WILSON LAKE — Rex and Kathy Usher were looking for a place to make their home.
In particular, they wanted to be close to a lake.
Retired from their ranch and farm near Dalhart, Texas, the Ushers did a little bit of traveling around Kansas. The idea was to find a place between family in Nebraska and Texas. Near the top of a hill less than 10 miles north of Interstate 70 on Kansas Highway 232, and near the Russell and Lincoln county line, the Ushers found the place they were looking for. And yes, it was near a lake.
Overlooking Wilson Lake, the couple found a spot over the Hell Creek area.
“We looked at a couple lakes and this has been the best one by far,” Rex Usher said. “We saw this land and focused on it. It took us a little over a year to get it.”
It just so happened at the area they purchased, the Ushers had enough space to create something special — a small cabin community. In January, the Ushers officially opened Hell Creek Cabins with three completed spots. A fourth is recently completed, and there is an area where they could have up to three more. There also are two camper slots.
The Ushers have started to see the benefits of their location as a draw.
“Compared to cattle, this is going to be a piece of cake,” Kathy Usher said. “Like today, we don’t have to get out there. This is a little more of what we were thinking.”
While there have been hunters that have stayed, the cabins also have been used by families coming through for different tournaments around the area, and by those for those who just want to enjoy the lake area. The location being just outside the lake, those staying aren’t charged the lake fee.
“You see people get out (of their vehicles) and take pictures,” Kathy said of the view around the cabins. “It’s a really popular photo place.”
The cabins, which are around 500 square feet, include two bedrooms with a full bed in each. In one bedroom are twin bunk beds Rex built for each of the cabins. Like the structure itself, the floors are wood. Each cabin has a bathroom with a shower and a kitchen that includes a fridge and stove. Outside every one of them is a picnic table, grill and fire pit.
The Ushers have advertised the cabins by way of word of mouth, radio and flyers. They also have a Facebook page that has helped draw attention to their business.