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The Lone Duck Campground is located minutes off of Highway 24 in Cascade, Colorado. The five-acre property has over seventy-five separate sites, including RV sites with full hookups, rental cabins, and tent sites. Guests can utilize several activity areas on the property, including a fishing pond stocked with rainbow trout, an arcade, a swimming pool, a splash pad, a basketball court, and a children's playground. A small store is also located on the property where camping supplies and essential food items are sold. The Lone Duck Campground is family-oriented, and many family reunions are held at the property. The entrance to Pine Peak Summit is a two minutes drive from the property. The campground and cabins are open for reservation from the first week in May to the last week of September.
The Lone Duck Campground is located just off of Highway 24 in Cascade, Colorado. The property encompasses five acres of land covered in trees, a natural spring-fed fishing pond, and is surrounded by mountains, including Ormes Peak, Pikes Peak, and the Almagre Mountain. Nearly seventy-five RV sites, tent sites, and cabin rentals are dotted around the premises. The property has a very open layout, with the cabins looking out over the pond on a small hill. The RV sites are all spread apart, however, closer sites can be reserved together for joint sites. All of the tent and RV sites are shaded. Additional spaces on the property include the arcade room, a small store, the main office, a laundry room, showers, restrooms, and a lounge.
Breakfast is not served at the Lone Duck Campground. However, coffee and hot water for tea are always available in the main lounge for guests to use. The store on the property also contains many basic convenience items such as milk, eggs, syrup, spatulas, and roasting sticks. The store also sells fishing rods, bait, and hooks. Gift shop-style items are also available at the store, including sweatshirts, mugs, and stickers. The owners, Lauren and her husband, hope to add more local vendors and artisan goods to their storefront in the future.
The game room is available for guest use at all houses and has a change machine for guests to obtain coins to play games. Games included in the arcade include Pac-Man, Gala, and Tron. The swimming pool and splash pad on the property are gated with several bistro tables, shaded tables, and pool chairs in the sun. The pool and splash pad are open from 10:00 AM to dark daily and are heated to 85 degrees. After guests have finished swimming, they can head to the bathhouse, where multiple private heated showers are located as well as separate men and women restrooms. There is also a dishwashing station.
The laundry facility is coin-operated and has a small sitting area where guests can sit while waiting for their clothing. A basketball court with an adjustable rim can be a popular area for active children and adults. In one corner of the property, there is a playground with five slides, swings, and a miniature climbing wall. Every campsite is connected to free internet services. The secure network password can be obtained from the main office. The fishing pond on the property is privately stocked with rainbow trout. There is a small fee for fish caught in the pond.
All sites have communal use of the outdoor facilities on the property. Ten of the RV sites are full hookups with water sewer and 30 amp electric services. Thirty of the RV sites contain water and 30 and 50 amp electric services. A dump station is available for guests without sewer. Four sites on the property allow pull-through access. Every RV site comes with a firepit and a voucher for a bundle of firewood at the main office. In addition, each site has a picnic table. All of the tent sites on the property vary in pad size as do the RV sites to accommodate different size campers and tents.
Cabins One, Two, Three, and Four can all sleep up to five individuals with a double bed, a twin bunk bed, and a trundle bed. Cabins Five, Six, and Seven can also sleep five people with a double bed and a twin-sized bunk bed. Inside each cabin, there is a small microwave and refrigerator. Bedding and linens are not included in the cabin rentals, and there are no water facilities. Guests who reserve cabins can use the bathhouse and restaurants nearby. Each cabin has a front porch with seating, a picnic table, and a firepit.
The Lone Duck Campground is open from the first weekend in May to the last weekend in September. The busiest months of operation are in July and August, when the weather is the warmest. During these months, guests often spend most of their time on the property swimming or fishing. During the early summer and fall, guests participate in activities such as hiking and exploring the nearby mountains.
The Lone Duck Campground has recently gone under new ownership, though the new management hopes to maintain the previously-appointed culture of the campground from decades of operation. When the current owners Lauren and her husband purchased the property, they researched the history, stayed on-site, and recorded all of the previous owners’ regular procedures to keep the property similar to how it was. The primary goal behind this was to make the campground as familiar to repeat guests as possible.
The motto or slogan at the Lone Duck Campground is, “Family camping at the foot of Pike Peak.” Lone Duck Campground is a notably family-oriented campground. “We want to make sure that every guest feels like this is ‘their’ campground,” says the owner Lauren. By adding safe areas where guests can enjoy activities they love, such as the arcade, fishing pond, and pool, the location is meant to accommodate families with children of all ages and capabilities. Several of the campsites on the property are ADA approved, and the bathhouse and laundry facilities are handicap accessible.
Specific policies have been implemented at the Lone Duck Campground to help keep guests comfortable and to improve the systems of operation at the campground. Pets are allowed on the campground, however, they must be under owner supervision and leashed at all times. In addition, only up to three pets can be brought to the campground per site. No smoking is allowed in the cabins, main lounge, or pool area. These spaces get a lot of foot traffic, and smoke can damage air quality and the cleanliness of these spaces. The quiet hours at the campground are strictly implemented from 10:00 PM to 8:00 AM. The pool is open from 10:00 AM to dark; this is an essential policy for the safety of the swimmers.
In order to bring more of the residential community in the area into the campground, the property is also open to the public to use the swimming pool for a small fee. The main office is open from 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM every day so that guests can drop in at any time with questions and concerns. Last-minute reservations can also be made at the front desk. Many of the guests that spend time at the Lone Duck Campground are from Texas, Minnesota, and other southern states. Most are passing through the area and need a place to stay overnight. A large number of the return guests are from the Colorado area, however.
A variety of positive reviews have been left regarding the Lone Duck Campground. Most of these reviews contain kind words about the family-friendly atmosphere, the amenities, and the property’s location. “Great facilities, customer service, and the location cannot be beaten. For the first five nights we stayed in Site 13 and last night we stayed in Site 44. Both sites were great, 13 had a little more room but 44 was more secluded and had nice views. The location is close to everything. The campground was clean, the pool was awesome after a long day of hiking. I love the community feel,” said a recent guest at the campground.
The Lone Duck Campground hosts many different family reunions every year. Guests are welcome to use any of the property’s recreational facilities for their family reunions. In the future, the owners hope to build a large pavilion with seating and grills so groups can gather for meals. In addition, some weddings have been held at the property as well. In order to accommodate a wedding, the property has to momentarily shut-down, meaning that Lone Duck doesn’t host many weddings in the summer. During the slow season, though, weddings are welcome. In the coming years, the owners hope to offer more off-season events.
Besides the attractions and activities available on the property, there are many recommended places to visit outside of the Lone Duck Campground. The Pikes Peak entrance is a two-minute drive from the property, and guests can take that entrance on a canyon view drive up to the summit of the peak. There are several hiking trails, waterfalls, and lookout points along the way. The Cog Railway is one of two railways of its type in the United States and is located fifteen minutes away from the Lone Duck Campground. Manitou Springs is another popular tourist attraction in the area.
The Lone Duck Campground was initially established in the 1960s. For decades prior to being a campground, the natural spring pond on the property was used as an overnight stopping spot for caravans passing through the area. Here horses would drink, and the grassy area was ideal for carriages and wagons to stop on their journey and rest for the night. The campground was originally just for tents and slowly began expanding to RV sites and cabins over the next few decades. For three generations the campground stayed in the same family of the original owners before being sold to the previous owners in the early 2000s.
Upon purchasing the property, the previous owners added the main office, the pool, arcade, lounge and updated all of the cabins. They ran the property for years along with several nearby businesses before attempting to sell the campground in 2018. In 2021, Lauren Ehlers and her husband purchased the property. Their first season in operation as the owners was the summer of 2021. The couple were in the real estate investing business and were looking for a building to purchase up the street from the campground with the previous owners offered to sell them the property. After obtaining all of the information about the property, its history—and visiting the space themselves—they decided to give the campground industry a try.
Over the past year, the couple made minor improvements such as adding a small general store in the main lodge building and staffing a maintenance staff, a grounds manager, and a full-time desk associate to ensure that guests have adequate customer service. In the future, they plan to host more events and hope to build a heated event center where winter weddings and other events can be held during the campground’s off-season. Because the campground is so family-oriented, they would also like to add a large covered pavilion with outdoor seating and grills for family gatherings, and a dog runs for pets to get off their leashes.