HorseTrailDirectory.com
Trail Riders Helping Trail Riders

Reviews for Big Creek Trail Ride
(click on name for more information)


Hartshorn, MO

Overall TRAIL RATING with 25 votes:
Overall CAMP RATING with 25 votes:

Enter your Trail and/or Campground Review 

Individual Reviews

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

My wife Cindy, horses Dusty & Banjo and Cookie the Lab, attended the Big Creek Trail Ride Sep 29 – Oct 6, 2018. Our riding club, the Ozark Ridge Riders out of St. Louis, MO, was well represented as usual. Big Creek and the entire Howell Family & Friends are tremendous; this destination is in our top 3 of Missouri destinations and top 2 for week-long rides. There are plenty of options from short to long rides and very little retracing of trails. There is also a variety of features and scenery along the trail; from Big Creek to the beautiful Current River: hills, valleys, rocks, sand, wide to skinny trails and views (bring your camera). While some trails can be challenging the Howell family is very safety conscious and will offer great advice, slow to fast guided rides to fit you and your horse and finally, if you or your horse have a mishap they will aggressively and caringly come to your aid. This is a family camp filled with friendly but serious riders, no need to enforce quiet-hours, all are too tired to cause a ruckus. You don’t have to come with a group to have a great time. Brett Howell will memorize your name and make you feel you are part of the family (amazing) and you will meet other riders who will offer to guide you. There are fun activities almost every night, great food and one of the best tack shops I have seen at these kinds of rides – quality equipment at very competitive prices. Don’t miss the catered lunch on the trail; a great Howell Family tradition. Special thanks to old friends we just met, Rob and Denny Sanders, who adopted and led us on some great trails and encouraged our participation. Rob’s horse was especially helpful staying very calm and setting the example for our horses as we rode through cattle who think all cows are terrorist, al-Qaida sniper cows. For folks who are a little newer to pulling living quarter trailers you might have to ask for some help on some of the sites that are not as flat as you may be use to; bring blocks/wood to level your tires. We have reservations in 2019 for 2 week-long rides and 1 3-day weekend; reservations are the best recommendations for a trail ride. See you on the trail, Bob Fauser.
Reviewed by: Bob Fauser on 10/15/2018 1:24:35 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 9/29/2018 Hometown: Farmington , MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Had a wonderful time riding the trails at Big Creek. Camp is clean, level, stalls are nice and safe. Water is handy to the stalls as well as the manure dump for each barn. The Howell family are wonderful hosts. Trails offer a wide variety from easy to difficult depending on what you are wanting.
Reviewed by: jtrailgirl on 10/27/2014 1:45:32 PM
More reviews by jtrailgirl
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 10/16/2014 Hometown: Columbia, MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Many, many beautiful trails over hills, thru woods, across creeks and the Current River. Camp is clean and comfortable. Stalls are convenient, safe and sturdy, bedding provided. Meals are plentiful and delicious. The Howells and their staff are, gracious and helpful Campers are friendly and most have been coming here for several years. - Be sure to attend the Big Creed Opry - great fun! Big Creek Trailride is the best!!!
Reviewed by: K L on 10/13/2013 10:23:02 AM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 10/10/2013 Hometown: DITTMER, MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Nice camp! Little leveling needed, electric & water at each site, have free firewood. Stalls have water at every other stall, wheel barrow, sawdust, stalls are pretty much enclosed. Great riding! Can ride to cabins, waterfall, spring, Akers Toll Ferry, 3 bridges & school houses. Nichols Cabin is a great ride! Good picnic areas for all day rides! Fair map. We saddled at our trailer. Bob has excellent stories with the history of area! We were riding on our own and would like to try the organized ride. Brett is great to work with for booking out of state guest. Clean trails, camp, bathrooms, laundromat & tack store! Helpful & Friendly people working & camping! Worth our drive! Thanks!
Reviewed by: Linda & Morris Dolph on 10/24/2012 10:59:02 AM
More reviews by Linda %26 Morris Dolph
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 10/7/2012 Hometown: Waterloo , IA

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Trails are varied and beautiful - the Howells are super hosts - campgrounds are clean and quiet- shower houses are clean and well located - stalls are safe & clean with bedding provided - camp is surrounded by hills with the creek walking distance from the dining hall - the food is delicious and plentiful
Reviewed by: Anonymous on 4/8/2012 12:31:16 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 4/5/2012 Hometown: , MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Our rides at Big Creek never disappoint. Trails surrounding Big Creek camp area the best of anywhere we ride, and the Howell family provide the most pleasant stay you could ever want when traveling with your horses. They and all their staff are expert riders who really take care of their guests and make sure every ride is the best. Thank you all for now 9 years of great riding at the annual Fox Trotter trail ride at Big Creek.
Reviewed by: Coy & Sara Bartlett on 10/22/2011 6:43:27 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 10/16/2011 Hometown: Fayetteville, AR

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

This place is wonderful, campground is clean, nice clean box stalls. Most all of the trailes are shaded, very little pasture riding. Lots of water crossings, which is great if it is real hot. The bath houses are clean, great water pressure, laudryroom avaiable on site. And the food is GREAT; guarantee to gain 10 pounds by the end of the week, so bring your fat pants you'll need them. Great family place, usually quiet by 10pm. Sits in a valley with hills all around the views are marvelous,trails can be challenging at times. Organized rides or just ask one of the Howell's how to get to a place and they can give you directions. I've been going 5 years now and will continue to go as long as I'm able. But most of all the Howell family are wonderful and so accomadating.
Reviewed by: T Lay on 9/20/2011 10:08:31 PM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 5/9/2011 Hometown: Parsons, TN

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

We had another fantastic time at Big Creek Trail Ride. This time we went the week before the May organizaed ride and really enjoyed the quietness of the Campground. As usual Brett, Lisa, Bob and the rest of the Howell family were very accomodating and went above and beyond to make sure our stay was enjoyable. Trails were awesome and we found some new ones to expore too. Can't wait to return again!
Reviewed by: Tammy on 5/29/2011 12:50:31 PM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 5/14/2011 Hometown: La Cygne, KS

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

WONDERFUL hosts! They go out of their way to make sure everything goes smooth. Campground is very clean. The stalls are nice and do not allow for escapees! Food is EXCELLENT! It is a family campground, everyone is asleep by ten. The tack shop is small but varied. Downsides to the campground are the lack of shade and the hills. Bring lots of boards to level the trailer, and getting from your trailer to the horses can be a challenge. The only problem with the trails is the lack of marking or maps. They are hilly, but not challenging footing wise. Beautiful scenery, wonderful people, I will go back.
Reviewed by: horsin on 5/8/2011 10:08:24 AM
More reviews by horsin
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 10/20/2010 Hometown: Lebanon, MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

This is one of my favorite places to ride, and I ride many places. I've been going now 5 or 6 years and look forward to going every May. The Howell family run a top notch trailride, if your the big party type this is not a ride for you, but if your looking for a family trailcamp you will fall in love with Big Creek. The food is plentiful, and down right good. The shower houses are cleaned everyday and plenty of HOT water with pressure. The stalls are solid box stalls with good locks on them, I have a horse that tries every year to undo the locks and he hasn't made it yet. The Howell family are very accommodating to any special needs that may arise, there's a fix-it-guy that comes around the middle of the week, a ferrier on sight as well, and you can go sit in the tack house after meal time and here all the tales of the day, how to fix a horse that's not broke or is; and put your two-cents in as well, and you can buy an ice cream while doing all this. The trailes are some of the best I've riden, you want get bored with the scenery. There might not be any phone service in that valley, but when I go trailriding I want to get away from the phone,TV etc. This type of vacation is diffently getting away from everything! And if you fill the need to do domestic stuff they have a very nice laundry room. Don't take my word for Big Creek, load up the family and dog and come join the ride, if your a true horse lover and love to ride and camp, meet new people you will not be disappointed. Happy Trails
Reviewed by: Thais Lay on 4/4/2011 1:11:50 PM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 5/14/2010 Hometown: Parsons, TN

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

This was our 5th year, and we will be coming back with our Texas friends every year until we can no longer ride! There aren't many places we'd haul our old bones and horses close to 800 miles for, but this is one. It's not a party ride (go to Eminence if you want that). After about 10pm, about the only sound you might hear is snoring! The campground is not one of those "nestled among the trees" type places, but they made do with the best they could given the hilly terrain. The riding is really great with lots of variety (creeks, woods, fields, gravel roads, hills and valleys), the food is varied and excellent with lots of choices on sides and salad fix-in's. Restrooms and showers are very nice. Stalls are solid walled up to about 6 ft, and very strong doors and latches (no casting or escapees here). It's a family oriented place, run by the Howell family (Brett, Lisa, Robert) plus other family members and long time friends. Their latest added Thursday night entertainment is the Big Creek Opry with country singing impostors of every kind in every type of getup - hilarious and fun! If you've never been sat on and kissed by a 200+ lb man in drag, you are in for a treat. Other entertainment may include a local Bluegrass group, a husband and wife singing duo, bingo, etc. and there is always your own cards games or whatever in the dining hall. There is free firewood, and you can have a campfire anywhere you want that is safe. There is no cell phone service by any carrier in the campground, no internet, no TV service via your RV antenna, but there is one satellite TV in the lounge, and a free use phone for 800# or credit card calls. You'll be amazed how you really won't miss all that stuff once you settle in. You can get most cell phone services with about a 20 mile ride if you are desperate. I would guess that at least 70-80% of the ride attendees are repeat customers - and that says a bunch right there.
Reviewed by: Don & Cindy on 5/28/2010 4:11:10 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 5/9/2010 Hometown: Cameron, TX

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

The trails around Big Creek campground are among the most beautiful we've ever ridden. Although no map, they are easy to see and the Howell family is helpful to tell you about any trails you want to ride. Well kept campground, great large spaces for our bigger trailers, wood provided for camp fires, and if you are there for an organized ride the food is plentiful and great. We ride here at least once a year and will always return.
Reviewed by: Sara & Coy Bartlett on 5/18/2010 1:59:27 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 10/17/2009 Hometown: Fayetteville, AR

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Nice place to ride. The trails are fairly challenging. Food is great and the Howell family were all very friendly and helpful. Campers were friendly too. Clean bathrooms.
Reviewed by: Anonymous on 3/19/2010 8:25:06 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 10/6/2009 Hometown: , MI

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

I've been to Big Creek several times in the last 4 years and love it more every time! I've gone during the organized rides and when there's nobody else there! I'm learning the trails more and more each time. The food is awesome during the organized rides and the Howells are very nice people. I highly recommend it!
Reviewed by: Barbie Hon on 4/13/2009 7:33:55 PM
Experience: Not Specified Ride Date: 1/1/2004 Hometown: Poplar Bluff, MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Reviewed by: Pam Witthofft on 11/8/2008 3:01:01 PM
Experience: Not Specified Ride Date: 1/1/2004 Hometown: Troy, IL

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Another wonderful ride at Big Creek. Many very nice improvements to campground, concrete at dining hall entrance, horse wash stations. Food wonderful as always. Howell's so accomidating. Marsha and Ed so enjoyable. Can't wait to go back in the fall. Rate this ride as 10 full feed bags!!
Reviewed by: MS on 6/9/2008 3:53:07 PM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 5/15/2008 Hometown: Warrensburg, MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Have attended twice a year since opening. Always more than enjoy myself, the Howell's (owners) have always been the perfect host's, and so goes for the balance of staff. Have never had an ounce of a bad experience. In my opinion, the only folks who might have a problem would be the "party" crowd, as this is not a party kind of trail ride, come, have fun. "Party" behaviour is not tolerated, rules are enforced, which is why I continue to go, I know this will not be tolerated. I have never heard a rude word uttered about Big Creek, except by those who could not be pleased, no matter how hard one may try. By golly, it's a grand place to ride, the food is great, trails great, Howell's the best. God Bless this family enterprize, I'll keep coming, as long as I can swing a leg over a good gaited horse.
Reviewed by: Melani Stewart on 2/27/2008 10:49:26 AM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 9/20/2007 Hometown: Warrensburg, MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

My 1st time at big Creek. The staff are friendly. The food is great, but too plentiful. the guided rides were challenging, but fun. We took the slow ride with Bob Howell as guide. He made it interesting by varing the terrain plus providing historical stories about the areas we rode through. The campsites, restrooms, and mess hall were very clean and the stalls are in good shape. We have reservations for next year all ready made.
Reviewed by: Cynthia Maynard on 10/1/2007 12:23:46 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 9/16/2007 Hometown: Silvis, IL

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Been going to Big Creek for 5 years, twice a year. Still haven't ridden all the trails. There are very wide loggging roads that go on for miles, others will take you to the Current River, there are interesting sites to ride to such as Granny's Cabin, Nichols Cabin, Welch Springs and on and on. Some trails are very challenging with steep climbs and decends, others are gradual. All are very rocky so take appropriate actions to protect horses feet. Trails are not marked, so would suggest a GPS loaded with the National Forest Current River MO Map. The staff at Big Creek is very helpful. I've never had a respect problem. I do agree that the arena should be left open for guests to use and not house the trail boss horses. A round pen would be beneficial too for warming up green horses. Stalls are very safe. Organized ride food service is very good. If you can't fine something to eat, then your just plain too picky. Sites are close together, but not unlike any other trail ride places that have large organized rides.
Reviewed by: ponytammy on 8/15/2007 10:13:26 AM
More reviews by ponytammy
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 5/20/2007 Hometown: La Cygne, KS

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

This was our first time to big creek and we had a very nice time. Brett & Lisa are very nice people as are the rest of the crew. We enjoyed a very nice week of riding and relaxation. The food is very good and plenty of it. We have already rolled our deposit for next years June ride.
Reviewed by: cathy on 6/11/2007 1:05:38 PM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 6/2/2007 Hometown: monroe, IA

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Reviewed by: Anonymous on 6/11/2007 1:01:37 PM
Experience: Not Specified Ride Date: 6/2/2007 Hometown: , Select State

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

We also have been treated in an unkind and disrespectful way by the owners of this trail ride. Believe me, they are just as rude to men as they are to women. They were extremely rude to me and my friend both, even though we had been repeat customers and had talked other people into going to their ride. The ride is not that special, anyway. In fact, it's rather boring to the true trail rider. The food used to be very good, but has declined in quality. We're going to skip this one from now on.
Reviewed by: Carl on 4/27/2007 10:39:05 AM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 4/27/2007 Hometown: Macomb, IL

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

I have enjoyed going to Big Creek for several years until the last few trips there. The owner and manager seems to not know the rule that the customer should be treated with respect and not with a snappish tongue for questions asked or a surly attitude. Several of my friends and acquaintances (all dedicated trail riders and frequent customers) have also been treated with the same disrespect and bad attitude. We have decided to be treated that way is not appropriate for return customers. The surly attitude seems to be directed more towards women then men.
Reviewed by: Nancy on 4/21/2007 4:08:44 PM
Experience: Not Specified Ride Date: 4/21/2007 Hometown: Springfield,, MO

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

Riding is boring. Half day rides are from 9 to noon. All day rides 9 to 1. After that, nothing to do. No entertainment, unless you like Bingo. Road getting to trail ride is 7 miles of rough, dusty, and pot hole filled gravel. Rig, horses, truck, and tack are dust laden when you finally arrive at camp. Campground has no shade, is uneven, and sites are close and crowded. You pass a lot of junk on the property to get to the camping. Also, there is an outdoor arena, but cannot be used because it is full of big rocks and the owner always has a horse or two running loose in it. The food is good and the showers and bathrooms are clean. This is not a serious trailrider's trail ride.
Reviewed by: Robert on 12/7/2006 3:35:49 PM
Experience: Expert Ride Date: 6/7/2006 Hometown: , IL

Trail Rating: 
Camp Rating: 

We got away for a girl weekend, and had a fantastic time. The trails were great for all levels, we even had a pretty inexperienced rider with us and she did just great! Brett and Lisa were awesome the food was great and we are looking forward to a girl weekend again in this fall! Also our guides were great as well! Thanks for the memories!
Reviewed by: Kandy Taylor on 8/17/2006 6:23:59 PM
Experience: Intermediate Ride Date: 10/6/2005 Hometown: Pleasant Hill, MO

More Reviews Available.
View Complete List