For centuries the land upon which Fort Lewis is situated has provided for its inhabitants. The Shawnee cleared these fields and regarded them as sacred hunting grounds. Early settlers introduced domestic livestock and learned to cultivate the foothills. Today, we continue to care for this land and strive to uphold sustainable farming practices that will allow it to flourish for generations to come.
At our farmstead we grow fresh produce, keep chickens for eggs & raise pigs for meat – all endeavors help us in supplying the best possible ingredients for our kitchen. But the main focus of our farmland is our cattle operation. We run a cow-calf herd, which means we keep a herd of mother cows that produce a weaning age calf of some 500-600 pounds each year. We then sell these calves to other producers who take them on to finish weights through stocker and feeder programs.
With sustainability as a focus, we embrace rotational grazing with long rest periods and adjusted calving dates to better align livestock needs with forage quality peaks. Through fencing, we’ve excluded livestock from all waterways to protect the water quality of our free flowing streams and rivers. We’ve also invested in building fertility levels and are continually fighting the encroachment of invasive plant species.
In the end, we consider ourselves stewards of this land and love working with, and what really is living with, our cows and bulls. Our vision: a regenerative farming mindset. We want to return carbon and other missing elements to the soil, support biological diversity, restore a natural, self-supporting system, and produce a sustainable, nutritious, and tasty beef product.
“It’s my Shangri-la, a unique place that I recommend enthusiastically. My dictionary defines Shangri-la as a remote, idyllic hideaway where life approaches perfection. For me, that’s Fort Lewis Lodge.” -Jim Yenckel | Travel editor Washington Post
“This western-size spread has fly-fishing, mountain biking, and hiking–less than four hours from Washington, D.C.” -Eddie Nickens | Men’s Journal
“…the Fort Lewis Lodge is a true escape, an idyllic hideaway where all there is to do is relax and enjoy the natural beauty of this pristine 3,200 acres of meadows, forest and rivers amid the Allegheny Mountains.” -Andie Gibson | SmithMountainLaker.com
“Fort Lewis Lodge is one of those rare and wonderful places that celebrates life’s simple pleasures.” -Cassandra VanHooser | Southern Living
“When was the last time you had 3,000 acres of Virginia’s finest in our own backyard?” -Eddie Nickens | Washingtonian
“Furnished with country-style antiques and quilts, the Lodge’s 19 rooms look bright and cheery. On my visits I spend a lot of time bobbing around in the old fashioned swimming hole, carved at the base of a towering rock wall.” -Jim Yenckel | Budget Travel
“We didn’t bring much – old bathing suits, sensible shoes, tons to read and expand-waist pants to accommodate fresh-from-the-garden cooking. Eating is a recreational activity here. Believe me.” – Krys Stefansky | Travel Editor, Virginian Pilot
“A country inn for guests seeking the outdoors and an opportunity for some ‘natural’ relaxation, hiking, fishing , mountain biking and swimming.” -Matt Sampson | Virginia Wildlife
“Hiking boots, biking shoes, paddleing sandals, chest-waders – if you visit Virginia’s Fort Lewis Lodge, your biggest problems might be packing all the footgear you’ll need.” -Eddie Nickens | Washingtonian