When you visit Yellowstone, there is so much to see and do that you won’t want to leave the park, even for a moment. What better way to spend your nights in the area than by camping in the park? You’ll be able to get closer to nature, and be within a short distance of all of the attractions that you want to see during your vacation. You really can’t go wrong!
You have a lot of different options for camping in Yellowstone. There are 2,178 campsites and 12 different campgrounds within the park’s boundaries. If you don’t want to stay in a campground, there are also options for backcountry camping available. Either way, no matter how you like to camp, there are plenty of options for you and your family.
We’ve assembled a list of different campsites in Yellowstone, to give you an idea of all the different options you have for camping in this beautiful park.
1. Camping Options in Yellowstone
Yellowstone offers a variety of camping experiences to suit every preference and level of adventure:
- Developed Campgrounds: Yellowstone has 12 developed campgrounds that offer different amenities, including flush toilets, running water, and even showers. The most popular ones, like Madison, Bridge Bay, and Canyon campgrounds, fill up quickly, so secure your reservation well in advance.
- Backcountry Camping: For the more adventurous, backcountry camping allows you to explore Yellowstone’s remote and less-visited areas. Obtain a backcountry permit, plan your route, and experience nature at its purest.
There is only one campground in Yellowstone that is open year-round- Mammoth. Located in the northernmost part of the park, Mammoth is in an area that tends to stay dry, leading to the migration of a lot of wildlife. The campground is located in a beautiful area, and is in close proximity to Mammoth Hot Springs, the visitor center, and Gardiner, Montana, where you can go to grab dinner and drinks outside of the park. The campground boasts 85 different sites, flush toilets, and can accommodate RVs up to 75 feet. Sites can be reserved for $20 a night.
2. Tower Fall
Tower Fall campground is located near the beautiful Tower Falls, which traverse a significant 130 feet. This campground is known as one of the best places to stay if you want to spend time in the Lamar Valley, which is always well worth a visit! The campground has 31 sites, vault toilets, and can accommodate RVs up to 30 feet long. Sites are available for $15 a night.
3. Pebble Creek
Pebble Creek is a more isolated campground, which can be difficult to find in Yellowstone! So for those of you looking for a more private camping experience, this may be a good campground to check out. This campground has incredible access to the Lamar Valley, where you can see a variety of wildlife and beautiful areas. The area can accommodate larger RVs than most other campsites. Pebble Creek has 27 individual sites and vault toilets. They can be reserved for $15 a night.
4. Slough Creek
Slough Creek is located very close to Pebble Creek, with a few additional perks. The campground allows similar access to the Lamar Valley, and also has access to fishing areas, and some years even has a wolf den in the area! The campground is slightly smaller than Pebble Creek, with 16 individual sites, and the same vault toilets. It can accommodate RVs up to 30 feet long, and can be reserved for $15 a night.
5. Lewis Lake
Lewis Lake is a favorite camping spot of fishing and boating enthusiasts. The campground itself lies near Lewis Lake, allowing for easy access to boating and fishing opportunities. The channel between Lewis Lake and Shoshone Lake is the only river in the park that is open to canoes and kayaks in the park. The campground has 85 individual sites, can accommodate RVs up to 25 feet long, and can be reserved for $15 a night.
Canyon is one of the most popular campsites in the park. This campground is located in an ideal spot, providing easy access to most of the major sites that you might want to visit. It has a laundry station, showers, and flush toilets, so there are more luxuries included than in most of the other campsites in Yellowstone! Two showers a night are included in the rate of the campsite. There are 273 individual sites, and they can accommodate RVs up to 40 feet long. Since there are more amenities, the campsites are a little more pricy, at $30 a night.
7. Fishing Bridge RV
Fishing Bridge is an RV only campsite- no tents allowed! There is no max limit of length of stay, so in theory you never have to leave! There is an RV dump site, flush toilets laundry facilities, and showers onsite. There are two showers a night included in the rate of the campsite. This is the only campground with full electrical hookups. There are 346 individual sites, which can be reserved for $47.75 a night.
Located on the incredibly beautiful Madison River, this campsite is a woodsy one that is a favorite of fishermen. Along with the fishing opportunities along the river, this campsite is a great place to spot wildlife. This is one of three campsites where you can reserve tents in groups, which can be beneficial if you are traveling with friends or family. This campground has 278 individual campsites, a dump station, flush toilets, and can accommodate RVs up to 40 feet in length. Campsites can be reserved for $25.25 a night.
2. Top Campgrounds for Your Yellowstone Experience
- Madison Campground: Nestled near the park’s west entrance, Madison Campground provides easy access to the iconic geysers and hot springs. Wake up to the soothing sound of the Madison River and embark on thrilling wildlife-spotting adventures.
- Bridge Bay Campground: Situated close to the picturesque Yellowstone Lake, Bridge Bay Campground offers breathtaking lake views and opportunities for fishing and boating. It’s the perfect spot for water enthusiasts.
- Canyon Campground: This centrally located campground gives you easy access to the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and numerous hiking trails. Enjoy the perfect blend of adventure and relaxation.
3. Camping Tips for a Seamless Experience
- Reserve Early: Yellowstone’s campgrounds are in high demand, especially during the peak summer season. Secure your campsite as soon as possible through the official Yellowstone National Park website.
- Embrace Wildlife Safety: Yellowstone is home to an array of wildlife, including bears. Follow park guidelines for storing food and scented items in bear-proof storage lockers to ensure both your safety and the animals’ wellbeing.
- Leave No Trace: Yellowstone’s pristine beauty is a treasure to be protected. Practice Leave No Trace principles, respect the environment, and leave the park unspoiled for future generations.
4. Essential Packing List
- Quality Camping Gear: Bring a sturdy tent, warm sleeping bags, comfortable sleeping pads, and cooking equipment for a cozy and enjoyable camping experience.
- Weather-Appropriate Clothing: Yellowstone’s weather can be unpredictable, so pack layered clothing to adapt to changing conditions throughout the day and night.
- Food and Water: Stock up on non-perishable food items and ample water. While some campgrounds provide potable water, it’s wise to carry extra for your adventures.
Yellowstone National Park’s campgrounds are an invitation to bask in nature’s splendor and experience the park’s profound beauty up close. Madison Campground offers a front-row seat to the mesmerizing geysers and captivating wildlife. Bridge Bay Campground enchants with its enchanting lake views and water activities. Meanwhile, Canyon Campground allows you to discover the wonders of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and embrace the serenity of the wilderness.
Whichever campground you choose, Yellowstone’s allure will leave an indelible mark on your soul. Embark on a journey of exploration, wonder, and inspiration as you delve into the heart of this natural wonderland.