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Monday, July 7, 2008

Tanya

Great Wolf Lodge, Grand Mound WA, REVIEW

So this weekend we went to the Great Wolf Lodge in Grand Mound, WA for the weekend! First let me say prices may vary from lodge to lodge and may change at any time. I don't think this lodges website does it justice!

First let me tell you you can arrive your first day at 1pm to start using the water park even though you may not be able to get into your room until 4pm. AND you can stay until closing (10PM) on your check out day.

Second, BRING a beach towel. Yes they provide towels in the room and at the water park but they do not like the water park towels to leave the water park and they are not very big. That way you will have something to walk back to your room in that is big enough to wrap around you. They do sell them there for about $15.

I recommend packing food for breakfast and lunch if you can. It will save you some money. There are reasonably large fridges in your room, about 3 foot high. We ate dinner the two nights we were there at the Loose Moose Cottage. They have a dinner buffet for $17.95 for adults, $7.95 for children 4-not sure of the age, and three and under are free! They have a GREAT variety of food from seafood, salad, Chinese food, children friendly food, desserts galore, steaks, prime rib, and pork chops. This is a great price for such a selection, and your soft drinks, juice and milk are included.

As to the rooms, there are several to choose from. We stayed in the Kids Cabin. There were three beds, one bunk in the "children's" room, and a queen bed and a full pull out sofa. The kids have their own TV as well as do the adults. You can of course put parental controls on the kids TV. I do recommend bringing ear plugs. For some reasons the doors SLAM shut. It really only stops from about midnight to 8AM. There is a very convenient safe in your room that we used A LOT.

Wrist bands are issued when you check-in. Be careful with these. First they are your room key. Secondly if you so choose they can also be used to CHARGE things in your room, pretty much EVERYTHING in the lodge but the vending machines. I heard a story of a lady whose son racked up a $600 bill in the arcade on a wrist band. Let me say it, YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!!

So what is there to do at the Great Wolf Lodge?

Let's start with the water park itself.

In the water park there are several pools as well as water slides. Howlin' Tornado, is the large "cone slide" you see from the out side has a requirement of 48" tall. Warning there is a 5'-6' "drop" in the middle of this slide, don't wear glasses. You use and inter tube for this slide but you don't have to carry them up the stairs and can ride up to four people at a time. There is also the some "smaller" slides under the Howlin' tornado that you only have to be 42" to go down and you have to carry our inter tube up the stairs to and can ride up to two people at a time.

There are two slides at Fort Mackenzie, and interactive tree house, Carson could not get enough of these slides. They are great and bigger kid friendly. Warning about the tree house, there is a large bucket on top that dumps over 1,000 gallons of water every so often, there is a bell that you will hear as a warning. Carson did not like this so I would just stand over him when it dumped if we were on the fort. You can also stand at the bottom of the fort and get the full dump but I do not recommend this for smaller children. No matter where you walk in this tree house more than likely there is someone above you going to dump a bucket of water or pull a rope that will drench you. I recommend pulling and dumping anything you can find!

A more toddler friendly pool would be the Bear Track Landing or as Carson called it the "walking" pool. There are a couple very small water slides in here and tons of water play toys.

There is a hot tub the goes indoors and outdoors.

There is also a nice sized wave pool. I recommend using an inter tube as the current is VERY strong.

There is also one other smaller pool, don't know the name that the kids can play basket ball in as well as float on creature in the water.

The lodge does provide life vests but we bought our own just in case there were not enough. They also provide lockers but we left the valuables in the safe in the room.

Okay so other things to do:

Cub Club is educational and crafts for the kids. We paid $10 for Little Man to hear a story about frogs. They also made a frig mask, a terrarium, an origami frog. They got frog tattoos, frog stampings, and frog rubbings. I thought $10 was great for 1-hour of educational play.

Elements Spa and Scoops Spa - We did not get to enjoy the spa this go round but wanted to let you know it is there and normally priced for a resort.

Northern Lights Arcade: I think we paid $1 for 5 tokens. The kids get tickets for the games and can exchange tickets for prizes. This can get spendy but is still fun.

The GREAT Clock tower; Shows daily at 8am, 10am 8pm and 9pm

GR8 Space Teen Center: This place is GREAT for tweens and teens. during the day it is a family tech center, Wii, playstation, movies, magazines, music, Internet, etc. All for just $10 for your entire stay. At night this room turns into a dance club for all those over the age of 12. It is like a middle school dance. The girls dance, the boys sit and the parents take pics from outside.

Magiquest: No matter how old you are you will enjoy this one. You have to purchase a wand for $15 (there are more expensive ones) and $10 for the game itself. It is like a scavenger/treasure hunt over 5 floors of the lodge. (Oh yeah because of this I would not recommend saying on the first 5 floors). When you buy you get your wand and a book explaining all the quests. The book URGES you to use the stairs so PREPARE to climb, and climb, and climb! But it is worth HOURS if not DAYS of fun. It took us three days and we still did not complete them all! Your wand can also make creatures come alive throughout the first 5 floors and in the Loose Moose Cottage.

So there you have it. Once I get the film developed I will post some pics. Speaking of pics remember you are near the WATER, and no matter how you "think" you cannot get wet from weather you are, believe me you can! I brought disposable waterproof cameras and suggest you do the same.

Was it worth it? YES! My husband and son thought it was better than Disneyland. (I still LOVE Disneyland better). But if you were caught in the rain this weekend, I wasn't. That was nice. It is only a 45 minute drive and we are already planning our next trip there!

Tanya

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6 comments

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Anonymous
AUTHOR
July 8, 2008 at 8:20 AM delete

I am so glad you and your family had a great time. Thanks so much for chosing Great Wolf Lodge as your vacation destination!

Warm Regards,
Derrek Kinzel
General Manager, Great Wolf Lodge-Grand mound

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Anonymous
AUTHOR
April 27, 2009 at 1:28 AM delete

Thanks for all your information. We are considering a trip there with our daughter and her family. At TripAdvisor there are generally positive reviews, but some real bad ones.

My main concern would be cleanliness of the pools and rooms and also the amount of chlorine in the water.

If you get a chance - could you comment on these concerns. Thanks. A Fun Grandmother.

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Tanya
AUTHOR
April 28, 2009 at 9:31 AM delete

I had NO complaints about the cleanliness of the rooms or the resort. They were excellent! I also did not notice any significant chlorine in the water. My husband and I both have chlorine sensitivity and we had no problems being in there all day. We are so sure of cleanliness we are bringing Little Princess wtih us and she will be under 6 months old next time we go. I still can't wait to go back! I hear the second large slide is open now.

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Anonymous
AUTHOR
July 6, 2009 at 8:26 PM delete

I know when we were there (on President's Day Weekend 2009)we could put a money limit on the on the kids' wristbands so they couldn't go over their alloted amount. I'm thinking the kid that spent $600+ in the arcade didn't have a spending limit put on his wristband. We absolutely loved this place (kid's ages were 14, 13 and two 11 year olds).

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Anonymous
AUTHOR
December 22, 2009 at 11:45 AM delete

Thanks for your review. I plan taking my family to the lodge for 2 nights this week. My kids are 5 1/2 and 7 years old respectively. Should I bring a lifevest for them for use in the pool?

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Tanya
AUTHOR
December 22, 2009 at 11:51 AM delete

They have lifevests there. We brought our wn just in case they ran out. But they had plenty!

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