Timberline Lodge

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The Shining, Stanley Kubrick’s masterful interpretation of Stephen King’s thrilling novel, centers around the archetypal haunted hotel. While the fictional Overlook Hotel was based on King’s experience at The Stanley Hotel in Colorado, Kubrick’s vision for the film took him to Oregon where the Timberline Lodge’s towering presence on Mount Hood provided the perfect establishing shots for the Overlook’s exterior. Kubrick was supposedly drawn to the lodge after seeing a haunting, moonlit photo of the hotel snapped by Oregon’s photographer laureate, Ray Atkeson, in the 1940s.



The Timberline Lodge has embraced their place in film history, even hosting special screenings of The Shining, complete with access to hotel grounds and a themed bar menu. Vintage photographs of the Lodge, posed as the Overlook Hotel, are also on display that provide credence to a popularly held fan theory regarding the supernatural nature of the fictional hotel. At the bottom of these photos is the signature “J. Torrance” along with the date “July ‘21”. Jack Torrance is the name of the fictional main character in the film, however the story takes place in the 1970s. Fans have speculated that these photographs are a direct reference to the final shot of the film, where a closeup of a party held on July 4, 1921 shows Jack among the attendees. This seems to suggest a cycle of reincarnation where the Overlook Hotel continuously draws its victims back in each life.


Guests are sure to want to return to the Timberline Lodge, luckily not because of a curse, but on account of the warm hospitality, stunning scenery, and world-class skiing.

This has been a Historic Hotels History Mystery
For more fun facts, trivia, and historic highlights, check out our History Mystery pages for Historic Hotels of America and Historic Hotels Worldwide. Subscribe to our newsletter below and follow us on social media to play along.

Question: Which historic hotel’s exterior shots were notably used in the 1980 movie The Shining?

  1. The Stanley Hotel
  2. Timberline Lodge
  3. The Overlook Hotel
  4. Hotel Colorado
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