Life is best with a pal! by Brad Schmidt

Guess what?!!  I have a new pal and this time it's a dog sister!!! I am thrilled and so is everybody else... well, except our sister Cracker the cat is not too keen on the addition.  Ritz is cool with her, but you know Cracker... she has her own sense of superiority as the senior animal in our pack!  Bossy, hissy .. you know the routine!  Thankfully my new sister Sierra is clueless as to what a cat even is so we are good!  I am busy working on teaching her the ropes to being a lodge dog... no jumping, barking or being a pest and how to lead our guests on fun adventures into the forest.  So far she is doing great... her one issue is to stop chewing on mom's wood planters!  I am trying to share with her the fun of crunching on pinecones, but she apparently is partial to cedar over pine!  Come on over and play won't you?!! Love, Millie (Official Concierge!) 


Summer!! by Brad Schmidt

EmptyName 5.jpg

Yikes!!  It's August already!  Where has this summer gone... speeding by I am afraid.  Hurry on over to enjoy the relaxation of our slice of paradise.  Hiking in the morning, lounging poolside in the afternoon and gazing at the stars in the evening... life is nice!  Come over and play with me, Love Millie

Let your spirit soar free like a hummingbird! by Brad Schmidt

Dad's new camera is having fun capturing the beauty at Mountain Home Lodge.  Mom is making a new batch of nectar every few days to keep up with the demand of returning hummers.  The lilacs will bloom any day now and then the birds can enjoy sweet flower nectar.  Come join us to welcome Spring!  - Millie 

 Ruby and his family are back on the mountain! 

Ruby and his family are back on the mountain! 

Spring hiking! by Brad Schmidt

 Overlook ridge 

Overlook ridge 

The ridge was wonderful this weekend with stellar skies, snow capped Cascades and wildflowers. My new friend Cody and I had a blast!  Arrowleafed balsam root is everywhere on the mountain and lupine and Indian paintbrush not far behind.  

Great wildlife viewing now too... the elk herd are in the neighborhood as well as almost nightly visits from the bear teenagers from summer 2016. Lots of deer and wonderful bird viewing from songbirds, hummingbirds and the silly wild turkey flock.  Never a dull moment for me to keep me busy "on patrol".  

 An added bonus for the adventuresome is amazing white water rafting as well as morel mushroom hunting.  Hope you can find the time to come on over and play here in May and June! 

Love Millie Vanilli, MHL Concierge

Hitchhiker! by Brad Schmidt



I decided it was a grand idea to escort two departing guests on their snowshoe trek back to town today!  Dad (Brad) didn't think that was such a keen idea as he "caught" me in action as he drove by us in the snowcat this afternoon with the other departing guests and all the luggage.  Busted!  Dad called Brecklyn to retrieve me from the road and scolded me to head home.  I was walking home alone when my sister Brecklyn showed up on her sled with this goofy collar thing?!  She hooked me up and then wanted me to run alongside the sled home?!  No way!  I was perfectly content to jump into her lap and head home driving the snowmobile!  She captured our selfie as we pulled into the lodge!  I look forward to welcoming you to my mountain home this year!  Its looking like 2018 is going to be a mighty fine year!  Happy New Year with love from Millie Vanilli

The fresh snow is making for a marvelous weekend! by Brad Schmidt


With 14" of fresh snow the mountain is a winter wonderland!  Guests broke trail this morning on snowshoes and the afternoon found many flying down the 1,700' sledding hill!  Brecklyn even sweetened the deal towing up the sledders after they walked up the hill at least once!    Guests kindly re-vamped our 2018 snowman with fresh carrot nose and tator eyes after "Sebastian" the squirrel ate the last guys face clean off him the other day!  Let's see how long this guy lasts?  Meet Bozley LaFlake... 

Christmas fun! by Brad Schmidt

Christmas snowshoe
jump for joy... it snowed!

Awoke to more fresh snow and a perfect day to play in the woods on the mountain!  Our guests Kelcey and her mom Karen were up bright and early to welcome in the day!  Hope your day was full of love and fun too!  

Our mountain paradise awaits... by Brad Schmidt

"Truly it may be said that the outside of a mountain is good for the inside of a man."  ~ George Wherry, Alpine Notes and the Climbing Foot, 1896

 Renew your spirt.  Seek the beauty of nature.  Surround your being in calm stillness.    Join us at MHL this winter.    Wishing you peace this Christmas season and joy in the new year.  Brad & Kathy Schmidt 

Renew your spirt.  Seek the beauty of nature.  Surround your being in calm stillness.  

Join us at MHL this winter.  

Wishing you peace this Christmas season and joy in the new year.  Brad & Kathy Schmidt 

Santa Claus is coming to town... by Brad Schmidt

 Meet Clarisse... one of Santa's winter does at the Lodge!  

Meet Clarisse... one of Santa's winter does at the Lodge!  

Welcome December and the Christmas Lighting Festival in Leavenworth these first 3 weekends of the month.  The village is exploding with lights and tourists while the pristine start to winter up on the mountain welcomes our holiday MHL guests!  We have had a little over a foot of snow this season and now await the next round of snow forecasted for the weekend ahead.  Bring it on as we are ready!  Santa's reindeer are currently relaxing here on the mountain too as they prepare for their big debut on the 24th.  Thought you might enjoy seeing this daily visitor as she and her pals sneak in to nab some of the winter bird seed in the feeders!   It's looking like a fabulous winter on the mountain and we hope you can join in the fun!  Space is very limited at this late date for 2018... check the accurate availability calendar online or ring us at 800-414-2378 to assist.  We can also prepare a wonderful  gift certificate for you to ease shopping for that very special someone!  Cheers!  

We are ready for winter...bring it on! by Brad Schmidt

 Inspector Cracker checking the woodpile....

Inspector Cracker checking the woodpile....

 Ritz inspects stability... rated A+!

Ritz inspects stability... rated A+!

We have enjoyed a little over 5" of snow to kick off the arrival of an early winter these past few weeks.  Looks like the lodge is ready too....fuels have been delivered, pool closed, meadow mowed in anticipation for a speedy sledding hill, wine cellar and pantry stocked and 3+ cords of great wood delivered and stacked for many a warm fire this winter!  The wood has passed the chief inspectors... Cracker & our newest family member Ritz!  All is in order!  Space is limited for the 2017/2018 winter season so make your reservation soon! #Ready4Snow

Welcome Autumn! by Brad Schmidt

 Thank you Mother Nature!

Thank you Mother Nature!

Temperatures are dropping and Mother Nature has her paints out and is busy creating another masterpiece ... Fall!  Check out this gorgeous afternoon yesterday shared from our guest T from our meadow trailhead... simply breathtaking!  Crisp days, cold nights and ever changing skies make for great hiking, climbing, bouldering and mountain biking weather.  The lakes are glass and the last of sun filled days make the paddle boarding and kayaking Lake Wenatchee a treat!  Pack your bag and head over the next 6 weeks before winter arrives!   Looking forward to trekking with you... Love,  Millie Vanilli 

Renew your mind, spirit and body with a return to Nature... by Brad Schmidt

 Guests shared this amazing view at local Eight Mile Lake... come explore the Cascades and renew!

Guests shared this amazing view at local Eight Mile Lake... come explore the Cascades and renew!

"I remember a hundred lovely lakes, and recall the fragrant breath of pine and fir and cedar and poplar trees.  The trail has strung upon it, as upon a thread of silk, opalescent dawns and saffron sunsets.  It has given me blessed release from care and worry and the troubled thinking of our modern day.  it has been a return to the primitive and the peaceful.  Whenever the pressure of our complex city life thins my blood and benumbs my brain, I seek relief in the trail; and when I hear a coyote wailing to the yellow dawn, my cares fall from me - I am happy." - Hamlin Garland, February 1899 (!!!- yes 118 years ago "the city life" took a toll... the remedy, to return to Nature! Give it a try today!) 


Bailey Bear! by Brad Schmidt

 Bailey Bear!! 

Bailey Bear!! 

This season we have seen more bears on the mountain.  A kind spring guest just shared this great photo of a bear we have named "Bailey" she took when visiting in May.  With the heat of summer most bears are now down at the river on the valley floor, but a few are spotted on the trails each week usually eating wild berries or invading our fruit trees in the orchard!  No cheery jam this year as Bailey and his/her pals took more than their fair share!  Mom says I better get better on my barking duty so she can harvest the plums and apples to come! Will do as I love to chase all my forest friends to show them who is boss of the mountain!  Ha ha!! Love Millie 

Breakfast time! by Brad Schmidt

 Morning sunshine! 

Morning sunshine! 

Another beautiful morning!  The guests awoke to the fragrant aromas of Chef's delicious blueberry buttermilk pancakes with fresh berry syrup & country pork sausage this morning which also brought the teenager bear down from  the woods for his/her breakfast cleaning up the fallen seeds at the bird feeders.  Our guest Sheila captured this great photo of a resident hummer enjoying breakfast too!  Life is grand!   

Springtime! by Brad Schmidt

Spring on the mountain is officially here!  The wildflowers are spectacular this year!  The Cascades are still snowcapped, but with the expected heat wave this next week we are sure to see some drastic melting.  The river rafting will be fantastic!  Our hiking and mtn, biking trails are in great condition and everyone is anxious to get outside and play!  Check your calendar and see if you can carve a few days over in the sunshine to enjoy Mountain Home Lodge!  

Here is a delicious lemon pound cake you may want to try that we are enjoying this spring... great at breakfast or for dessert with fresh strawberries and whipped cream!  

Lemon Buttermilk Pound Cake from blog"Once Upon a Chef"- Jennifer Segal 

Best made a day ahead..


For the Cake

        3 c all purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off with a knife, plus more for the pan

        1/2 teaspoon baking soda

        1/2 teaspoon salt

        2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened

        2-1/4 cups granulated sugar

        3 large eggs

        1 cup buttermilk (low fat is fine)

        2 Tbsp grated lemon zest, packed (note: you'll need 4-5 large lemons for the entire recipe)

        2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

For the Syrup

        1/3 cup water

        1/3 cup granulated sugar

        2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

For the Glaze

        1 cup confectioners' sugar

        2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

        1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, packed

        1 teaspoon unsalted butter, melted


        Preheat the oven to 325°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Spray a 10-inch bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray and dust with flour.

n a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

        In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or beaters), cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then beat in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again.

        In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, lemon zest and lemon juice.

        With the mixer on low speed, beat in one-quarter of the flour mixture, then one-third of the buttermilk mixture. Beat in another quarter of the flour, then another third of the milk mixture. Repeat with another quarter of the flour and the remaining milk mixture. Finally, beat in the remaining flour mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, and give a quick mix to make sure all of the ingredients are well incorporated.

        Spoon the thick batter into the prepared bundt pan and smooth with a rubber spatula. Bake for 1 hour and 5 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.

        Cool the cake in the pan for ten minutes on a rack.

        Meanwhile, make the syrup. Combine the water and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice.

        Invert the warm cake onto a rack. Slip a large piece of parchment paper or aluminum foil under the rack to catch all the drips from the syrup and glaze. Gradually brush the hot syrup over the cake, letting it soak in (a little syrup will drip off, but try not to rush so that most of it is absorbed). Allow the cake to cool completely, about one hour.

        When the cake is cool, make the glaze. Combine the confectioners' sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and melted butter in a medium bowl, mixing with a fork until smooth. Add more confectioners' sugar or lemon juice as necessary to make a thick but pourable glaze (it should be the consistency of thick honey). Spoon the glaze over the top of the cake, letting it drizzle down the sides.