Are there any Moto camps in the Rockies?

Discussion in 'The Rockies – It's all downhill from here...' started by Rocky Mountain Motos, Jul 31, 2019.

  1. Rocky Mountain Motos

    Rocky Mountain Motos On a long leash

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    Wondering if anyone out there is doing something along the lines of a destination moto-only camping center. I'm kicking around the idea of putting one together, since Red Lodge is a natural location for something like this, as it's located at the base of the Beartooth Pass.

    $30 a night tent camping, a bar, showers, maybe a few small cabins, possibly lite repair facility.

    I'd LOVE to have access to this type of facility while riding in Europe, but haven't seen anything. I know there's one in Bulgaria, though.

    Just curious if anyone knows of something like this.
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  2. Podzo's PD

    Podzo's PD Long timer

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    3 Step Hideaway is close to Colorado in Utah 6.JPG . It is sort of what you are interested in.
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  3. Rogue_Ryder

    Rogue_Ryder

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    $30/night that's pretty steep for a place to pitch a tent. There's lots of free camping all over the Rockies albeit without showers. Down in the Southeast there's 2 Motorcycle Campgrounds I've stayed at and I'm sure there's more that I'm not aware of, down there free camping options are much more limited than in the Rockies and they're charging 1/2 that or less for tent camping.

    I've stayed at this place many times sometimes in a Tent and sometimes in a Cabin:
    http://www.huntslodge.com/Rates.html

    TWO in Suches is the best motorcycle campground/restort I've been to anywhere and it even has a nice restaurant:
    https://twowheelsofsuches.com/camping/

    There's some Motorcycle campgrounds in the Black Hills as well (not just the Buffalo Chip) although I've personally never stayed at one.
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  4. Rocky Mountain Motos

    Rocky Mountain Motos On a long leash

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    Perfect, thanks :)
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  5. Rocky Mountain Motos

    Rocky Mountain Motos On a long leash

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    Awesome info, thanks for that. I hear ya on the expensive.... however, land here is nose bleed expensive. A 10 acre parcel is going to be over a half million. Hotels/motels in town are very expensive as well... approaching $300 a night. The local KOA gets $34 per night for a tent spot, so I think $30 is about right. Still, all comments are appreciated :)
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  6. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    It's going to be difficult to offset those kind of property costs with something that can only operate 6-7mos a year @ $30 a pop catering only to motorcycles. You'd need a lot of riders to make that kind of investment pay, hosting rallys might be the answer.

    I've stayed at the 3 step and it's a nice place, Scott the owner also feeds the riders so it brings in more than the cost of the tent space. I think it's a sound idea if it can be made to pay. You should talk with Dingweed on here, he's the owner of the 3 step.
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  7. Rocky Mountain Motos

    Rocky Mountain Motos On a long leash

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    Thanks for the input. Really appreciated.

    I need to make this work with a reasonable ceiling... maybe $500K total in costs.
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  8. RideFreak

    RideFreak Torque Junky

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    That kind of place would probably play off the rental business nicely. If you put together some decent (legal) single track rides in the area that would add another potential $$ stream. It's being done in Idaho. Plus everyone knows dirt bikers and more fun than those stuffy adventure riding dudes. :D
    #8
  9. ROAD DAMAGE

    ROAD DAMAGE Long timer Supporter

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    How about talking to the Red Lodge Brewing folks?
    It always looked to me like they might have some space/acreage there on the north end of town.

    Also I've got a friend that comes up to RL pretty often for dog trials and agility competitions.
    She said that they have some sort of facility either at or near the fairgrounds where the dog people stay?
    I'd bet that someone around there already has the facility ........... but it's just not being used for motorcyclists YET. :D

    Would it be an easier thing to pull off in Absarokee, Roscoe, Fishtail, Roberts, etc. where land prices are probably much less?
    And I've got an amigo that owns a beautiful ranch 4-5 miles up Red Lodge Creek Road.
    Maybe he's tired of eating dust, stepping in cowshit, and losing money! :evil :lol3

    The Steamboat Springs area is such a crossroads of motorcycling routes that I always thought something like you're talking about would go over real well here. But maybe it would just be "too seasonal"?

    Keep us posted!
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  10. itrack

    itrack Been here awhile

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    Your idea is a good one, but you're going to have to keep your overhead down. I would suggest throwing something like this up near Silverton where land is way way cheaper per acre. No tent camping as it usually averages around 30 degrees at night. I small off the grid cabin spot with showers and meals would be appealing to the Jeep, motorcycle, and SxS crowd.
    #10
  11. Themastermike

    Themastermike Think you caught me in a coma Supporter

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    If you are thinking of throwing 500G down and getting something back at 30/night, you might as well forgo that little contribution and do it as a full camp sponsor!

    Let me know when you open.
    #11
  12. Rogue_Ryder

    Rogue_Ryder

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    KOA is gonna have a Pool, WiFi, laundry, a store etc. if you plan to offer those amenities the high cost might be justifiable. Having a place to work on your bike and access to tools is nice; but what % of customers will actually need that?

    Since you're looking to start this business where your costs are going to be pretty high, I agree that trying to pay for all the bills on a handful of bikers a night for 3-4 months out of the year probably won't cover the operating costs.

    Knopf over in Germany might be a model you could look into. One of the things I loved about his set up is he arranges a shuttle for you to and from the airport and will store your luggage while out on a tour. You can ship your bike to him or rent one of his. Of anywhere I've rented a bike this was the best experience by far; and why he probably has repeat customers from all over the world. Billings might not offer good enough airline service to attract an international customer base but you sure as hell could get a lot of domestic traffic.
    http://www.knopftours.com/Web-Site/Rental.html
    (still only 15 Euro to tent camp and a very reasonable 55/night for the B&B).

    Possibly look into doing the Sled thing in the Winter if that's possible in your location.
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  13. RedHawk47

    RedHawk47 Adventurer Supporter

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  14. _CJ

    _CJ Rugged Individualist

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    It's probably hard enough to turn a profit running a campground open to everyone, but limiting yourself to the cheapest demographic out there would make it almost impossible.

    Maybe open a restaurant/bar with free camping out back for anyone who spends X dollars. The real money is in alcohol anyhow.



    .
    #14
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  15. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

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    Seems in the US the majority of Moto camps are in the Appalachians.
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  16. HeadShrinker

    HeadShrinker Long timer Supporter

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    Good luck. You’ll need it—and more.
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  17. Oilhed

    Oilhed MarkF Supporter

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    I like the idea of a bunch of small camping cabins. Think prefab sheds with a couple of bunk beds. You can make your money on weekend bbqs. Early and late season host rallies for clubs. I'd love to do it but hate staying home during the summer.

    P.S. Somewhere between Columbia Falls & Polebridge Montana would be saaaaweeet!
    #17
  18. eddyturn

    eddyturn Eternal Wannabe Supporter

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    Open up a split facility. Some for the bigger RVs and half the Park solely for bikers. Cover your bases.
    #18
  19. ATCguy

    ATCguy Been here awhile

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    Lots of good feedback already given, so the only thing I could add is this:

    What would make your place stand out from the other camping facilities already in the area? What's gonna make a rider wanna stay at your place over the other already established facilities in the area?

    As you said, there's a KOA is right up the road... another one to the northwest in Big Timber, one northeast in Billings... and another plus plenty more campgrounds where I am down here in Cody. All of them with, as Rouge_Ryder said... showers, pool, camp store, etc.

    There's plenty of restaurants & other lodging in town, so not much on those lines are gonna make your place stand out. And as great as the Beartooth & Chief Jo are to ride, they aren't necessarily "destinations" in their own right. They can both be experienced as a simple "via" on the way to other destinations. So your guest would only be of the 'short stay' type for a single night.. maybe 2.

    It seems to me what you may need is something to make your place a destination in its own right, where you could attract guests for multiple night to get more return on your investment. Like, maybe an on-site motocross & ATV park... with a track for riders, trails & such for bikes & ATVs, etc. Now you'd have 2 markets to cater to during summer (motorcycles AND atvs).. and maybe you could even figure out something for the snowmobile folks too in order to have a winter market.

    Someone mentioned cabins might be attractive... and while building those could be expensive, maybe consider what they use up in Alaska for shelter along the Dalton: insulated intermodal shipping containers with bunk beds & a stove for heat.

    Again, just thinking off the top of my head... but it all goes back to my original question: what's gonna make your place stand out?
    #19
  20. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra Supporter

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    Not very far away over in Cody. I believe the owner is an inmate or has at least popped up here. Seems to be making a go of it.
    #20