12 Best Campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park

Sign stating 1 mile to Norris Campground in Yellowstone

Are you planning a camping trip in Yellowstone but are feeling overwhelmed by all the options? Are you trying to figure out how to pick the best campground for you?

If so, this guide is here to help!

Yellowstone National Park has so much to do, from exploring the great geyser basins to waterfall hiking. And like the things to do, there’s no shortage of places to stay in Yellowstone either.

Camping in Yellowstone allows you to stay close to all the best things to do, save money, and immerse yourself in Yellowstone’s natural landscape.

In this post, you’ll find an overview of the 12 best campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park, plus tips on reserving a campsite, when to camp in Yellowstone, and essential things to know before your trip.

Important Note
Due to the severe flooding in Yellowstone National Park in June 2022, some roads remain closed. However, as of July 2, 93% of the roads in the park are open and the temporary “Alternating License Plate System” is no longer in effect.

To learn more about what’s open in Yellowstone, read the flood recovery page on the Yellowstone website.

Are you looking for more ideas for your trip to Yellowstone? Check out these posts!

This post may contain affiliate links, where I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Read more in this disclosure policy.

Yellowstone National Park At-A-Glance

Before diving in, here are a few highlights to help you plan your trip:

  • Best Time to Visit: Summer is a great time to visit thanks to warm weather and all park amenities being open, but it is also the most crowded time of year. Avoid crowds by visiting in September or early October.
  • Where to Stay: Yellowstone has eight lodges inside the park, plus several campgrounds. The Old Faithful Inn and Canyon Lodge are my favorites, both close to all the most popular places to see in the park. Outside the park, look for hotels in West Yellowstone, Montana.
  • How to Get There: The closest airport is in West Yellowstone (WYS), serviced by both United and Delta Airlines. Other major airports in the region include Jackson Hole (JAC), Bozeman (BZN), and Salt Lake (SLC). Use Skyscanner to browse flights and find the best price.
  • How to Get Around: The easiest way to get around Yellowstone is by car. Use Rentalcars.com to browse deals on rental cars or rent an RV or campervan with Outdoorsy.
  • Best Self-Guided Tour: My favorite way to learn more about the park is with GyPSy Guides, a narrated self-guided tour perfect for road trips and scenic drives. The Yellowstone Guide and the Yellowstone/Grand Teton Bundle both provide incredible commentary and detail about the history and geology of Yellowstone.
  • Don’t Forget: Be sure to get an America the Beautiful National Park Pass ahead of time. This $80 pass is valid for 12 months and get you into all 400+ national park sites (including both Yellowstone and Grand Teton!).

Yellowstone National Park Campsites Overview

The 12 campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park are managed by two separate entities: the National Park Service and Yellowstone National Park Lodges.

Five of the 12 campgrounds in Yellowstone are managed by Yellowstone National Park Lodges (the company that owns the lodges inside the park). Reservations at these campgrounds are made via the Yellowstone Lodges website.

These campgrounds include Bridge Bay, Canyon, Fishing Bridge RV Park, Grant Village, and Madison.

The National Park Service manages the remaining seven campgrounds. Reservations for these campgrounds are made via Recreation.gov.

These campgrounds include Indian Creek (FCFS), Lewis Lake (FCFS), Mammoth, Norris, Pebble Creek, Slough Creek, and Tower Fall (FCFS).

Before diving into the details of each campground, here’s a quick overview of the 12 campgrounds available inside Yellowstone National Park.

Campground2022 DatesReserveSitesToiletsShowersDump Site
Bridge Bay5/20–9/5Yes432FlushNoYes
Canyon5/27–9/18Yes273FlushYesYes
Fishing Bridge5/27–10/8Yes346FlushYesYes
Grant Village6/3–9/11Yes430FlushYesYes
Indian Creek6/10–9/11No70VaultNoNo
Lewis Lake6/15–10/14No84VaultNoNo
Madison5/6–10/16Yes278FlushNoYes
MammothYear-RoundYes85FlushNoNo
NorrisTBDYes111FlushNoNo
Pebble Creek6/15–9/25Yes25VaultNoNo
Slough Creek6/15–10/12Yes16VaultNoNo
Tower FallTBDNo31VaultNoNo

Do you have to reserve campsites in Yellowstone?

Most campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park accept reservations in the summer. Bridge Bay, Canyon, Fishing Bridge, Grant Village, Madison, Mammoth, Norris, Pebble Creek, and Slough Creek are the campgrounds that accept reservations.

If you don’t want to make a reservation, a handful of campgrounds operate on a first-come, first-served (FCFS) basis. However, in the busy summer season, these campgrounds fill every day, and you’ll need to arrive early to secure your campsite.

If possible, I highly recommend reserving a campsite in Yellowstone National Park.

Given Yellowstone’s short camping season (essentially late May to late September), campsites are in high demand. If you don’t make a reservation, you may end up camping further outside the park if you cannot get a first-come, first-served campsite.

RVs in the distance at a campground in Yellowstone

How to Book Campsites in Yellowstone National Park

Depending on the campground you choose, there are two different ways to make a reservation.

Booking Campgrounds via Yellowstone National Park Lodges

If you want to reserve a site in Bridge Bay, Canyon, Fishing Bridge, Grant Village, or Madison, you’ll make your reservations through Yellowstone National Park Lodges. Here are some important things to note for these campgrounds:

  • Reservations for campgrounds booked via Yellowstone National Park Lodges open on the 5th of the month 13 months in advance. For example, for trips in July 2023, you can book starting on July 5, 2022, at midnight mountain time.
  • If you’re visiting on the weekend in the summer, book as far in advance as possible. In-demand dates, like weekends and holidays, book up far in advance. If you can, I recommend booking a year in advance when reservations open for the best selection.
  • If you’re flexible with dates, you may be able to book 3 to 6 months out. For those willing to camp in Yellowstone on weekdays or in May or September, you may be able to book campgrounds without as much notice.
  • Specific campsites are assigned at check-in. You aren’t able to select a site in advance.

Booking Campgrounds via Recreation.gov

If you want to reserve a spot in Mammoth, Norris, Slough Creek, or Pebble Creek, you’ll make your reservations through Recreation.gov. Here are a couple of essential things to note for these campgrounds:

  • Reservations for campgrounds booked via Recreation.gov open on a rolling 6-month basis. For example, a campsite reservation for July 1, 2023, opens on January 1, 2023, at 8 AM mountain time.
  • Book these campgrounds as soon as reservations open six months out. These three campgrounds managed by the National Park Service book up very quickly. For the best selection, create an account on Recreation.gov in advance and be ready to book at 8 AM on the day reservations open for your trip.
  • Pick your campsite ahead of time. On Recreation.gov, you book a specific campsite. Be prepared to secure the correct type of site for your set-up (tent-only or RV). I recommend picking out a couple if the campsite you had your eye on is booked.

Recreation.gov Reservation Tip
Campgrounds on Recreation.gov get booked quickly. I recommend adding a campsite to your cart right away when reservations are released. You can hold a campsite in your cart for 15 minutes before it is released. During that 15 minutes, I go back and check if I can find a more desirable site. If I can, I’ll add that one to my cart. If not, I will book the one I’ve already added to my cart.

How do you get a first-come, first-served campsite at Yellowstone?

The first-come, first-served campgrounds include Indian Creek, Lewis Lake, and Tower Fall. Pebble Creek (which does accept reservations) also designates a portion of its campsites as first-come, first-served.

These campgrounds fill in the early morning hours during the summer season. When you arrive, you’ll need to wait in line at the campground entrance until the campground host can assign you an empty campsite.

You can track historical fill times here.

If you can’t get a campsite in Yellowstone, I recommend using The Dyrt to find a campground outside the park.

Tents at Bridge Bay Campground in Yellowstone

Best Time for Camping in Yellowstone National Park

The best time to camp in Yellowstone is from late May to mid-September. 

Nearly all (11 out of 12) of the campgrounds in Yellowstone are only open in the summer and early fall. Each campground has its open operating dates, but most are open from late May until late September.

The only campground in Yellowstone open year-round is Mammoth Campground near the North Entrance. Campsites here are first-come, first-served between October 15 and May 1.

Read More: The Best Time to Visit Yellowstone

Tips for Camping in Yellowstone

  • A camping reservation in Yellowstone National Park does not cover your park entry fee. I highly recommend purchasing the America the Beautiful National Park Pass before your trip. This pass gets you into Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, plus 400 more national park sites! Get your annual national park pass here for only $80.
  • Senior National Park Pass Holders can get a discount at all campgrounds except Fishing Bridge RV Park. If you’re a US resident over the age of 62, you can get a lifetime national park pass for a one-time fee of $80. This pass covers entry to every national park for the rest of your life, plus get you discounts on in-park activities and campgrounds! Get your America the Beautiful Lifetime Senior Pass here.
  • There are only RV hookups at Fishing Bridge RV Park. You’ll find campsites here with full hookups for electricity, water, and sewer. 
  • Dump stations are only available at specific campgrounds. You’ll find dump stations at Bridge Bay, Canyon, Fishing Bridge, Grant Village, and Madison.
  • Generators are only permitted in seven out of the 12 campgrounds. You can only run generators at Bridge Bay, Canyon, Fishing Bridge, Grant Village, Madison, Mammoth, and Norris between 8 AM and 8 PM. You may not run generators at Indian Creek, Lewis Lake, Pebble Creek, Slough Creek, or Tower Fall.
  • Campsites for RVs 30+ feet in length are very limited. You’ll need to check the restrictions and max lengths for each campground before making a reservation. I recommend booking at Fishing Bridge RV Park for those with Class A motorhomes.
  • Fire restrictions can happen in the summer. Typically from July through September, the park may limit when and where you can have fires. These restrictions include wood and charcoal fires in campgrounds. If you’re visiting in the summer, I recommend bringing a propane stove to cook your food.
  • Yellowstone National Park is in bear country. Protect wildlife by storing all food, trash, and scented items (including toothpaste, deodorant, and sunscreen) inside the food locker at your campsite. You can read more here about bear safety while camping in Yellowstone.
  • Pets are allowed in campgrounds but are not permitted on hiking trails and cannot be left unattended. Therefore, if you plan to bring a pet, you will need to plan for someone to stay with them at the campsite during the day if you plan to hike. Read more about pets in Yellowstone National Park.
  • Cell service is limited in most areas of the park. Be sure to download your campground details or take a screenshot before arriving at the park.

Looking for more tips on what to pack for your trip? Check out my guides on the best hiking gear, what to pack for a road trip, and essential camping gear for all my favorite gear picks and tips to make packing for your trip a breeze!

Best Yellowstone Campgrounds That Are Centrally Located

If you’re looking for the perfect campground close to Yellowstone’s main attractions, like Old Faithful, Grand Prismatic Spring, and Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, these three campgrounds are the best fit for you!

Canyon Campground

  • Best for: Hikers and wildlife watchers who want a central location near Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone and Hayden Valley
  • Managed by: Yellowstone National Park Lodges
  • Reservations: Yes
  • 2022 Operating Dates: May 27 to September 18
  • Sites: 273
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Flush
  • Showers: Yes
  • Dump Station: Yes
  • What’s Nearby: Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, Hayden Valley, Mount Washburn, Canyon Village
Tents in Canyon Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Located a mile from the ultra-scenic Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, Canyon Campground is one of the most popular campgrounds in Yellowstone. The campsites are surrounded by a lodgepole pine forest, giving the sites a more intimate feel.

Campsites here range from tent-only sites to 40-foot RV sites. Each camp comes with a fire pit and picnic table, plus easy access to drinking water and flush toilets. Guests can also enjoy two free showers included in their nightly campground rate!

Campers at Canyon Campground can also enjoy the stores, restaurants, and visitor center in Canyon Village within walking distance.

Book your stay at Canyon Campground.

Read More: 15 Best Hikes in Yellowstone National Park

Madison Campground

  • Best for: Central access to the most popular areas of the park, like Old Faithful and Norris Geyser Basin, and for avid fishers
  • Managed by: Yellowstone National Park Lodges
  • Reservations: Yes
  • 2022 Operating Dates: May 5 to October 16
  • Sites: 278 (62 tent-only sites)
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Flush
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: Yes
  • What’s Nearby: Grand Prismatic Spring and the Midway Geyser Basin, Madison River Flyfishing, Firehole River Swimming Area
Rainy campsite in Madison Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Located halfway between West Yellowstone and Old Faithful, Madison Campground provides the perfect location for those wanting to explore all of Yellowstone National Park.

The Madison River runs near the campsite, giving plenty of opportunities to see bison and elk near camp. The nearby river also makes this camp a popular spot amongst fishers.

Campsites here tend to be on the smaller end, so RVs feel a bit close. That said, this campground can still accommodate RVs up to 40 feet in length. Tent campers can book a site in the dedicated tent-only loop for a bit more space.

While there are no showers at Madison Campground, all guests have access to a fire pit and picnic table at each campsite, plus flush toilets and drinking water.

Its location close to West Yellowstone also provides plentiful dining options on a short drive away.

Book your stay at Madison Campground.

Are you planning a national park trip but don’t know where to start? Get my free 28-page national park ebook where I break down everything you need to know to visit all 63 USA national parks.

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Norris Campground

  • Best for: Central access to much of the park and walkability to Norris Geyser Basin
  • Managed by: National Park Service
  • Reservations: Yes
  • 2022 Operating Dates: TBD
  • Sites: 112
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Flush
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: No
  • What’s Nearby: Norris Geyser Basin, Artist’s Paintpots, Gibbon Falls, Museum of the National Park Ranger
Bison walking through Norris Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Norris Campground is located along Grand Loop Road, only a short walk away from the largest geyser basin in the park: Norris Geyser Basin. In addition, the campground is located near a large meadow, providing plenty of opportunities to see wildlife like bison. 

There are limited campsites here that can accommodate RVs over 30 feet (only 7 out of the 112 sites). Campers here can enjoy the fire pit and picnic table at each site, along with drinking water and flush toilets.

There are no showers available at Norris Campground.

Norris Campground previously operated as a first-come, first-served campground. However, the park service has stated that Norris Campground is moving to reservation-only going forward. The campground was closed in 2021, and it is still to be determined if the campground will be open in 2022.

Read more about Norris Campground.

Best Campgrounds in Yellowstone Near South Entrance

If you’re looking for a campground close to Old Faithful or plan to spend time in Grand Teton National Park, consider picking one of these four campgrounds in the southern part of Yellowstone.

Grant Village Campground

  • Best for: Campers who want access to decent amenities in a central location to both Yellowstone and Grand Teton
  • Managed by: Yellowstone National Park Lodges
  • Reservations: Yes
  • 2022 Operating Dates: June 3 to September 11
  • Sites: 430
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Flush
  • Showers: Yes
  • Dump Station: Yes
  • What’s Nearby: West Thumb Geyser Basin, Yellowstone Lake, Old Faithful, Grant Visitor Center
Tent in Grant Village Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

The second-largest campground in Yellowstone, Grant Village Campground, is located in Grant Village in the southern part of the park. Its location makes it easy to get around south Yellowstone, notably Yellowstone Lake, West Thumb Geyser Basin, and Old Faithful.

Tucked away in a lodgepole pine forest, Grant Village Campground has a picturesque location along the lake. The campground can accommodate anything from a tent to a 40 foot RV.

Campers can enjoy the amenities found in Grant Village, like restaurants, a gas station, stores, and a visitor center. Each campsite comes with a fire pit and picnic table, plus access to flush toilets, drinking water, and a dump station. The nightly rate also includes two free showers!

Book your stay at Grant Village Campground.

Fishing Bridge RV Park

  • Best for: RV campers that want full RV park amenities
  • Managed by: Yellowstone National Park Lodges
  • Reservations: Yes, available 13 months out
  • 2022 Operating Dates: May 27 to October 8
  • Sites: 310
  • Hookups: Yes, electricity, water, and sewer
  • Toilets: Flush
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: Yes
  • What’s Nearby: Yellowstone Lake, Hayden Valley, Mud Volcano, Lake Village
RVs lined up in Fishing Bridge RV Park in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Fishing Bridge RV Park is the only campground in Yellowstone to have electrical, water, and sewer hookups. This amenity-filled campground is only available to RV campers due to frequent grizzly bear activity (no tent camping allowed).

It’s located along Yellowstone Lake is perfect for accessing both Old Faithful and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. Situated only a few minutes from Lake Village and Lake Yellowstone Hotel, guests can enjoy access to several restaurants and shops only a short drive away.

The campground is undergoing an extensive renovation ahead of the 2022 season. This renovation will provide larger sites, more parking, an updated dump station, and more shower and laundry facilities.

A nice bonus, two showers are included in your nightly campground rate!

Book your stay at Fishing Bridge RV Park.

Bridge Bay Campground

  • Best for: Those looking for a campground near Yellowstone Lake and its water activities
  • Managed by: Yellowstone National Park Lodges
  • Reservations: Yes
  • 2022 Operating Dates: May 20 to September 5
  • Sites: 432
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Flush
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: Yes
  • What’s Nearby: Yellowstone Lake, Hayden Valley, Mud Volcano, Lake Village
Tents at Bridge Bay Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Bridge Bay Campground is located along Yellowstone Lake, close to Fishing Bridge RV Park. It provides an excellent opportunity for those looking for a more affordable option than Fishing Bridge who don’t need access to hookups. Bridge Bay is also the largest campground in Yellowstone National Park!

From the campground, guests are rewarded with views of the lake and the Absaroka Range in the distance. Its location near the Bridge Bay Marina makes this campground a popular choice amongst anglers and boaters.

Only a few miles away, campers can enjoy all the amenities of Lake Village, including restaurants, a general store, shops, and more. You can also rent boats or take a tour from the nearby marina.

Each campsite is equipped with a fire ring and a picnic table. All guests have access to a dump station, flush toilets, and drinking water.

Book your stay at Bridge Bay Campground.

Lewis Lake Campground

  • Best for: Those wanting a first-come, first-served campground between Yellowstone and Grand Teton
  • Managed by: National Park Service
  • Reservations: No
  • 2022 Operating Dates: June 15 to October 14
  • Sites: 85
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Vault
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: No
  • What’s Nearby: Lewis Lake, Yellowstone Lake, Grant Village, Lewis Falls, West Thumb Geyser Basin
Tent and picnic table at Lewis Lake Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Located in the southernmost part of Yellowstone National Park, Lewis Lake Campground is a quiet first-come, first-served campground on the shores of Lewis Lake.

The boat ramp in the campground allows guests to take their canoes, kayaks, or motorboats out of Lewis Lake!

The campground’s location only 8 miles from the South Entrance makes it an excellent option for those who also plan on spending a significant amount of time in Grand Teton National Park.

Lewis Lake Campground can accommodate some smaller RVs and walk-in tent camping. Like other campgrounds, each site has a fire pit, picnic table, drinking water access, and vault toilets. Lewis Lake is a more primitive campground.

Read more about Lewis Lake Campground.

Read More: 7 Best Campgrounds in Grand Teton

Best Campgrounds at Yellowstone Near the Northern Entrances

If you’re looking for campgrounds closer to the areas like Mammoth Hot Springs and Lamar Valley, consider these five campgrounds instead. Most of these cater more towards tent campers.

Mammoth Hot Springs Campground is the only campground in Yellowstone open year-round.

Mammoth Campground

  • Best for: Camping in Yellowstone in the off-season or staying near the northern park entrance
  • Managed by: National Park Service
  • Reservations: Yes, reservation-only from 5/1 to 10/15
  • 2022 Operating Dates: Year-round
  • Sites: 85
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Flush
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: No
  • What’s Nearby: Mammoth Hot Springs, Mammoth Historic District, Albright Visitor Center, Boiling River
Truck at a campsite in Mammoth Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Mammoth Campground is the only campground in Yellowstone that is open year-round. The lower elevation makes this area more accessible in the winter season. The campground provides excellent opportunities to spot elk and bison, particularly during the fall elk rut.

Campsites at Mammoth Campground can accommodate anything from a tent to a 40-foot RV. However, sites for Class A RVs are limited. Only RVs up to 30 feet in length are allowed in the winter.

All campsites have a fire pit and picnic table, plus access to flush toilets and drinking water.

Campers can enjoy the nearby amenities in Mammoth, such as several restaurants, a visitor center, shops, and hiking only walking distance from the campground.

The campground operates as reservation-only during the summer months (from May to mid-October) and first-come, first-served the rest of the year. Typically the campground does not fill during the first-come, first-served season.

Book your stay at Mammoth Campground.

Indian Creek Campground

  • Best for: Tent-campers looking for a first-come, first-served campground away from the hustle and bustle of other parts of Yellowstone
  • Managed by: National Park Service
  • Reservations: No
  • 2022 Operating Dates: June 10 to September 11
  • Sites: 70
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Vault
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: No
  • What’s Nearby: Mammoth Hot Springs, Osprey Falls, Norris Geyser Basin
Tent and picnic table at Indian Creek Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

This smaller campground located along Grand Loop Road between Mammoth and Norris is best suited for tent campers. The sites are cozy here, tucked into wooded areas off the road.

You’ll find stunning views of the Gallatin Mountains and Electric Peak from the campground. 

Indian Creek Campground is more primitive than other sites in Yellowstone, making it a better fit for tent campers. However, roughly half the sites can accommodate an RV up to 30 feet in length.

The quiet campground offers access to a fire pit and picnic table at every site, plus drinking water and more primitive vault toilets.

While a bit further away from the action, those who stay in Indian Creek are only a short drive away from all the amenities offered in Mammoth Hot Springs Historic District.

Read more about Indian Creek Campground.

Pebble Creek Campground

  • Best for: Those looking for a reservable campground close to wildlife in Lamar Valley
  • Managed by: National Park Service
  • Reservations: Yes (also has some first-come, first-served sites)
  • 2022 Operating Dates: June 15 to September 25
  • Sites: 27
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Vault
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: No
  • What’s Nearby: Lamar Valley, Soda Butte Creek Fishing, 
Sign stating to be bear aware at Pebble Creek Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Pebble Creek Campground is a more isolated and primitive stay than many other campgrounds in Yellowstone. Its location near the Northeast Entrance is excellent for visiting Lamar Valley but further away from most activities in Yellowstone

This campground is slower, quieter, and more serene. Campers can enjoy the nighttime sounds of the babbling creek and wolves howling in the distance.

While RVs are allowed here, this campsite tends to be better for tent campers or those in smaller Class B vans. The campground offers picnic tables, fire pits, drinking water, and primitive vault toilets.

In addition to the reservable sites, Pebble Creek Campground also offers some first-come, first-served campsites.

Book your stay at Pebble Creek Campground.

Slough Creek Campground

  • Best for: Those looking for a reservable campground to escape crowds and explore Lamar Valley
  • Managed by: National Park Service
  • Reservations: Yes
  • 2022 Operating Dates: June 15 to October 12
  • Sites: 16
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Vault
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: No
  • What’s Nearby: Lamar Valley, Slough Creek Trail
Tents at Slough Creek Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Like Pebble Creek Campground, Slough Creek Campground is a remote, primitive campground. This campground is further away from the road, making it an excellent spot for a quiet mountain getaway near Lamar Valley.

You’ll have plenty of opportunities to spot wildlife here like bison and elk.

It’s a bit more challenging to get here, particularly for larger RVs. The campground lies at the end of a two-mile dirt road, making it best suited for tent campers and those in Class B RVs.

Campers have access to a picnic table and fire pit at their campsite, drinking water, and vault toilets.

There are few amenities nearby as this campground is remote and isolated. If you’re looking for a getaway close to wildlife viewing, pick Slough Creek Campground. Stargazing here is also great!

Book your stay at Slough Creek Campground.

Tower Fall Campground

  • Best for: Tent campers looking for a first-come, first-served campground near Lamar Valley and Dunraven Pass
  • Managed by: National Park Service
  • Reservations: No
  • 2022 Operating Dates: TBD
  • Sites: 31
  • Hookups: No
  • Toilets: Vault
  • Showers: None
  • Dump Station: No
  • What’s Nearby: Horseback Riding at Roosevelt Lodge, Lamar Valley, Mount Washburn, Blacktail Plateau Drive, Tower Fall
Tents at Tower Fall Campground in Yellowstone
Source: National Park Service

Tower Fall Campground is located along Grand Loop Road, near the Tower-Roosevelt junction. While less remote than the previously mentioned campgrounds in Lamar Valley, Tower Fall Campground is still relatively primitive. 

This first-come, first-served campground is best suited for tent campers or those in Class B RVs as it can’t accommodate any RVs larger than 30 feet. 

Each campsite comes with a fire pit and picnic table, plus access to drinking water and vault toilets.

You’ll find Tower General Store and Roosevelt Lodge only a short drive away. Popular park attractions like Lamar Valley and the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone are also within a 30-minute drive.

Read more about Tower Fall Campground.

Backcountry Camping in Yellowstone National Park

If you’re looking to explore off-the-beaten-path, backcountry camping in Yellowstone is a great option! There are 293 maintained backcountry campsites in Yellowstone.

Backpackers are required to get a backcountry permit year-round. During the peak backpacking season from May 15 to November 5, backcountry permits are available online via Recreation.gov or in-person on a walk-up basis.

Read more here about backcountry camping in Yellowstone National Park.

Where to Stay When Yellowstone Campgrounds Are Booked

If you find campgrounds in Yellowstone are full during your trip, consider staying in hotels outside of the park instead. Typically, accommodation outside the park doesn’t fill up as far in advance.

Staying outside the park tends to be budget-friendly but does add a bit of commute time to get to popular attractions in Yellowstone.

These are the best hotels near Yellowstone National Park:

  • 1872 Inn, an updated adults-only hotel with 18 guest rooms only minutes to the park entrance in West Yellowstone
  • The Evergreen, a mountain-inspired lodge with 17 guest rooms in the heart of West Yellowstone
  • Explorer Cabins, resort-style cabins with 50 guest rooms and an indoor pool, perfect for families
  • Yellowstone Park Hotel, a more luxurious hotel with 66 guestrooms, an indoor pool, and a fitness center located a few minutes outside West Yellowstone
  • Yellowstone Basin Inn, a quaint bed and breakfast with 14 guest rooms and a complimentary buffet breakfast a few miles north of downtown Gardiner
  • Park Hotel Yellowstone, a historic hotel with nine guest rooms and fire pits in downtown Gardiner, walking distance to Roosevelt Arch and the North Entrance

Read more here about the best lodges inside Yellowstone and the best Airbnbs near Yellowstone.

Fire roars at a campsite in Yellowstone National Park

Frequently Asked Questions About the Best Yellowstone Campground

What is the most popular campground in Yellowstone?

Thanks to its central location and long season, Madison Campground is the most popular campground in Yellowstone. From Madison campground, you are only 16 miles to Old Faithful and 25 miles to Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.

Which campground should I stay in Yellowstone?

Grant Village Campground is one of the largest campgrounds in Yellowstone, offering 425 sites. With flush toilets, showers, and dump stations, Grant Village is a great, centrally-located option for tents, trailers, and RVs alike.

How hard is it to get a campsite at Yellowstone?

It can be challenging to get a campsite in Yellowstone. Most campgrounds are reservation-only, opening reservations 6 to 13 months in advance. Reservations for these campgrounds fill up quickly, so you should book as far in advance as possible.

Which Yellowstone campgrounds have RV hookups?

Fishing Bridge RV Park is the only campground in Yellowstone that offers electricity, water, and sewer hookups. This campground is only available to trailer and RV campers and does not accept tents.

Is it safe to tent camp in Yellowstone?

Camping in a tent in Yellowstone is very safe. Most campgrounds are in developed, front country areas with campground staff and park rangers on duty. However, proper food storage is vital while tent camping in Yellowstone.

Do Yellowstone campgrounds have showers?

Only a quarter of Yellowstone campgrounds have shower facilities. You’ll find showers and laundry facilities at Canyon Campground, Fishing Bridge RV Park, and Grant Village Campground.

Final Thoughts on the Best Campground in Yellowstone

Yellowstone National Park is a beautiful place for a camping trip. From sites near popular attractions like Old Faithful to those more private sites near Lamar Valley, you’ll have a wide selection of places to stay.

The 12 best campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park:

  1. Canyon Campground
  2. Madison Campground
  3. Norris Campground
  4. Grant Village Campground
  5. Fishing Bridge RV Park
  6. Bridge Bay Campground
  7. Lewis Lake Campground
  8. Mammoth Hot Springs Campground
  9. Indian Creek Campground
  10. Pebble Creek Campground
  11. Slough Creek Campground
  12. Tower Fall Campground

If you want to learn more about Yellowstone National Park, check out these posts!

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