BEST CAMPG ROUNDS IN YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK

by James R
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Yellowstone National Park was established in 1872 and is the country’s first national park. Yellowstone National Park, at over two million acres in size, is large enough to support its own diverse ecosystem and a diverse range of dramatic landscapes.

The most notable of these landscapes are Yellowstone’s hydrothermal features, which include hot springs, geysers, and fumaroles. Few other places in the world have as many hot water attractions as Yellowstone. With so much to see and do in this vast national park, camping in Yellowstone is the best way to see and do it all.

Yellowstone can be an overwhelming experience, taking more than two hours to drive from the South Entrance to the North Entrance. Staying more than one night is essential for a satisfying Yellowstone adventure, which is made easier by the park’s numerous campgrounds.

Every campground in Yellowstone, which stretches from Grant Village in the south to Mammoth Hot Springs in the north, provides access to bucket-list adventures.

With our list of the best campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park, you’ll be able to find the perfect spot to pitch your tent.

Norris Campground

Norris Campground, located in Central Yellowstone, is a national park-operated campground with 100 non-electric campsites available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Many of the campsites at Norris are neatly tucked away among lodgepole pines, where the park’s native bison have occasionally seen roaming. Each campsite has a fire ring and a picnic table, as well as access to food storage boxes, flushing toilets, and potable water.

Throughout the summer, Park Rangers host evening campfire programs at Norris Campground. A one-mile hiking trail leads directly from the campground to the fuming Norris Geyser Basin. The majority of the campsites at Norris are best suited for tents and small trailers, with a few exceptions accommodating RVs up to 50 feet in length.

The Museum of the Park Ranger, which is also located within the campground, is a quick and entertaining side trip.

Grant Village Campground

The Grant Village Campground is one of Yellowstone’s largest campgrounds, with over 400 campsites for tents, trailers, and RVs. Long-term visitors regard it as the best campground in Yellowstone because it is the closest to shower facilities.

Others prefer Grant Village Campground because of its lodgepole pine surroundings and proximity to other park attractions. Popular attractions to visit within a short drive of the campground include the West Thumb Geyser Basin, Yellowstone Lake, and the many amenities of Grant Village.

The Grant Village Campground is non-electric, and each campsite has a picnic table and fire ring, as well as easy access to flushing toilets and potable water. Grant Village is a popular campground, with all 430 sites frequently filling up during the season. The campground is run by a concessionaire and reservations can be made up to a year in advance.

While not all sites at Grant Village Campground can accommodate RVs, the maximum length allowed for those that can is 40 feet.

Grant Village, located less than a mile from the campground, has a full-service restaurant, gas station, post office, and general store selling groceries and souvenirs. Throughout the summer, park rangers lead hikes at the nearby West Thumb Geyser Basin.

Madison Campground

The concessionaire-operated Madison Campground, which has over 270 non-electric campsites that can accommodate tents, trailers, and RVs, is a popular overnight spot for a variety of reasons. Fly-fishing enthusiasts can’t get enough of the Madison River, which is named after the campground and offers the best fishing conditions in the spring and fall. Madison Campground is the closest to Yellowstone’s Lower, Upper, and Midway Geyser Basins for those interested in the park’s hydrothermal wonders.

Madison Campground is the closest to Yellowstone’s West Entrance and the amenity-rich town of West Yellowstone, which is a great place to stock up on camping supplies. All overnight visitors to Madison Campground have access to restrooms with running water, and each campsite has a fire pit and picnic table. Reservations can be made online or over the phone up to a year in advance, and are highly recommended for the summer season.

 Mammoth Hot Springs Campground

Mammoth Hot Springs Campground is the northernmost campground in Yellowstone and the only one that is open all year. The National Park Service operates Mammoth, which has 85 non-electric campsites that are available on a first-come, first-served basis and can accommodate tents, trailers, and RVs.

Mammoth Hot Springs Campground provides easy access to Mammoth Hot Springs, which is known for its unique travertine terraces. Other nearby attractions include the Boiling River, a hot spot in the Gardner River that offers one of the park’s only opportunities to soak near a hydrothermal feature.

At Mammoth Hot Springs, all campsites are non-electric and have flushing toilets and potable water. Wildlife sightings are common in the campground, including elk and bison.

The Mammoth Hot Springs Historic District, located not far from the sagebrush steppe that defines the campground, offers a variety of modern amenities, including the Mammoth Terrace Grill, General Store, and Albright Visitor Center.

Canyon Campground

There are numerous routes to explore from the Canyon Campground in central Yellowstone. Canyon Campground, which has 270 sites ranging from hiker/biker only to 40-foot RV-accessible, is run by a concessionaire and is completely non-electric.

The entire campground is set in an aromatic pine forest, and each campsite has a fire pit and picnic table, as well as easy access to potable water and flushing toilets.

Visitors can find laundry and shower facilities, a well-stocked general store, and an interesting Visitor Education Center in nearby Canyon Village.

The real draw of Canyon Campground, on the other hand, is its central location. Many of Yellowstone’s best hiking trails, including the stunning Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, are within a short drive of the campground.

 Slough Creek Campground

The Slough Creek Campground, run by the National Park Service, is located in Yellowstone’s far northeast corner. This more remote area is ideal for wolf watchers, avid anglers, and a wide range of wildlife enthusiasts.

Despite being off the beaten path and a fair distance from Yellowstone’s main attractions, the 23 non-electric campsites at Slough Creek Campground fill up quickly during the summer season.

Slough Creek’s campsites are best suited to tents and small trailers. Each location has a picnic table and a fire ring, as well as potable water and basic restroom facilities. While it is a long drive from the Slough Creek Campground to Old Faithful, the adjacent Lamar Valley has plenty to explore and is often less crowded.

Anglers can often be found along the shore of Slough Creek and in the surrounding meadows. The Slough Creek Trailhead is located at the campground’s entrance and makes for an excellent day hike or overnight adventure.

The night at Slough Creek is noticeably quieter than at the larger campgrounds in the park, as well as darker, allowing for spectacular stargazing and glimpses of the Milky Way.

Bridge Bay Campground

Bridge Bay Campground, located in the park’s southeast region, is adjacent to Yellowstone Lake and the Bridge Bay Marina and offers more than 400 campsites with water access. While anglers and boaters frequently use this lakeside location, Bridge Bay Campground is also a popular overnight stop for anyone looking to explore this area of the park.

Bridge Bay is a non-electric campground with shaded and exposed sites that can accommodate tents, trailers, and RVs. Overnight visitors have access to flushing toilets, dishwashing stations, and potable water. The campground’s evening Ranger Programs are popular with all members of the family.

The Bridge Bay Marina, located just outside the campground’s gates, is a central hub for boat rentals, guided tours, and fishing equipment.

Bridge Bay Marina’s 432 campsites can be reserved up to a year in advance, and the campground is known to fill up frequently throughout the summer.

Tower Fall Campground

Tower Fall Campground is located in Yellowstone’s northern region, on a scenic hill overlooking Tower Creek. The campground is conveniently located near nearby attractions such as the Lamar Valley and the Yellowstone Black Canyon. Tower Fall Campground, operated by the National Park Service, offers 31 non-electric campsites on a first-come, first-served basis and is best suited for tent campers.

At Tower Fall, all overnight visitors have access to potable water and basic restroom facilities, and each campsite has a picnic table and fire ring. Overnight visitors can pick up camping supplies, fresh food, and any souvenirs they want to take home with them thanks to the Tower General Store across the street.

A six-mile trail near the campground leads to the summit of Mount Washburn, enticing day hikers with a fun trek.

 Lewis Lake Campground

This slightly less crowded campground is located in southern Yellowstone, directly between Lewis and Shoshone Lakes. The National Park Service manages the Lewis Lake Campground, which has 85 non-electric campsites available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Lewis Lake Campground, located eight miles from the park’s southern entrance, is not only a gateway into Yellowstone, but also provides quick access to some of Grand Teton National Park’s best hiking trails.

Lewis Lake’s wooded campsites can accommodate tents, trailers, and RVs up to 25 feet in length. Overnight visitors share potable water and vault toilets. The campground’s proximity to the Lewis Lake boat launch makes it simple to explore the nearby water. A ranger station is conveniently located at the campground’s entrance for those in need of a boating or fishing permit.

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