My wife and I decided to do something different for an anniversary. It wasn’t a stay at some expensive hotel, dinner with a glass of champagne, or a movie with popcorn. We’ve done all of those over the years! Instead, we booked a zip & stay vacation.

I’d heard some good things about Cedar Mountain Lodge, so I decided to check them out. Lo and behold, they had a zip-and-stay package that sounded like a lot of fun. It also sounded romantic enough for an anniversary. Add a bottle of champagne and a red rose, she’s got to love it! Therefore, I booked a zip line tour and an overnight stay in a tree house.

Introduction to Cedar Mountain Lodge

cedar mountain lodge

Cedar Mountain Lodge was located on 550 acres of rolling countryside just outside the small town of Scurry. About 30 minutes southeast of Dallas, it sat on a working wildlife ranch. Cedar trees, sprawling mesquite trees, open meadows, several ponds, and lots of wildlife from birds to bobcats made it gorgeous.

The Lodge was owned by a great couple named Art and Cheryl. They were best known for their Texas hospitality and a dedication to making sure you have an enjoyable stay at their lodge.

With a huge peaked foyer, the lodge was impressive if not peaceful and scenic. It could best be described as “rustic elegance”. Features included huge cedar beams and planking, soft leather couches, luxury linens, nice appointments, colorful landscaping, and more. It was built from local Texas red cedar trees that were milled onsite.

Cedar Mountain Lodge specialized in catering to corporate events, reunions and socials, and medium-sized weddings.

The Zip & Stay Package

bridge from platform to tree house

We signed up for the Zip & Stay package, which included a zip line tour and an overnight stay in the Eagle’s Nest, a tree house perched in a canopy of large oaks and pecan trees about 20′ off the ground.

The Zip & Stay included a couple of options. We could complete the 4000′ zip line course and then head over to the tree house for the evening, or we could zip half of the zip line course, stop mid-way, and walk across a swinging bridge from one of the zip line platforms to the tree house. After that, we’d continue to zip the next morning by walking across the bridge to the platform, hooking onto the zip, and flying through the trees for the rest of the zip line tour.

We decided to zip first, then head out to dinner, and come back for a sunset ATV tour of the ranch with Art and Cheryl.

They recommended Carrera’s Mexican Cuisine in Kaufman for margaritas and a good Mexican dinner. It’s a hole-in-the-wall restaurant, but we really enjoyed the great margaritas, delicious Mexican food (the Salmon steamed in foil with spices and veggies was delicious), and very friendly service. With full bellies, we headed back to Cedar Mountain Lodge and jumped into an ATV for a tour of the ranch at dusk.

What beautiful property with several small lakes, lots of wildlife, dense forests, ponds, streams, and open meadows.

beautiful sunset at cedar mountain lodge
dusk atv tour at cedar mountain lodge
deer checking us out on atv tour

The Zip Line Tour at Cedar Mountain Lodge

The zip line tour took about 2 hours. We zipped through the trees from platform to platform on 11 different zip lines totaling more than 4,000 feet. Before starting the zip line tour, we got fitted into our zip line harness, put on some gloves and a hard hat, hooked onto a short zip line a few feet off the ground, and received a short lesson on how to zip. More importantly, we learned how to stop.

star of the zip line lesson
learning to zip line
learning how to stop

After the lesson, we climbed 36 feet to the top of the first platform. The guide hooked us onto the zip line and off we went. The guide on the platform we were heading to told us when to start braking so we didn’t slam into him. After safely arriving at the next platform, we waited for the rest of our group to zip to the platform, then we hooked onto the next line and flied to the next platform.

Cedar Mountain Lodge’s zip line tour consisted of 7 platforms and 11 zip lines ranging in length from 840 feet to 190 feet each and with speeds of up to 32 miles an hour. What a fun tour!

First platform for the zip lines at Cedar Mountain Lodge
zip line at cedar mountain lodge
zip line through the trees at cedar mountain lodge

The Eagle’s Nest

After our zip line tour, we walked to the Eagle’s Nest and ascended the 20-foot spiral staircase to our bedroom. The tree house was very well made with cedar plank walls, lots of windows, and some nice appointments. Plus, it included:

  • A soft and comfortable king bed with luxury linens
  • Heating and AC, but when it got cool, we opened the windows and enjoyed the sounds of nature
  • Cute bathroom with a shower
  • A TV with DVD, some movies, and CDs
  • A microwave, coffee maker, and a mini-fridge
  • Lots of choices for breakfast: milk, orange juice, water, breakfast bars, cereal, fruit, muffins, and more
  • And an owl who occasionally liked to sit on the rail of the porch and check out what was happening up in his trees!
bridge to the tree house

The Eagle’s Nest tree house had a cedar rail porch that went around three sides of the tree house. It’s hard to beat sitting in the cedar rocking chairs on the porch overlooking the small creek and towering pecan and oak trees while enjoying a cup of coffee and watching the sun rise. It was serene and peaceful with just the birds chirping and a couple of frogs croaking.

Now I know why birds build nests in trees. What a comfortable and unique way to spend an evening!

tree house at cedar mountain lodge
deck around the tree house
Comfortable bed  in the tree house at Cedar Mountain Lodge

We had a great time during our short stay at Cedar Mountain Lodge. The owners were friendly and service-oriented; the grounds and facilities were upscale, clean, and well-maintained; the Eagle’s Nest was a unique experience; and the zip line tour and ATV ride were fun!

Unfortunately, Cedar Mountain Lodge has closed operations.

Mike Sharp
Author: Mike Sharp

I have a passion for travel and outdoor activities, and now I'm enjoying retired life. I will continue my traveling, golfing, boating, and enjoying life all across the great state of Texas.

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