| or Call: 970-241-2697

Tweet Me!

Red Rock Archery
Everything for the Bowhunter and Target Archer

The Story of Red Rock Archery

or, "How We Became One of the Top Archery Stores in the West."

Would you like to meet the folks who work here?

The Luceros anticipated the oil shale bust and left the petroleum industry in 1982. They opened Red Rock Archery in 1983...

just a few short months after the area’s oil shale plants closed their doors for good. It was just about as inauspicious an environment for a new business as one could think of.

The store’s atmosphere is more that of a familiar tavern than a full-service retailer...

People typically begin showing up soon after the doors open. Walk-in traffic is dominated by regular customers, many of whom are likely to have dropped in just to socialize. The location isn’t out of the way by any means, but there’s little through-traffic passing by. The point is that people regularly take the trouble to visit Red Rock Archery because they enjoy spending time with like minds in a relaxed environment that’s become a hub of interaction for a variety of outdoor activities.

“We want to take our time in talking with people and figuring out what they’re after,”

says Gabe. “If someone’s been in before, we want to know their name and remember a little something about them. It’s important for us to make the customer feel welcome and comfortable. That’s how we’d want to be treated. Besides, it only takes a tiny bit of reluctance for someone to leave their wallet in their pocket.”

Testimonials

"The people at Red Rock Archery know what they’re doing, and Gabe’s got this easygoing way about him. It’s hard to define, but it puts peoples at ease. I think it’s a big factor in how Red Rock Archery has been able to increase sales of Darton products every year we’ve worked together, and the feedback we get from our retail customers confirms this.”

Ted Harpham, Darton Archery Director of Sales

“Red Rock Archery is a new retail distributor relationship for us, but they jumped right into the top 10 percent of our dealers. They’re on track to do over 1,000 dozen arrows this years. Gabe’s customer service is simply phenomenal, and he knows what he’s selling. His wife is exactly the same.”

Jennifer Szmchack, Carbon Impact

“Gabe and Sis have done a lot to promote archery in this community. I honestly don’t think it’s a business interest. They really care. They want to see our sport grow.

.Jim Law, President, Grand Mesa Bowmen

A bit about our people...

A Formula for Success: Red Rock Archery from Inside Archery magazine December 2009 by Mike Kallal

 

Jody Green was lucky to have survived. In January 1992, he was working in a friend’s new house when the boiler exploded. Thrown 26 feet into a concrete wall, Green suffered multiple injuries, including sever neurological trauma. He spent the next two-and-a-half years in and out of the hospital, endured extensive physical therapy and even underwent acupuncture treatments while relearning how to walk, talk and get some kind of life back.
 
Before the accident, Green had been an avid bowhunter. Formerly right-handed, his dominant arm hung from his shoulder, withered and still nearly useless when he visited Red Rock Archery in June 1994. He was resigned to never hunting again and had only stopped by to visit the owners, Gabe and “Sis” Lucero. Gabe persuaded him to try a low-weight compound left-handed. The string barely moved, but it moved enough to spark hope. The Lucero’s promptly made a gift of the bow.
 
Over the next several months, Gabe re-taught Green to shoot, refusing any payment for the lessons. That fall Jody Green tagged a muley gross scoring 180 inches. Would he describe himself as a loyal Red Rock Archery customer? “Nothing in this world could ever make me go anywhere else,” Green says.
 
The unusual thing about this anecdote is that it’s not that unusual when it comes to the Luceros. Similar stories of generosity and expertise have circulated through rural western Colorado archery circles for years, and word is beginning to spread.
 
Grand Junction is the largest city in Colorado west of the Continental Divide. Even so, the city’s population has only recently passed 100,000. Back in the late 1970’s, the economies of Colorado and Wyoming were heavily influences by efforts to extract petroleum from the region’s vast oil shale deposits. The collapse of the oil shale industry in the early 1980’s triggered nearly two decades of economic depression in the area. Most people looking to open a small business might have studied the economic climate and meager population of the Grand Junction area and immediately left for more prosperous towns.
 
Luckily, Gabe and Sis Lucero are not like most people.
 
Gabe Lucero was in Grand Junction as part of a field crew conducting seismic analyses across the United States when he met Sis in 1974. Originally from Lander, Wyoming, Sis was already an expert hunter and angler at the time. Gabe and Sis were married in 1978.
 
The Luceros anticipated the oil shale bust and left the petroleum industry in 1982. They opened Red Rock Archery in 1983, just a few short months after the area’s oil shale plants closed their doors for good. It was just about as inauspicious an environment for a new business as one could think of.
 
But the Luceros had a clear plan for their new archery shop, one that put the customer first, delivered superior service and made archery both fun and accessible. Despite the region’s economic woes, Red Rock Archery grew steadily. In 1992, Red Rock Archery relocated from Grand Junction to a converted warehouse in nearby Clifton, a Grand Junction suburb characterized by an abundance of light industry. In recent years, a dramatic increase in natural gas mining has northwestern Colorado and southwestern Wyoming booming once again. Red Rock Archery is as busy as ever, and the Luceros are actively considering an expansion.
 
Having served the community for a quarter century, Red Rock Archery has seen a generation of the area’s bowhunters, 3D enthusiasts and target shooters grow up at the store. Archers in their 20’s will tell you they’ve been customers all of their lives.
 
The store’s atmosphere is more that of a familiar tavern than a full-service retailer. People typically begin showing up soon after the doors open. Walk-in traffic is dominated by regular customers, many of whom are likely to have dropped in just to socialize. The location isn’t out of the way by any means, but there’s little through-traffic passing by. The point is that people regularly take the trouble to visit Red Rock Archery because they enjoy spending time with like minds in a relaxed environment that’s become a hub of interaction for a variety of outdoor activities.
 
Gabe and Sis are equal partners in all aspects of the store’s operation. There are several part-time staff members, but the Luceros handle most of the workload themselves.
 
Sis is both soft-spoken and straightforward with a clear idea of what she wants her customers to experience at Red Rock Archery. “I want people to have fun here,” she explains, “to feel like they’ve learned something and gotten a good deal.”
 
Patrons expressing reservations at having a woman tune their bow or check their form need only consider the impressive wall-hangers and field photos of big game trophies Sis has taken with her bow. They can also talk with one of the many people who have benefited from her attention. This woman is a true bow hunter, mechanic and instructor.
 
Sis maintains distinctly different ways of working with men and woman who are new to archery. “If a man enjoys himself, his ego will likely take over for motivation.” She says. “A woman might be more timid, not as confident of her potential. I want to make sure she understands that with patience and practice, she can do every bit as well as any guy.”
 
Sis’ husband is a different sort of character altogether.
 
Gabe clearly has the good fortune of loving his work and the never-ending task of helping people find satisfaction in archery. As Gabe explains, “If people aren’t having a good time, pretty soon they’ll find something better to do.”
 
Gabe’s sense of humor is well known. When providing bow-repair estimates to new customers, he frequently tells them, “Well, it should be less than a grand.” And he’ll ask out-of-town bowhunters to bring running shoes on hunts he’ll be guiding so they can outrun the owner of the land where they’ll be trespassing.
 
What Gabe and Sis do share is the commitment to a thoroughly consultative approach to sales and service.
 
“We want to take our time in talking with people and figuring out what they’re after,” says Gabe. “If someone’s been in before, we want to know their name and remember a little something about them. It’s important for us to make the customer feel welcome and comfortable. That’s how we’d want to be treated. Besides, it only takes a tiny bit of reluctance for someone to leave their wallet in their pocket.”
 
Red Rock Archery runs minimal advertising. Retail sales and pro shop service are its dominant cash streams, and Gabe is a true master at both. There’s no doubt intelligence, interpersonal skills and integrity are essential for long-term success in any commercial endeavor, but the Luceros lead their staff by demonstrating these qualities in an especially conscientious and ruthlessly consistent way that keeps the operation friendly, as well as profitable.
 
“Red Rock Archery is our number one retail distributor. They have been for quite a while for a couple of reasons,” says Darton Archery Director of Sales Ted Harpham. “They carry a wide selection of our bows, and Gabe is one of the best bow mechanics I’ve ever seen. When he puts our bow in a prospect’s hands, we’re confident that it’s going to be a bow that suits their needs, fits them personally and is tuned perfectly. The people at Red Rock Archery know what they’re doing, and Gabe’s got this easygoing way about him. It’s hard to define, but it puts peoples at ease. I think it’s a big factor in how Red Rock Archery has been able to increase sales of Darton products every year we’ve worked together, and the feedback we get from our retail customers confirms this.”
 
Don’t get the idea Red Rock Archery is a one-trick pony. It also ranks in the top 10 percent among dealers for a number of other brands.
 
One of those brands is Carbon Impact, and Carbon Impact’s Jennifer Szmchack echoes Harpham’s perspective. “Red Rock Archery is a new retail distributor relationship for us, but they jumped right into the top 10 percent of our dealers. They’re on track to do over 1,000 dozen arrows this years. Gabe’s customer service is simply phenomenal, and he knows what he’s selling. His wife is exactly the same.”
 
More and more of Red Rock Archery’s revenue comes from beyond the geographic boundaries of the local markets-from farther than can be driven in a few hours. Incredibly, Red Rock Archery is building a far-reaching client base with no marketing platform other than word of mouth.
 
“We had one of our bow owners call the factory with a problem,” Harpham says. “Even though he was 600 miles from Red Rock Archery, that’s where we sent him. He called back to say he went there, problem solved and he’d never go anywhere else. Dealers like that are just incredible assets to the manufacturer.”
 
Gabe’s reputation as a world-class bow mechanic is well deserved, widely shared and growing. When industry professional and bowhunters like big-game legend and multiple-world-record holder Archie Nesbitt are either directing clients to or sending their own hunting rigs for service and tuning at Red Rock Archery, it says something about the quality of service. Gabe has an exceptional eye for detail and an intuitive grasp of the most complex archery technology. He’s as passionate about archery as the most rabid stick-slinger (with a personal collection exceeding 300 bows of varying design), and this enthusiasm reinforces his desire to help every client get the best performance their tackle will provide.
 
“I had to hunt with Gabe before I really appreciated why Red Rock Archery is in the top 10 percent of our retail distributors,” shares Tru-Fire CEO Steve Tentler. “I’ve never met anybody who’d go as far to make sure you were all setup and that you had a great hunt.”
 
If there’s one unique resource Red Rock Archery leverages, it’s their proximity to large populations of huntable animals. Ten big game species are found in Colorado, and trophy specimens of nine have been tagged within a 150 mile radius of Red Rock Archery. Throw in some of the most spectacular mountain and high-desert scenery in the world, and you’ve got a great shot at drawing bowhunters from all over-people who’ve broken this, bent that or simply want to check their sights on an indoor range before going out on their hunt.
 
Many of those who visit Red Rock Archery for a quick repair find themselves returning again whenever possible. As Harpham explains, “The thing that’s always impressed me the most about Gabe is his ability to take what could be a one-time encounter and make that customer a long-term client.”
 
A lifelong bowhunter and flyfisherman with 25 years of serving hunters, Gabe is well acquainted with the booking agents, outfitters, guides and private landowners who also cater to sportsmen. Those ties have proved to be an important part of Red Rock Archery’s success, as well as a boon to local outfitters.
 
“People part with good money to hunt with us,” says Mike Lawson of Trophy Class Outfitters. “They only have so many days, and they don’t want to spend two or three of them waiting for a bow to be repaired. Half-fixed is even worse. Red Rock Archery has always bent over backwards for us, and it’s a load off my mind to know I can count on Gabe, Sis and their people to get it right quickly so my client can get back to hunting. They’ve come in after hours, before hours – basically whatever it took to get the job done. Gabe makes it easier for me to run my business, so I send people his way as often as I can. I don’t know how you put a value on having somebody like Red Rock Archery to work with. I really don’t.”
 
Development of the local market still gets attention. Red Rock Archery recognized the value of promoting our sport in the educational system early in the history of the business. The Luceros began by visiting schools and performing various demonstrations. As their organization grew, they invested in an array of youth equipment, and Red Rock Archery now regularly hosts groups of junior and high school adolescents through the Grand Mesa School District’s “Life Experiences” curriculum. The students are given a practical lecture on safe and effective technique, then divided into teams for an informal target shooting competition. Losers sweep the lanes.
 
“It’s a good feeling to introduce young people to archery,” Gabe reflects. “Over the years, quite a few of them have come back to the store on their own or with their parents, bought bows and become regular shooters. Sometimes, it’s the kids that get the parents involved.”
 
Red Rock Archery also supports fraternal organizations like the Grand Mesa Bowmen. President Jim Law is quick to laud the Luceros for their many contributions. “Gabe and Sis have done a lot to promote archery in this community,” he says. “I honestly don’t think it’s a business interest. They really care. They want to see our sport grow. For last year’s winter league, our club paid nothing. Red Rock Archery only charged the shooters for lane time. The funds were used to purchase prized that were raffled off.”
 
“We ran the league competitively in the past, but people went at it too aggressively,” Gabe explains. “We needed to get things back on a more friendly level. Archery’s a recreational business for us. If people aren’t enjoying themselves, we won’t be in the business for long.”
 
Exceptional customer care, quality equipment service and ensuring that archery stays enjoyable have proven to be a formula for success at Red Rock Archery. If you’re ever in the Grand Junction area, stop in and say “hi” to Gabe, Sis and their legion of regular customers. Whether you take advantage of the shop’s many resources or jus pay a friendly visit, you’re welcome at Red Rock Archery.

Meet the team...

Gabe and Sis are equal partners in all aspects of the store’s operation. There are several part-time staff members, but the Luceros handle most of the workload themselves.

ALT NAME

Sis and Gabe

The Luceros opened Red Rock Archery in 1983. They had a clear plan for their archery shop, one that put the customer first, delivered superior service and made archery both fun and accessible to all ages. By all measures they have succeeded.