About UsLearn more about our lodge
Lillaskog is the life dream of Bill Charlson, a retired park ranger and administrator. In 1999, a forest fire on Pilot Ridge ravaged the area. The following winter the Charlson family bought the acreage that became Lillaskog. Borrowing from the family’s Swedish ancestry, the name Lillaskog is Swedish for “Little Forest”.
After the Pilot Fire, the land was salvage logged. Bill then replanted twenty thousand baby trees, so the name “little forest” seemed quite suitable.
Bill also bought a small sawmill and began drawing up plans to build his dream Lodge. All of the dimension lumber, main support logs, framing and floors are milled from timber that came from the property. Work halted only briefly when in 2002, Bill was unexpectedly diagnosed with cancer. After undergoing extensive surgery and cancer treatments, Bill made a miraculous recovery and went back to work on the Lodge. After six years of hard work, Bill opened Lillaskog Lodge as a Bed & Breakfast welcoming guests from all around the world.
When the Rim Fire started in August 2013, staff and guests had to flee the raging fire. The firefighters made a special effort to save the Lodge, as Bill has been such a good steward of the surrounding forest. The Lodge was saved and opened up for the firefighters battling the blaze as a place to shower, eat and get a few hours of sleep. It also served as a command post during the fire.
The aftermath of the fire was devastating. Bill lost 30 acres of 14 year old trees and 5 acres of market size timber.
After the early March storms in 2014, Bill started planting 1700 tree seedlings and finished the work on April 5th. Bill also installed 1 ½ miles of drip tubing to water over a 30 acre area.
Bill is currently logging and milling the salvaged lumber with plans for new construction. He plans to build 2 or 3 smaller cabins for the Charlson family and to rent out to guests.
In January 2014, the Lodge reopened for guests to enjoy while exploring Yosemite National Park. Although it no longer operates as a Bed & Breakfast, the Lodge is now available for families to gather and explore Yosemite. Lillaskog also hosts Events, such as, Weddings, Corporate & Spiritual Retreats and Reunions.