Here at Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge our environmental mission is to
operate our lodging business in a manner that is consistent
with our wilderness setting. We
provide visitors to the Kenai Peninsula region of Alaska with a lodging
option that is right in the heart of the Alaska wilderness, living with the
wilderness. More about our
environmental mission below but, for now, take a look at what others have to
say about very special Alaskan Wilderness Lodge.
Named the "Oscars of the Travel
Business" by the Wall Street Journal, Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge
is thrilled to be the first place winner of "Leading Green Resort in
the U.S." for 2009 and now a nominee for "Leading Green Resort in
This article is from "E" The Environmental Magazine. It was published a few
months after a visit to the lodge by staff writer Roddy Scheer.
GREEN LIVING: GOING GREEN
Lightly in Alaska
Living It Up in Sadie Cove
by Roddy Scheer
the skipper of the water taxi down-shifted, I could see my destination like
a welcoming beacon dead ahead. The Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge, only 10
miles as the crow flies from the fishing
village of Homer,
was worlds away from the rat race I was leaving behind for a week. As if to
signal that I was in the right place, a bald eagle with a six-foot wingspan
swooped down for a closer inspection of our boat as a trio of accommodating
hip-booted staffers off-loaded my luggage.
did owner Keith Iverson know back in 1973 when he plunked down his life
savings of $5,000 for the wild and undeveloped property alongside Sadie Cove
that the state would soon declare the 24,000 acres of vibrant coastline
surrounding his land as a wilderness area protected from development. After
going it alone for the first few years, Iverson realized that his little
piece of paradise could attract top dollar from visitors looking to get away
from the frenetic pace of city life. So in 1981 he opened his emerging
complex of buildings—each constructed from hand-milled local spruce lumber
and driftwood—to visitors as the Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge.
guests at the lodge ($300 per person per night in summer, $350 in winter,
including three meals) can enjoy all the amenities of home—including
electricity, hot showers and cold drinks—without dipping into any polluting
fossil fuel reserves. Power at the lodge is provided by an ingenious
hydroelectric system running off of the rushing creek bisecting the
property. Iverson says it is more reliable than the electricity grid, plus
he never gets an electricity bill. Meanwhile, the lodge’s clear drinking
water is filtered from a mountain spring also on the property.
its environmentally sensitive power and water supplies, the lodge does not
use any polluting fertilizers, preservatives or cleaning chemicals that
could foul the pristine waters of Sadie Cove. Also, the three R’s (reduce,
reuse, recycle) is a mantra for Iverson and his staff. “For example, we use
gallon-sized milk containers for our lettuce greenhouse planters, and when
the containers become so damaged by UV rays that they are no longer
practical, we bring them to town where they are recycled,” says Iverson.
ropes from fishing vessels are used for handrails, discarded PVC pipe from
Homer is split and used for rain gutters and small open boats that have
served out their days at sea are retired and used for raised garden beds.
Bald eagles are
in the welcoming party when you fly in to Sadie Cove.
has worked to ensure that his lodge meets the stringent environmental
standards of Green Globe 21, a program that monitors and certifies
sustainable operations in the tourism industry according to standards set at
1992’s Rio Earth Summit. Iverson’s property is the only wilderness lodge in
Alaska to be recognized by the state for its
recycling and reuse policies and practices.
because Iverson is an environmentalist doesn’t mean guests have to rough it.
Iverson’s wife Randi is a gourmet cook who delights guests not only with her
friendly charm but also with the tastiest halibut steaks this side of
heaven. The lodge provides hot breakfasts and dinners, and packs box lunches
for guests to take with them on various adventures including guided hikes,
kayaking excursions, fishing charters and even bear-viewing outings. And on
rainy days nothing beats browsing through the lodge’s impressive collection
of books on Alaskan culture and natural history.
Iverson is not busy catering to guests’ needs or doing maintenance on lodge
facilities, he kayaks over to nearby Little Tutka Bay, where he is
refurbishing Widgeon, an old World War II supply ship that ran cargo to the
Aleutian Islands. With a little help from area friends, Iverson towed,
landed and secured the vessel on a small parcel of land he had purchased.
Within two years he hopes to open it as a lower-cost resort—complete with
kitchen facilities, a music room and an indoor swimming pool—for up to eight
guests at a time.
boat will have modern communications as well as Internet, but we hope to
have an atmosphere of the 1940s where folks can come to relax,” says
Iverson. “They can do some peaceful reading, listen to some old records on
the 78 rpm record player, do some fishing, canoeing, hiking, wildlife
viewing or fishing, all in a unique and historic vessel.”
plans the refurbished Widgeon as an alternative energy showpiece, which,
judging by Sadie Cove, would be par for the course.
likes to get away from it all.
Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge
Green Globe 21
And the press has something to say about Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge too -
Overlooking the Wosnesenski flats and Alaska's Harding
(CSRwire) HOMER, AK - The Kenai Peninsula Borough has awarded Sadie Cove
Wilderness Lodge the coveted "Green Star Award". To earn this award, the
staff had to demonstrate their commitment to environmental responsibility by
recycling, reducing waste, and reducing energy use at their facility.
Even though recycling is somewhat of a challenge at the Lodge because of the
remote location, several materials are separated from their small waste
stream and either reused on site or taken across the bay to Homer for
recycling. Additionally, the Lodge is run completely on a non-polluting
alternative energy system of wind and hydro-power which supplies the entire
grounds with energy to spare. The lodge is, and will remain, off the grid
and is completely self-supporting.
Also, in 2005, Natural Home magazine declared Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge
one of the top 10 eco-destinations in North America along with the lodge at
Yosemite Park and others.
As promised at the top of this page, here is some more about this
Eco-Lodge's environmental policies
Cove Wilderness Lodge was custom built in the mid 1970's from driftwood that
was salvaged from the beaches of Kachemak Bay and milled by hand, piece by
piece, into lumber by owner/artist Keith Iverson. It was all put in place in
its natural state without preservatives, oils, or chemicals of any kind.
This organic architecture has created a one-of-a-kind lodge that blends
naturally into the surrounding environment. To retain the peaceful
atmosphere of the wilderness and diminish the impact of tourism on the place
in which we live, we purposely keep our lodge small and serve a small number
of overnight guests only. For the sum total of the guests that the lodge
serves on a yearly basis, counting the crew members over the course of a
summer and a caretaker for 12 months of the year, the lodge has a total
environmental impact of a year-round family of 5 or 6.
for the entire lodge is provided by an in-house hydroelectric system
operating from a swift mountain stream and all of our light fixtures use
compact fluorescent bulbs. We are pleased to be able to eliminate this need
for fossil fuels in our lives and our business and operate completely off
the "grid". We also rely entirely on our mountain stream for the lodge's
drinking water and grey water supplies.
Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge, we specialize in serving wild, ocean-run
seafood along with fresh produce, some of which is grown in our own garden.
We also accommodate any special dietary needs and are happy to provide
vegetarian and other meal options upon request. We have bins for aluminum,
tin, glass, and plastic containers at various locations around the lodge and
we transport all of these materials to the town of Homer for recycling.
buy most of our products in bulk to limit the amount of packaging. We
purchase paper products with a high post-consumer material content, and we
purchase non-toxic, biodegradable cleaning and laundry products. We have
recently started purchasing organic cotton linens and this will be a
standard practice as we replace our linen and towel supplies.
In summary, Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge provides visitors with the
opportunity to see and experience a truly remarkable part of the Alaskan
wilderness while staying in a comfortable and unique, self-sustaining lodge.
Sadie Cove Lodge is a full-service wilderness resort and we are proud to
share our lodge and our lifestyle with our guests and to be able to offer an
alternative and unique lodging option away from the chaos of everyday life.
We invite you to visit our hideaway by the sea in Kachemak Bay State Park,
From Natural Home Magazine:
Top 10 Eco-Destinations in North America
The Sadie Cove Wilderness Lodge runs on non-polluting wind
and hydro power. It is near Homer, Alaska, the 'bear viewing
capital of the world.
Sadie Cove Exterior
One of the rooms at Sadie Cove was created from a rescued
SADIE COVE WILDERNESS LODGE
Visitors take a water taxi to these off-the-grid coastal cabins that
accommodate eight guests in Kachemak Bay State Park. This elegantly
rustic place has a “leave no trace” philosophy, spectacular views, and
hiking, fishing, and wildlife watching.
How it’s built: Handmade cabins from milled local
Alternative energy: Hydroelectric power from a
stream; wind-power backup.
Conservation practices: Recycling, organic vegetable
Benefits to local ecosystems: Plans to get the area
declared a mountain goat sanctuary.
Educational programs: Nature walks to tidal flats
and alpine valleys.
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