May 9-19, 2016: Here’s a general overview of the campground at Dead Horse Ranch State Park in Cottonwood, Arizona which has several loops. Detailed review and pictures for each RV loop is linked below.
Basic Info: No sewer at sites, but a nice big double dump station at the entrance. Site pads and roads around loops are asphalt paved.
Loops Differences: Three loops for RVs (Quail, Red-Tail Hawk, Cooper’s Hawk) with 30/50 amp electric and water at all sites. Black Hawk Loop is for tents only and Raven Loop is only for groups. See Facilities for more info.
Rates: See each loop below for 2016 rates. Check park website for updates.
Detailed Reviews: See links below for the three RV loops with more info and pictures.
Quail Loop – Sites 1-45. This loop is the oldest with sites generally smaller and closer together than the next two loops. The payoff is more mature trees for shade and being a little closer to the Verde River and the lagoons, but you pay an extra $5/night for these benefits ($35/night). Site Map.
Red-Tail Hawk Loop – Sites 46-82 (36 sites, including one ADA accessible). Sites are a bit wider and longer than Quail Loop, but there is also less shade due to smaller, less mature trees. Views of the mountains are especially nice! $30/night. Site Map.
Cooper’s Hawk Loop – Sites 83-110 (27 sites, including two ADA accessible). This loop is adjacent to Red-Tail Hawk Loop and there is a path between the two loops. The site facilities and views are about the same. I was in site #99 here and really enjoyed the layout and especially the gorgeous mountain views. $30/night. Site Map.
Black Hawk Loop – Sites 111 – 127 (17 sites) Tenters only. There are no electric hookups here and two water spigots serve this loop. There are picnic tables and fire pits/grills at each site. Restrooms/showers are at adjacent Cooper’s Hawk Loop. $20/night. Site Map.
Raven Loop – (Groups only) A 23 site group campground with modern restroom facilities providing hot water & showers, covered picnic tables, and group fire ring. No electricity or water at each site, but there are a couple of faucets for this loop. It also has equestrian corrals. Maximum Group Size: 46 Units. Available by reservation by calling the park directly (928) 634-5283.
Reservations – Online or call 520-586-2283. The reservations site is very easy to navigate and gives full info on every site. I heard feedback from others that the agents here are extremely helpful and knowledgeable about the campground and the sites. George (Park Manager) said this is because they are in-house people familiar with the campground and not a remote, national call center.
Walk-Ins – There is a self pay kiosk at each camping loop with instructions for those arriving after 5 pm on a space available basis. If there are no cones or reserved signs on the site, you can pay and occupy a site for one night and check at the office in the morning about the possibility of extending.
I always include short recaps of pros and cons about the parks I visit. I realize this is subjective stuff and what bothers some people, others won’t have a problem with, and vice versa. As a fulltime RVer, I like things that weekend campers can do without. But, based on my own observations and/or comments from others, here goes:
Location is fantastic – close to so many other attractions to explore. See Park Overview for more info on these.
Feels more secluded than you would think since it’s only a mile Cottonwood. You don’t hear town noise, but you have all the convenient town amenities close at hand.
Trails galore with parts of the Verde River Greenway within the park boundaries.
Other than within the campgrounds, I found the signage lacking and wished there had been better info on how to access the Verde River Greenway and some of the trails, even with the maps.
In sites with little or no shade, the sun and heat can really be brutal in the summertime.
George (Park Manager) said the main complaint they hear is how hard it can be to get reservations sometimes, so be sure to plan ahead. Also, there is a two week maximum stay within a 30 day period.
Satellite TV: I had no problem with my rooftop DirecTV satellite in Cooper’s Hawk Loop, Site 99. Even though there are trees scattered throughout, it looks like the only loop that might be a problem for rooftop systems is Quail Loop since the trees are larger.
Internet/Wi-Fi/Cell Phone: No wi-fi within the park, but I had good access using my Verizon jetpack; cell phone worked great.
Malia’s 2 Cents: I had a blast during my stay here. I was totally satisfied with my site and really enjoyed just walking around the park, especially my favorite, the lagoons area. The park was also a perfect home base for me to see so many things I wanted to see in the area. I had to remind myself to be conservative with water so my tanks didn’t fill up since I’d been used to full hookups, but the benefits certainly outweighed any drawbacks. Dark skies with multitudes of stars and quiet nights make up for a lot!
Tips: The wind can get gusty, so don’t leave your awnings out when you leave.
Your Two Cents? The only way I know if the reviews and research I present are helpful to you is if I hear from you. I sure would appreciate your feedback in Comments below. Have you stayed here and want to share your experience to benefit other RVers? Please Comment below!
All Malia’s Miles Dead Horse Ranch State Park Pages:
More Info on Dead Horse Ranch State Park:
CampsitePhotos.com has pictures of every site