Stay in the world’s biggest beagle
(Dog Bark Park Inn)
Though it may only look like a roadside attraction, the giant beagle creation off Highway 95 in Cottonwood, Idaho is actually a working bed and breakfast.
Chainsaw artists turned B&B proprietors Frances Conklin and Dennis Sullivan earned enough by selling more miniature dog carvings to construct the 30-foot Dog Bark Park Inn in 1997 and have been showing guests a doggone good time since.
Why a beagle? “It was the first breed of dog Dennis started carving 28 years ago and it remains a best-seller all this time,” said Conklin. “Plus, it is a politically correct breed since there are no horror stories about it!”
Known unofficially as Sweet Willy, the big dog sleeps four, with a queen bed in the main section and two twin futons in the head, all appropriately appointed with canine-inspired furnishings. The beagle is a bargain too: The whole pup can be rented out for $92 per night for two people and includes a breakfast of homemade granola and pastries. Two-legged guests cost an extra $8 each, and four-legged ones run up to an additional $10.
While you are in the northern Idaho area, jetboat down the Hells Canyon River Gorge, the deepest river gorge in North America, see wolves up close at the Wolf Education and Research Center or visit the Historical Museum at the Monastery of St Gertrude, featuring artifacts from the local Nez Perce tribe and a rich exhibit on the history of Chinese gold-mining immigrants to the region.
If you don’t want to stray far from the Dog Bark Park Inn, stroll the grounds to see other chainsaw-carved creations like a 12-ft-tall red fire hydrant, a walk-in retro coffee pot and a giant toaster with removable toast. To commemorate your trip, take home a 10- or 16-inch chainsaw-carved beagle (or other breed of your choosing) at Conklin and Sullivan’s adjacent gift shop.