Yellowstone camping offers the perfect way to explore this stunning natural attraction. With the park’s large size and the multiple Yellowstone campgrounds to choose from, vacationers have plenty to choose from when it comes to location and facilities. From primitive Yellowstone camping to relatively modern setups, you can be assured of finding the best campgrounds for your vacation.
Camping in Yellowstone National Park is a true adventure for vacationers, and if you’re bringing your own recreational vehicle, two camping facilities provide everything needed for an exceptional RV camping experience: the Yellowstone Park KOA and Yellowstone Grizzly RV Park, both located in West Yellowstone, Montana, just outside the park’s boundaries.
If you’re coming in via the North Entrance, there are several options for camping in Yellowstone National Park. Tower Falls Campground is open mid-May to late September. This popular campground fills up quickly and sites are on a first-come, first-served basis. The pine tree-lined campground is ideal for tent camping and small RVs. Restrooms facilities with vault toilets are available. Nearby, you will find a general store for supplies and Roosevelt Lodge that offers a restaurant, horseback tours, and stagecoach rides.
Mammoth Campground is five miles from the northern entrance and open year-round. The site has 85 campsites, five of which are handicap accessible. Tent pads are in place for 51 sites with the remaining sites suited for RVs. Restrooms with potable water are available, and generators are also allowed at Mammoth. This is a great location for outdoor exploring, as you can easily hike on the nearby trails or go fishing along the banks of the Gardner River.
Slough Creek Campground is open from late May until late October. This popular campground is located along the banks of Slough Creek. Small generators are allowed. Camping sites are primitive and located in an open meadow or under a treed canopy. Potable water and vault toilets available on-site, though the nearest major amenities, such as restaurants, are eight miles away.
One of the best options for Yellowstone campgrounds near the southern entrance is Lewis Lake Campground. This area is located near the shore of the lake on a tree-lined hill and has a picnic area, restroom facilities, and vault toilets. In the central area of the park, Yellowstone campgrounds include Canyon Campground and Fishing Bridge RV Park, both situated near Yellowstone Lake.
Madison Campground, located fourteen miles from the West Entrance into Yellowstone National Park, is open from May to October. The campground is near the Firehole, Gibbon, and Madison rivers, and it’s one of the most popular places to stay in Yellowstone. The facilities at Madison Campground include a sanitary dump station, but the campground does not have showers or utility hook-ups. Advance reservations for groups or individuals are recommended.
Grant Village Campground, located 22 miles from the south entrance into the park along the southwestern rim of Yellowstone Lake, opens from June through mid-September and is a wonderful place to stay. This large campground is deep in the woods, and the facilities at Grant Village Campground include pay showers, restaurants, stores, and coin laundry within a half-mile of the campground. Grant Village has no utility hook-ups but does provide a sanitary dump station nearby. Advance reservations are recommended.
Additional Yellowstone camping facilities are available within the park providing partial to full facilities. These campgrounds include Bridge Bay to the east, the central sites at Norris, Indian Creek to the north, and Pebble Creek in the northeast. Availability at seven of the Yellowstone campgrounds is on a first-come, first-serve basis. These campgrounds include Lewis Lake, Slough Creek, Tower Fall, Mammoth, Pebble Creek, Norris, and Indian Creek. This system ensures that you can usually get a campsite even without advance reservations, though it’s best to show up early in the day.
Campfire regulations when camping in Yellowstone National Park allow only charcoal and wood fires within fire rings. Check at the entrance to the park about any fire restrictions enforce once you arrive at Yellowstone National Park, and be sure to check with the US Forest Service staff on-site if you have any questions about safety or regulations during your stay.
Top image: jeffgunn (flickr)