History of River Meadows
The following historical account has been provided by Pat DeBusman, one of the first residents of River Meadows:
Stage Stop Meadows was an actual stop along the route from Klamath Falls to The Dalles, also known as Huntington Road.
Built in the early 1900’s, this cabin was used as a small lodge where people and horses could rest before continuing on their journey. Meals were cooked and overnight accommodations were available (click on the picture to enlarge it).
There are remnants of river crossings up river from the General Patch bridge, in the River Forest subdivision, and downstream in the area of Lava lands park. The River road was made by cutting poles and laying them crossways to the roadbed to keep from sinking in the mud. Portions of this old roadway are still visible and the road could be followed about two miles through the woods west of the Lava lands Visitor Center, through the Sunriver development to the east of Harper Bridge.
In March 1921, the trip from Klamath Falls to Bend took 24 hours and there were three tollgates. Road taxes were 12.5 cents for each sheep or hog, 50 cents each horse, mule or donkey, and a two wheeled vehicle charge was $2.00. No toll was charged for footmen, or persons going to or from a funeral, election or church. Those apprehended for “going around the tollgate” were fined three times the toll charge. In 1925 tolls were terminated since it was thought they harmed the tourist business.
Stage Stop Meadows probably closed as a stage stop in the mid 1920’s. When the River Meadows development was started, the cabin was used by the caretaker until it burned to the ground in 1980.
There are remnants of the Stage Stop along the river and in the trees along the culvert where wire and nails are still in the trees. Horseshoes and long spikes have been found in the area as well.