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Aaron Cromer, Brenda Cromer, and Marla Harris have been the owners of Bighorn RV Park since they purchased the establishment in 2018. A wide range of units is currently available for visitors to reserve at the park, including 22 RV sites, 5 motel rooms, 3 cabins, 5 bunkhouses, and 3 tent sites. The property's location often draws those who take an interest in outdoor recreation, as a number of river activities can be undertaken on the Arkansas River, which neighbors Bighorn RV Park. Some of the activities that visitors frequently engage in are kayaking, canoeing, and river rafting, especially during Father's Day weekend when the river is "at its highest runoff," according to Brenda.
Bighorn RV Park occupies roughly ten acres in central Arkansas near the city of Salida. In total, the property offers 38 units that can accommodate visitors, which are categorized into the following types: 22 RV sites, 5 motel rooms, 3 cabins, 5 bunkhouses, and 3 tent sites. The premises also contains a bathhouse with showers as well as a laundry room with two washers and two coin-operated dryers. Moreover, a main office building constitutes a portion of the acreage, which sells souvenirs and supplies to guests, such as T-shirts, local artwork, and ice cream in the summer.
Regarding the amenities provided at the RV sites, two of the spaces exclusively provide water and electrical hookups, while the rest of the sites are equipped with full hookups. Thirty amp electrical service is available at eight of the sites, and the other fourteen offer thirty and fifty amp electrical service. It should also be noted that seven RV spaces are back-in sites, while the other fifteen are pull-through. A picnic table is supplied at each site, and every guest is given access to Wi-Fi over the course of their stay. As for the motel rooms, every accommodation has a private bathroom, bedding, and a TV; however, two of these rooms solely have queen beds, while motel rooms 2, 3, and 4 have twin beds in addition to the queen beds. Concerning the three cabins, patrons should be aware that a maximum of six occupants can be accommodated in these units. Every cabin contains a full kitchen with a stove, refrigerator, coffee pot, toaster, pots, pans, salt and pepper, coffee, and sugar. Lastly, the bunkhouses, which are described by the owners as "simple," provide electricity, a bed, and barbecue grills. With the intent to make it more convenient for those who occupy the bunkhouses, Brenda, one of the owners, mentions that the bathhouse is located right across from these units.
A considerable number of on-site activities are available for patrons at Bighorn RV Park. Visitors are given access to the property's volleyball court, playground, horseshoes, and swimming pool during their stay. Brenda, a co-owner of the establishment, remarks that a fair amount of people tend to go fishing in the neighboring Arkansas River. Some types of fish that can potentially be caught in the river include brown trout and rainbow trout.
As the name of the park would suggest, the owners of the RV park occasionally see upwards of about 30 bighorn sheep on the grounds. Mountainous and rural land encompasses the establishment, along with the Arkansas River that courses adjacent to the park. Brenda describes the location as "a very outdoorsy area," on account of the wide range of outdoor recreational attractions in the vicinity. About a ten-minute drive from Bighorn RV Park, visitors can rent ATVs at Play Dirty ATV Tours and ride on about 17 miles of trails that extend from Play Dirty. Furthermore, Brenda says that Sand Dunes National Park tends to draw a fair amount of outdoor enthusiasts, as "America's tallest dunes, which rise over 700 feet over the Sangre de Cristo Mountains," are found in this national park, according to Bighorn RV Park's website. Other notable attractions include Royal Gorge Bridge, Garden of the Gods, Salida Hot Springs Aquatic Center, Mount Princeton Natural Hot Springs, and the city of Colorado Springs. Brenda also comments that Arkansas River Tours in Cotopaxi is fairly popular among families, as the attraction offers guided fishing tours and white water rafting tours on the Arkansas River. Among the owners' personal restaurant recommendations, patrons can visit local favorites such as Currents Restaurant, Boathouse Cantina, Quincy's, and Tacos El Tapatio. They also recommend two Salida restaurants: Tres Litros Beer Company and High Side! Bar & Grill, both of which offer live music most weekends.
On the first and last Friday of every month, Bighorn RV Park hosts live music at the property's pavilion area, which visitors are welcome to attend. The park also has a community grill where some groups arrange family reunions. In the words of Brenda, one of the owners of Bighorn RV Park, regardless of whether people come in groups to celebrate an occasion or just to enjoy a vacation as a family, the owners want all of their guests to feel "like they want to come back again and again." In an attempt to provide this experience for those who stay at the property, the owners strive to keep the bathrooms clean and to interact with their visitors frequently. One former patron commented on these elements of the park in a review, as they stated, "The restrooms and showers are extremely clean, and the staff is accommodating." Another person described their experience, saying, "The grandkids loved the playground and I absolutely loved the quiet atmosphere!"
Open year-round, Bighorn RV Park typically experiences its busiest season of operation from April 20th to Labor Day weekend. Brenda says that this is the most lively time for the park because raft season and Father's Day weekend often draw a higher quantity of visitors to the area. The Arkansas River is "at the highest runoff" during Father's Day weekend, which makes canoeing, kayaking, and river rafting more popular compared to other times of the year.
Brenda says that overall, "people respect others' space," however, in a further effort to enhance everyone's experience at the RV park, a few policies are implemented that guests are expected to abide by. Though people can bring their ATVs into the park, they must refrain from driving them on the premises. Concerning pets, visitors are welcome to bring a maximum of two dogs to Bighorn RV Park. Moreover, the establishment also enforces a quiet time that begins every night at 10:00 p.m. Lastly, the use of fireworks is prohibited on the grounds of the property.
Since 1945, Bighorn RV Park has operated as a trailer park. Brenda Cromer, one of the co-owners of the property, remarks that there is an extensive history with some of the buildings that are found on-site. For example, the main office was formerly a café. The acreage had previously contained a gas station at some point in its history as well. Bighorn RV Park was initially known as "The Lazy J Resort," according to Brenda. For about eight years, the previous owner operated and managed Bighorn RV Park before the current owners, Aaron Cromer, Brenda Cromer, and Marla Harris, purchased the site in 2018.
Brenda says that she and her husband were led into the lodging industry when they found Bighorn RV Park on one of their skiing trips. She explains that as farmers in Kansas, the only time they could go on a vacation from their work was during the winter. The couple wanted to stay in Colorado because they enjoyed it so much. Thus, they decided to buy the RV park. Since gaining ownership of the property, Brenda expresses that her favorite part of the job is "meeting new people."