West Forty RV Park' first season began May 2004 along with the opening of the nearby Iron Range Off-Road Vehicle Park which had continued to be the number one attraction for our guests over the years. West Forty takes its name from the second 40-acer parcel of land owned by the Skrbec family. The first parcel (East 40) was located immediately to the east of the campgrond and once was the location of Sunrise Terrace Mobile Home Park in the 1970s and 1980s during the last mining boom for the Iron Range. At one point, more than 300 people lived at Sunrise Terrace and was responsible for 10 percent of the City of Gilbert's population. The Skrbec family exited the mobile home business in the late 1980s and the land is now a local housing development.
In the early 2000s, the City of Gilbert and the Department of Natural Resources began to move forward with the now, extremely popular Iron Range Off-Road Vehicle Park which reclaimed the old Schley Mine and created a new center of off-road recreation for the state. At the urging of family-friend and late MN Representative, Tommy Rukavina, our family decided to open a privately-owned alternative to the municipal-run campgrounds in the area.
Over the years, West Forty RV Park has continued to make improvements to our property, but we've learned our number one asset is the friendliness and helpfulness of our family-owners and park staff. Our top priority is to ensure that guests have an enjoyable time when they visit Gilbert!
Our family has lived in Gilbert dating back to the mid-1940s. We consider ourselves to be ambassadors to the great things our city and region have to offer. We know every business and service you might need in the area and we're happy to make referrals so your time spent in Gilbert is enjoyable and hassle-free.
Visit our Campground News page for the latest updates of what's going on at West Forty RV Park and Campground.
We have several dedicated group camping sites with a variety of services. Water, sewer and electric options vary by site. Some of the sites designed for group tent camping, others are designed for group RV camping. Site G5 includes the use of our pavilion and is a option for large groups/events. New in 2024 are two luxury tent-cabin sites that are designed for people to enjoy the outdoors without sleeping on the ground or needing a lot of equipment.
We have camper/RV sites including full hook-ups, drive-through sites, back-in sites with electric and various hook-up options and a partially secluded tent/small camper area. The vast majority of our campsites have more square footage than other campgrounds in the area because we have been designed for off-road vehicle enthusiasts and larger site needs of our guests from day one!
Campground features and amenities
Leo Skrbec and his wife Yvonne Skrbec, are life-long residents of Gilbert who served as the original owners of West Forty RV Park after Leo retired from LTV Steel after 40 years of service. Leo serves as the Secretary and Executive Vice President of Mesabi Mountain Holdings and assists with daily operations of the campground. While Leo is now in his 2nd retirement after turning over the campground to his son's, he still helps with maintenance and campground expansion plans as well as taking some time to have a beer with campers. Both Leo and Yvonne continue to be very active in many of Gilbert's local community organizations.
Eldest son, Ron Skrbec, is the CFO and treasurer of Mesabi Mountain Holdings. He is responsible for human resources and providing budget oversight for West Forty RV Park and Campground. He lives in Rosemount with his wife and assists with camping operations on weekends whenever he can. He is nearing retirement from Dakota County and also drives a Zamboni for the City of Rosemount.
Paul Skrbec, is the youngest son of Leo and Yvonne, and serves as the CEO of Mesabi Mountain Holdings (parent company of West Forty RV Park) and has been the majority partner of the campground since 2020. He manages daily campground operations, reservations, marketing, technology, customer service and strategic planning. He loves the outdoors, camping, running and adventure travel. From May 1 through October 31 eash year, his primary residence is at the campground. In the off-season he resides in Minneapolis with his husband, Chuck, and their two golden retrievers where he runs a successful massage practice from his home studio.
His professional background includes more than 20 years of working in tourism at several industry-leading companies such as National Car Rental, Northwest Airlines and Delta Air Lines. After living in Atlanta for six years, he opted to take an early-retirement from Delta in 2015 to be closer to family and pursue certification as a massage therapist and personal trainer. He currently serves as the Chairperson of the City of Gilbert's Campground Board and is active in organizing the Gilbert business community. In 2023, he helped organize Iron Pride and will begin serving as the organization's first chairperson as a 501c3 entity in 2024. He grew up blazing many of the trails in the Iron Trail Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area with his junior and senior high school friends and is a strong advocate for further economic development in the area tied to the sport of off-roading.
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