5 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms, Sleeps 13 (possibly 14) plus baby!
Richard and Marilyn Wheeler
- english, spanish
About Richard and Marilyn Wheeler
When Marilyn and I are not in Colorado at our dream-come-true vacation Chalet, nor in bonnie Scotland visiting my wife’s cousins, you'll likely find us at our home in the peaceful Texas hill country. We have been happily married for 45 years (and counting), and having just recently retired from the pastorate (after 35 plus years in Christian ministry), we now enjoy being whole-hearted grandparents to our nine (and counting!) incredible grandchildren. You could say this all started through the eyes of a child, a child's dream turned to prayer. When I was a young lad back in the ’50’s and living in Santa Monica, California (where both my wife and I were raised), I got bit by the Davy Crockett (all-things-frontier) “bug!” Coupled with my fondest childhood memories of living for a short while at my (step) Great-Uncle Jack's hand-built cabin in Lockwood Valley, California, I decided then and there that my long-term goal was to build a log home of my own. And by the grace of God, nearly 50 years later, that prayer came to pass. You will have the joy of sharing in this dream come true when you come and stay at the Chalet, which overlooks the majestic Collegiate Peaks – all 3 peeks over 14,000 ft. and directly in front of the Chalet. I’m a rugged outdoors man by nature, and before serving as pastor full-time, I traveled over 2 million miles over the course of 35+ years with Mantle Ministries as historian/evangelist and known by my full name, Richard "Little Bear" Wheeler. You will see those faith-based historical touches all over the Chalet, making the place a delight and amazement, which we hope you will immediately sense as an awesome experience. Young and old alike will find it hard to leave this little "taste of heaven" in the Rockies.
Richard and Marilyn Wheeler purchased this Chalet in 2003
Why Richard and Marilyn Wheeler chose Buena Vista
When deciding where to build our Chalet, I headed to Colorado in search of property anywhere from Trinidad in the south, to Leadville in the north central part of the state, to find just the right place to "stake a claim." Little did I know then, but that the Lord led me to a once-famous 1889 gold mine, "THE NELLIE BLY," named after a ground-breaking 19th century female investigative reporter. This 10-acre piece of property (the legal size of most mining claims), is surrounded by Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land and national forest, yet is only 5 miles east of the historic town of Buena Vista off Highway 24. Because of a large chunk of “free-gold” that was mined out of this very property in 1889, the Nellie Bly was the very mine that brought the miners from all over the world to seek gold in the Midland Hills surrounding the Chalet. Although no longer full of its “gold luster,” by walking the property, you will be standing on the actual ground that miners worked over a 100 years ago. If you're interested in the history of the area, you can visit the 1890’s Buena Vista Courthouse, now a humble museum with the history of the railroad and area mining.
What makes this Chalet unique
When first acquiring the land and trying to decide where to build our Chalet, I recall kneeling on the very spot where the Chalet is standing today and asking the Lord to direct the building site. When I finished praying and opened my eyes, I was struck with the breathtaking view, and felt the Lord’s prompting to erect the dwelling right on the same spot, and Marilyn wholeheartedly agreed. As an outdoors man, I wanted the sense of the wilderness, yet my wife prefers the more refined conveniences of town life. Providentially, this property provides both! Every wild-at-heart man's dream can be fulfilled only minutes away – mountain biking, hiking, whitewater rafting, fishing, (and more...), while gracious women, like my wife, can enjoy that sort of thing, but also the "creature comforts" of a short 5-mile drive into town for a candlelight dinner or uptown shopping in the pedestrian-friendly village of South Main by the Arkansas River. There is hardly anything quite like this Chalet in the area with the mixture and easy access to both. We pray you, too, will be overwhelmed by the beauty and diversity of the Buena Vista Valley and mountains that stretch as far as the eye can see.
Check-in: 3:00 pm
Check-out: 10:00 am
NO SMOKING (of any kind, of any substance) Policy.
We welcome children and responsible supervision.
Minimum age of primary renter:21
Max guests:14 (sleeps up to 13 adults)
Campfire Use: TO RULE OUT FIRE BAN, you must call County Sheriff Dept. Adult supervision required. (See complete policy on Rental Agreement)
Canoe Use: FOR LAKE USE ONLY! Use at your own risk; adult supervision at all times & lifejackets required. (See complete policy on Rental Agreement)
*No ATVs or dirt bikes are allowed to be driven on the Chalet property or access road, except to trailer. (See complete policy on Rental Agreement)
100% refund if cancelled at least 30 days before arrival date. 50% refund if cancelled at least 14 days before arrival date.
View alone worth it
Pictures can't convey they beauty of this location and of the cabin. The view is breathtaking and you can see for miles. The mountain range across the valley is especially beautiful in the morning and I recommend getting up to watch the sunrise at least once during your stay. The cabin is very private and you can't see any other homes other than way down in the valley miles away.
We had fun reading about the history of this cabin as the owners have written a coffee table book that details how this cabin came to be. It is clear this property is near and dear to them.
Thank you for capturing the essence of this one-of-a-kind hilltop view! We can almost picture we are there by your vibrant description! We hope others will catch the vision, and most of all, that you'll be back! ~Most sincerely, Marilyn & Richard ~ of the Nellie Bly Chalet
BEST home we've EVER stayed in!
Thank you, Sara! Your family and guests were simply delightful to host and we pray you'll be back in the very near future! ~Blessings always, Richard & Marilyn
This is our favorite place to stay. Richard and Marilyn are amazing property owners.
This is a beautiful place and our boys beg to come to this cabin every year. It is always clean beautiful and feels like our 2nd home. Thank you Richard and Marilyn for building such an amazing place!
Thank you all so much for your family loving our place, a refuge amidst the pressures of life, and place of refreshment is what we designed the Nellie Bly Chalet to be. You have been one of our most faithful guest over the years and we thank the Lord for you.
Nellie Bly Chalet is a beautiful, fully-equipped property with a spectacular remote setting. The owners provide excellent instructions for getting there and for using the features of the chalet. Those wishing to prepare meals will find virtually everything that's needed. Watching the sun set across the Arkansas River Valley from the balcony is an added treat.
Thank you kindly! We so appreciate your fabulous review! And thank you for your extra-special thoughtfulness in gifting the Chalet with those splendid culinary accoutrements for the next gourmet chef. Bon appetit! :)
We had a lovely and relaxing stay! Thank you!
We couldn't ask for a more positive, to-the-point, right-on review! Thank you, and hope you'll be back. :)
Best equipped cabin we have stayed at. All necessary items were included. Beautiful views and privacy.
Thank you, Durwin, for your complimentary review! It was a delight getting to host your family at the Chalet. We do hope you'll be back for you are wholeheartedly welcome anytime.
For nearby attractions, it is best to do a search online and type in ‘WHAT TO DO IN BUENA VISTA COLORADO” and you will get more then time will allow as a tourist. But here are some of our favorites:
-Next to Buena Vista is the developing (kayak) village of South Main, which is a nice place for an evening stroll near the river & summer concerts.
-For white water rafting, we've gone with Noah's Ark. We've been told they have a good reputation and excellent guides.
-Our favorite casual dining (with the best wholesome food) is Simple Eatery on Main St. The locals love it, too! Quincy's is our choice for a bargain steak dinner, and Lorenzo's is the best Mexican restaurant in town.
-The best fudge can be found at Stedman's Soda located inside the downtown BV Shell Station on US Hwy 24 (not to be confused with the Johnson Village Shell Station).
-We are Gold Rush history buffs, so we enjoy the St. Elmo ghost town near Mt. Princeton; the National Mining Hall of Fame in Leadville; "South Park City" reconstructed mining town in Fairplay; and the Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine Tour in Cripple Creek, if you are up to a day trip.
-The Chalet is close to 2 great ski resorts, Monarch 40 miles to the south near Salida, and Cooper (Ski Cooper) 45 miles to the north near Leadville.