A cabin in the Catalina Mountains - once a residence for forest rangers - could be available to the public for overnight rental by autumn.

The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comments on a plan to add the cabin to its "Rooms With a View" cabin rental program. The program offers rentals at about a dozen sites around Arizona, including in Madera Canyon south of Tucson.

"These cabins provide an opportunity for the public to connect with the forest in different ways," said Heidi Schewel, spokeswoman for the Forest Service. "It can broaden the experience they have."

The cabin in the Catalinas has five rooms and can accommodate four people. It's at an altitude of nearly 8,000 feet at the Palisades Administrative Site near Milepost 20 on the Catalina Highway.

The proposed rental fee would be $125 per night plus a service fee of $9 for online reservations or $10 for phone reservations.

Proposals for new fee sites are reviewed by a recreation resource advisory committee. The review is expected to take place this spring after public comments are considered. If the proposal is approved, people will be able to make reservations beginning this summer at www.reserveamerica.com or at 1-877-444-6777.

to comment on the plan

To offer comment or raise questions on the plan to include the cabin in the "Rooms With a View" rental program, contact Kathy Makansi at kmakansi@fs.fed.us or 760-2502 as soon as possible.

A decision on the proposal is expected this spring.

Contact Doug Kreutz at dkreutz@azstarnet.com or at 573-4192.