Itty Bitty Lakes is an old fashioned campground on Highway 50 and the Arkansas River in Bighorn Sheep Canyon. The canyon opens out to be a small valley bordered by the Sangre de Cristo Mountains peaking at over 13,000 feet to the immediate south, the wild Arkansas River, then cliffs and smaller mountains to the north. Nestled in the Valley is the village of Coaldale, established in 1878.
The Coaldale Post Office is at the east end of Itty Bitty Lakes. Itty Bitty Lakes was a state fish hatchery in the 1930s. The formal campground with full hook-ups was added some 70 years ago. Down on the river, some of the old raceways are now wetland habitats filled with wildflowers and small birds all summer. Besides these wetlands are several more primitive camping sites along the river. Huge 70-year-old Mountain Elms and Peach Leaf Willows shade the entire property. Rocky Mountain Junipers are scattered throughout.
In the center of the property is the Juniper Art Gallery. This is also the campground office. The owners, Robert and Kay Parker, are artists. The building also houses painting, sculpture and weaving studios, as well as the Parker home.
On the west side of the property are two old ponds with massive Peach Leaf Willows hanging over the banks. This property is great for group camping and for small intimate campsites close to the river.
Near the center and at the entrance to the formal campground is the shower house, bathrooms and kitchen. These facilities are open for all our guests. They are old but clean, and the water is pure and hot. There is a Men’s and a Women’s side. Each has 2 toilets, a sink and 2 showers.
Several rafting guides spend the summer with us. They are with Arkansas River Tours, one of the oldest and most respected rafting companies in Colorado. We have worked a deal for you from them. If you stay with us you will get a 10% discount on all of your rafting with them. After you book let us know you are interested in rafting and we will help. You will need a coupon code from us.
You will also receive 10% off anything in our beautiful art gallery.
Open fires are always subject to current county and state fire restrictions. We don't want our forests and homes going up in flames.
Oh, I forgot to tell you that you will be sharing the property with one donkey (she loves carrots and apples), an aging llama and 2 domestic geese. Wild ducks and geese are often on our ponds.
- Check in: After 12PM
- Check out: Before 12PM
- Cancellation policy: Moderate
- On arrival: Meet and greet
- Minimum nights: None
- Accepts bookings: 12 months out
The vibe at Itty Bitty Lakes Campground
If you stayed here and have some insider info for us, let us know!
Kay & Robert were the nicest hosts and made me feel super welcome upon arrival. They had set aside a nice spot for me by the river. The bath / shower house was nice to have, and it was also nice that they had a very clean and well maintained portajon for those of us on the river, to prevent a long walk at 3am if you needed to go to the bathroom. No frills otherwise, but that’s how I like my camping. Super, super nice people.
Such a fantastic experience here! Everything from the view from our tent, the wildlife, to the hospitality and warm welcome we received was beyond our expectations. We've already booked our next visit! :)
Loved it!! We were running late and unable to contact Robert...he stayed open late until we arrived, offered us a choice of terrific sights. Wash room and outhouses were spotless. Highly recommended!
Bob and Kay were wonderful hosts! Very friendly, accommodating and helpful. They have a lovely camp area which sits in the valley and overlooks the river. They were very welcoming and eager to share their bit of heaven with us. Cute little art gallery onsite too!
Loved the campground and host! You can tell Bob and Kay truly love running a campground. Bob knows a lot of the surrounding area to point you in the right direction also. The roar of the river was so peaceful and helped me sleep like a baby:) And the seclusion and wonderful mountain views help you get right as rain. Thanks again Bob and Kay. Travis
Bob and Kay are great hosts. Greeted us as we drove in and spent time to make sure we knew where things were and had all the hook ups we needed. We had a beautiful spot right on the river.
The campsite was secluded and beautiful, My 3 dogs loved it. The Donkey was sooo sweet and loves people and dogs. The river was flowing hard and made the experience soothing and relaxing. Definetely will be renting again!