm and cozy.

                                                            Very clean and cozy!

                                                            Michele B.

                                                            Our family of 6 enjoyed this cozy cabins in the woods. I loved how we could look out the back window and only see the woods. It was a very natural setting. The beds were very comfortable and very clean. All the heating units worked very well. The kitchen was well stocked, and we enjoyed playing some of the board games. The cabin has a native American decorative style which is very nice. The showers worked great and the small heaters in each bathroom were very helpful. The kitchen had everything I needed to reheat a Thanksgiving dinner and all the meals I prepared. I wish the small closet near the kitchen could have some pantry shelves so that I could store my food items. I kept them in bags near the counter which was ok. I loved all the beds available for the six of us and would consider returning for another stay in the future. Truckee at Thanksgiving was uncrowded and my sons enjoyed skiing at Squaw Valley which had many upper lifts/runs open. It was a stress free stay and thankyou for everything.


                                                            Truckee, CA, USA

                                                            The cabin is 180 miles by car from the SF Bay Area -- off the Donner Pass Road exit on Interstate 80 (I-80). It is a High Sierra scenic 16 miles from Lake Tahoe via CA-89S and 36 miles from Reno on I-80. If you’re coming from an area outside of Northern California, Tahoe Donner is accessible by any of four major airports, train and bus routes. AMENITES: Downhill Ski & Cross Country. Golfing. Snowplay. Recreation. Bikeworks. Campground. Equestrian. PRIVATE: Renters can use guest passes - Trails, Fitness, Massage, Kids Club, Aquatics, Tennis, Day Camps, and Beach Club at Donner Lake.

                                                            Rates & Availability

                                                            Additional information about rental rates

                                                            Cleaning Fee
                                                            Additional Guest Fee
                                                            Damage Deposit
                                                            Tax Rate

                                                            Check in: 3:00 pm on the day of arrival. Check out: 11:00 am on the day of departure. Please put the keys back in the lock box and leave guest passes in counter-top basket A $50 fee will be charged for lost keys or guest passes and deducted from the security deposit. Additional cleaning fee may be charged for larger parties.

                                                            31 Reviews
                                                            Wonderful 4.8/5
                                                            Enter dates for accurate pricing
                                                            For booking assistance, call 888-640-7927

                                                            Property # 653858