Birdsong Pony Retreat Sleeps 4

House - Entire home/apt · Pierce Dr, Oakhurst, CA 93644, United States

Birdsong Creek Pony Retreat is a cozy, affordable large bedroom and small eating area with kitchenette (not full-sized). Guests tell us how they love our friendly horses, goats, cats, dogs & chickens. Shared wall with main home, private apt & entry.

Your host, Lori
86 Reviews
Response rate: 100%
Response time: within a few hours

Birdsong Creek Pony Retreat is a cozy, affordable large bedroom and small eating area with kitchenette (not full-sized). Guests tell us how they love our friendly horses, goats, cats, dogs & chickens. Shared wall with main home, private apt & entry.

The Space

Birdsong Creek Pony Retreat is a family-friendly, way to visit the Sierras and have your fill of mountain life in a completely private apartment that shares walls with our main house. Come pet our two ponies, visit with our new filly (baby girl horse), gather chicken eggs, or splash in the seasonal creek and catch tadpoles. This large bedroom has a private entrance, attached bath, kitchenette with toaster oven and coffee maker, WiFi access (very reliable but not 100%- we are in the mountains!), Netflix, a queen bed and full-sized futon. Relax on the patio, bordering the back end of the agricultural department at Yosemite High School, and walk onto campus to enjoy their gigantic pool with great kiddie area. Just a mile from the closest grocery store, feel far enough away to experience peace, but close enough to town to quickly pick up something you forgot at home. We have two outdoor dogs that occasionally bark to protect our animals. We pay close attention to them. They are a couple hundred feet from your room, and you have double-paned glass doors.
Bass Lake was voted Best Lake by Sunset Magazine, and is down the road about 6 or 7 minutes. You can rent a boat to fish or wakeboard, swim in the warm water, or make sand castles on the plentiful beaches. The southern entrance to Yosemite National Park is about 25 minutes away. Yosemite is a premier destination for rock climbers, and has spectacular waterfalls. It boasts lots of opportunities for families to get involved with rafting, nature programs and group campfires.
Birdsong Creek Pony Retreat is located on a safe dead-end street, and kids can jump across the creek to a well-maintained walking path. We hope to see you around here soon!

Guest Access

Guests access their private apt and a shared backyard. The deck off the main home and side by the garage is private.

Interaction with Guests

We try to greet guests as they arrive, however sometimes schedules do not allow. We have a lock box out for those times when were are not here upon arrival (or if arrival is very late.) We are pretty good at gauging if guests want space or would like interaction, but the best way to make sure you're happy is for you to communicate with us. We don't want to be seen as taking up your private time, and we also want to be available to answer questions in person, text, email or phone to help you make the most of your stay. Our children LOVE playing with other children, but they are also told they are to be invited to play so they don't inadvertently interfere with family time. Our children are instructed they are NEVER allowed in a guest's room, even if your child asks them to come inside and play, so please have your children play outdoors with our children if they wish. We try to be available if guests want to interact with the animals, again if schedules allow since sometimes guests can't easily predict how long they will stay at the park. Petting, brushing is all welcome, feeding the animals owners need to be with you.We ask all guests to enforce that our animals will only be touched in a gentle, loving manner. We don't chase our chickens, don't play rough with our dogs, don't allow pulling of ears etc. and because of it we have nicely behaved, loving animals. We try really hard to be approachable, and respectful of your space.

Other Things to Note

Please do not book our room if any of the guests are allergic to cats. We ask kindly that our guests do not leave the door open, (we are in the mountains and there are wild animals here, sometimes mosquitoes depending on the time of year.) Occasionally we have a guest who forgets and does, and cats have (twice over the last year) gone inside the room as result. Or they find mosquitoes in the room (seasonal and time dependent, and can be an issue for next night's guests as well.) We have had guests request that we vacuum under the bed and wash all curtains and decorative pillows before their arrival because a member in their party is allergic to cats, and unfortunately we find we are unable to accommodate this request. We strongly discourage our lovely cats from being inside the room, and guests' understanding of that will help us greatly. If guests would like to love on the cats outside, we know what that's like since we are animal lovers too, and we genuinely appreciate your kindness towards our pets. Please consider we live where there are owls hooting, coyotes howling, creeks babbling, and it is most important to us that you have a very comfortable night's sleep which is why I mention it. We provide ear plugs for those who are not used to mountain life nighttime noises, though I think only one guest used them ever, and that was when we had a momma barn owl hooting to her babies last year (aw!!!)

Room type: Entire home/apt
Accommodates: 4
Bedrooms: 1
Beds: 2
Extra people: $10 / night after 2 guests
Weekly Price: $540 /week
Security Deposit: $100
Cleaning Fee: $30
Check In: 12:00 PM (noon)
Check Out: 12:00 PM (noon)
Cancellation: Moderate
Pet Owner: Dog(s), Cat(s), and Other pet(s)
Overall Guest Satisfaction
Check In
  • Lori and her family were wonderful and helpful hosts. We had a very nice experience with them.

    July 2014
  • We thoroughly enjoyed our stay with Jay and Lori. The room, kitchenette and ensuite are everything you will need! We highly recommend staying here and using it as a base to visit Yosemite and the surrounding area, we only wish we had more time.

    July 2014
  • In regards to any of the complaints I may have had, the host was very open to resolving any of our issues and the communication between us was easy and open.

    July 2014
  • We've really enjoyed our stay at the Birdsong pony retreat. We felt very welcome! The appartment came with a lot of privacy, it was very quite at night and we liked having a kitchen to cook our own meal! Also it was a great place to visit Yosemite NP from!

    June 2014
  • Lori and Jay's place was cozy and comfortable. We had only a brief stay but everything was exactly as described and the ponies in the backyard add to the charm of the place.

    June 2014
  • I actually planned my family vacation around the availability of Lori's listing because it seemed like such a fun place to visit Yosemite from and had lots of positive feedback. So when Lori said I would need to take another room to accommodate everyone in my party and when there was a misunderstanding about how many nights we would all stay when her son was in the hospital, I was happy to accommodate those last-minute changes because my daughter was really looking forward to staying with the horses and goats, and Lori had promised her a pony ride.
    But when my husband ended up having to be hospitalized on our vacation and we needed to cancel one of the rooms, Lori's response was something like, sorry, but too bad. Even though Airbnb allows for last-minute cancellations under extreme circumstances. I was finally able to negotiate a one-night cancellation for the first night with Lori, hoping that my husband might be released for us to join our party the next day, which is luckily what happened, but then I felt rather unwelcome the rest of the time. Every time I tried to talk to Lori she was too busy to talk, she was unsure of her schedule when I asked about my daughter's pony ride, and she sent family members out to ask my children not to play in certain parts of the yard several times when I had chosen the place as kid-friendly.
    The last day, I bought soap from her daughter, and Lori told me that my daughter couldn't have a pony ride because she had already given me such a great discount on the rooms. And then she produced an itemized hand-written receipt! That is not the kind of interaction I'm looking for on airbnb.
    So, the rooms are nice, the kids are nice, but don't fall for the free pony ride promises because "this-is-a-business."

    June 2014
    Response from Lori:

    This guest contacted us a few hours before check-in to say
    she would not be coming or paying for two nights. She preferred to stay in the
    town before us since she was concerned her husband might have to get a
    treatment, which he could have received at the hospital we use. I graciously
    didn’t charge (that reads “sorry, too bad” in the guests’ review.) As she
    mentioned, my son was hospitalized too, though in his case it was serious, so
    for her to say I was not caring or welcoming is perplexing. A half hour phone conversation,
    many emails and messages and members of my family spending time with them proves
    we did care. Thankfully, we have not had to deal with a situation like this
    ever before in our wonderful experience here on airbnb. This guest asked us to
    do business off airbnb. She did not send a security check or payment for the
    second room, but wanted to pay cash. She tried to book a night showing up as unavailable.
    I sent her the link for an available listing for that night. Her party was
    asked to pay $105, clearly heard the amount twice, and handed over $100, asking
    for the remaining $5 was awkward. She asked to pay cash nightly instead upfront
    as agreed so her in-laws would be comfortable. I complied. She tried to book
    seven people in a room for four, it clearly says four people in the room. She
    accepted a discount of $75 for the second room without gratitude (in addition
    to the no-show night's no charge). My kids politely told her kids they were not
    allowed to play in an area of our yard. They did not comply. The guest asked me
    at 8:55am for her "free" pony ride, I was running out the door for an
    appt. at 9:00am. I offered the ride to the guest, as a condolence for her
    husband’s health, while repeating our no-show policies. At the time the free
    pony ride was mentioned, I thought it was understood she would be paying for
    her rooms. She refused to pay. I most certainly did not say I wouldn’t give her
    a pony ride “because I gave her too many discounts.” I told her I would have
    happily given her a free pony ride if she had paid for her room as promised, it
    was $25 a half hour. At some point, regardless of how nice we want to be, we
    have to uphold our rules. I gave a note showing the money I had gifted because
    most guests receiving such a large amount of kindness would have said, “Thank
    you,” so I wondered if she was not aware of how much she had been given. We
    love being hosts. We offer our room for free to battered women escaping abuse. We
    don’t post big ads like hotels, so reviews are very important, and we go out of
    our way to please guests.

    June 2014
  • The Birdsong Pony Retreat was perfect for a restful night's slumber after a long day in Yosemite. We were really thankful for the shower, the tv time, and the small fridge/freezer.

    June 2014
  • My wife and I had an excellent stay at the birdsong pony retreat. The room was quaint and private so it suited us perfectly for our trip to Yosemite. Lori was an excellent host and was very responsive to all our inquiries along with having a great recommendation for a restaurant around town.

    Also, I was worried about my cat allergy because Lori does own a few cats. Lori made sure the room was completely cat free for the month leading up to our stay, and ran an air purifier through the room for a few days before our arrival. I did not have a single issue with my allergies when I was there, in fact I did not notice them at all. I think unless you have the most severe of allergies and you let Lori know you should be fine staying in her place.

    June 2014
  • Lori and Jay were wonderful, accommodating, and gracious hosts - they truly tried to make our stay as comfortable as possible. The studio was clean and cozy and the animals were very friendly! The location is close to supermarkets and restaurants in town. My friends and I stayed here for our Yosemite trip to hike Half Dome. Although the drive to Yosemite Valley takes around 1.5 hrs, we thought it was worth it for the comfort and value.

    June 2014
  • My friends and I had a great experience staying at Birdsong Pony Retreat. We stayed there for one night before making our way into Yosemite. The location was very convenient for driving into either Yosemite or Sierra National Forest park. The bedroom was clean and had all the essential amenities such as wi-fi, fridge, breakfast table, coffee, and utensils. The 3 cats Lori and her husband were also super cute! Make sure to give them a belly rub when you're there!

    May 2014
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English, Español
Master's in Education University of Laverne
homeschool mom
I am a elementary school teacher turned homeschool mom who loves hanging out with kids. My husband is very much into technology and works for Children's Hospital. Our three children love making new friends, and are very imaginative playmates!
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