A cozy hut on the edge of a meadow surrounded by 9,000-foot mountain peaks can be all yours in just a few hours, as long as you’re willing to do a little legwork to get there. Peter Grubb Hut, a Sierra Club hut system favorite, is accessible via 2.5 miles of snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. The trail begins with a steady climb up Castle Valley Road, a popular route for Truckee-based locals and their dogs. The last half-mile is off trail, marked by blue ribbons and triangles on trees in a mixed forest of lodgepole pine, white pine, and red fir trees. Follow the blue to the two-story hut sitting on the edge of Round Valley. The only high-rises here are Castle Peak and Basin Peak. Solar panels power the lighting for evening meals, card games and conversations. Your only other duties: making your meals from whatever food you packed in and keeping the hut tidy. Get Grubby!
Space in the Peter Grubb Hut fills quickly in November each year, but spots are still available. It sleeps 15. The cost is $15 per person, per night. For reservations, contact Clair Tappaan Lodge at 800-679-6775. The Sierra Club will not give route directions or provide GPS coordinates to the hut for liability reasons. Make sure you have a good map, compass, and at least one other person in your party.