COVID 19 UPDATE For the Bighorn River and Bighorn Angler

COVID 19 UPDATE For the Bighorn River and Bighorn Angler

March 17, 2020 8:29 pm Published by 1 Comment

Coronavirus Update – Bighorn Angler Fly Shop and Lodge

Hello everyone!  We hope all is well with you and your families as we all do our part to protect each other and tackle this most recent challenge.  While we are literally at the end of the road in nowhere USA, and perhaps a bit more sheltered than populous areas from this virus, we will not be complacent and need to take this pandemic seriously.  The Bighorn Angler will be taking our cues from the CDC and local authorities to enforce any social requirements they demand.  In addition, we are taking extra safety precautions to protect our guests or anyone that walks into our shop.

Our societal role here at the Bighorn Angler is to help people get away from it all, release the stress of everyday life, enjoy the outdoors bringing people closer to nature, and to do what we can to facilitate lifelong memories.  We take that role very seriously, especially at a time like this.  So we’ve decided to remain open so people can continue to engage in this low risk activity and take their minds off the stress of this invisible enemy.  That could change if the guidelines change.


At this point we would like to go over how we are handling reservations, date changes, and cancellations as naturally we are getting a lot of questions and concerns around upcoming trips, and cover the additional safety measures we are putting into place in our facilities and operation…


First, our general policy is if you cancel any time before 30 days of your trip we refund your deposit (less a small processing fee).  Normally, our policy is if someone were to cancel within 30 days of their trip then deposit is non-refundable, however over the years we have always worked with our clients if circumstances come up that are out of their control (like health emergencies) and credit them their deposit to apply to any future booking with us.

This year is no exception.  Given the unprecedented circumstance with the coronavirus, if any mandated social requirements from the CDC or appropriate local authorities prevent our clients from coming out for their dates, we will refund deposits if a customer requires and waive any fees.


While safety is paramount, a pragmatic risk-free approach to your reservation is probably the best way to handle fear of the unknown and the current situation.  We would rather deal with the actual issues as the dates become closer rather than guessing what that situation might be.  After this initial pause is over and folks start returning to their normal lives, we expect a rush for our remaining peak season dates as they are already filling up.  So we are advising clients to book their dates as soon as possible to secure their spot, again with no risk of losing deposit funds.


Definitely don’t want folks to be kicking themselves for not getting out here this year as the water and fishing are shaping up to be very good.  Lots of big fish being caught right now.  The fish don’t have coronavirus, and being out on the water might be one of the lowest risk activities anyone could engage in right now.

Lastly, below are just some of the additional safety measures we are taking to eliminate the potential spread of gems and eliminating customer touch points:

  • Regular wipe down of shop and facility door nobs, bathroom sinks, remote controls, light switches, etc
  • Cashless transactions only, and we don’t touch your credit card for swipes
  • Shop staff will wear protective handwear
  • No manual shuttle sheet fill out (we will fill them out for you)
  • No finger signature on the transactional (POS) ipad by customers, minimize touching of the ipad generally, and ipad wipedown after every transaction
  • Please purchase your fishing licenses online if possible.  Trust us, carrying around the new 8.5×11″ piece of paper is a pain as well!
  • We will stagger lodge rooms to two to three day minimums between customer stays over the near term where possible, so transmission would be virtually impossible from room stays, and wiping down of all surface areas in between
  • For meals, we will limit the number of people in our dining area to 10 for now, and place small groups at least 6 feet apart per the guidelines. We will also be taking advantage of our outside tables to serve meals if desired or needed
  • Meals will be delivered to cabins where separate kitchen tables are present if needed


If you have an upcoming reservation over the next few weeks, just give us a call on your way in so we can make sure and coordinate with you where needed.  And if you have any questions or concerns in the meantime don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and give us a call!


Thank You For Your Continued Support,

The Bighorn Angler

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This post was written by Pete Shanafelt

1 Comment

  • jeff dahl says:

    good post Pete…hang in there..Im gonna work on the sowbug patterns you posted..Hope to see you sooner than later..Jeff Dahl

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