Yellowstone Camping spots to enjoy America's First National Park

Yellowstone Camping spots to enjoy America's First National Park

Yellowstone National park is 3,471 square miles so it's safe to say, Yellowstone camping is abundant. Campers can choose to stay both inside and nearby the park and are able to choose from a variety of different types of camping. 

Up front we do want campers to be aware that wherever you choose to camp, the Yellowstone ecosystem is teaming with wildlife from tiny pikas to bears, elk, and bison. Please be prepared for camping within the range of the wildlife and know how to properly store food and keep your distance.

Do you want to stay clean and comfortable? Opt for RV camping. If you have experience and are interested in getting off the beaten path, Yellowstone does allow permitted access to their backcountry. For something in between, you can choose to tent camp at a designated, drive-in campground that’s closer to resources and civilization. Regardless of what you choose, this list will have something for you. 

Yellowstone camping undoubtedly inspired Banner & Oak's Yellowstone hat. As the first national park, established in 1872, we wanted to create something reminiscent of the various wonders, animals, sites, and adventures contained therein. Enjoy your adventure!

Tom Miner Campground

Tom Miner Campground National Forest Sign, a great spot for Yellowstone Camping.

Tom Miner Campground is only 17 miles from the Gardiner entrance of Yellowstone. This Yellowstone camping contains 16 RV and tent sites managed on a first-come, first-serve basis. There’s drinking water, toilets, and benches available. 


These grounds have been described by campers as being off the beaten path. Since the site resides under a beautiful fir tree forest, there is plenty of shade. Also, there is a trailhead attached to the campground called the Petrified Forest Trail. 

Lily Lake

Lily Lake Campground is a serene, remote, and very private campground only minutes away from Yellowstone National Park. The site is free (donations are accepted) and a 14-day stay limit is enforced. Lily Lake offers campers plenty of time and affordability to bask in the glory of lake-side views. 

This campground is located off the Beartooth Highway which is only accessible during the late spring and summer. This location is fairly remote beyond Cooke City, the one established town. Please pack with this in mind.

Note that this is dispersed, wild camping. Campers have the choice of driving or walking in. There have been reports of phone service available at Lily Lake, but no WiFi. As a remote site you will not have access to toilets, drinking water, showers, or trash cans so please, pack it out! Pets are allowed but be aware of wildlife in the area.

Yellowstone RV Park

Yellowstone river at Yellowstone RV Park, the perfect spot for comfortable Yellowstone camping.

Keen on camping right on the Yellowstone River? Well, here’s a perfect way to do it (and in comfort, too!). Gardiner’s Yellowstone RV Park is a peaceful way to experience Yellowstone National Park without dealing with the potential hustle-and-bustle of getting camping within the park. The RV park is located just 1 mile from the North entrance of the National Park.

At this site, campers have the choice between RV camping and tent camping on grassy sites. Regardless, visitors will be falling asleep to the sound of the river. Clean, comfortable, and convenient, the park offers showers, laundry facilities, cable TV (for free!), restrooms, as well as sewer and water hookups. 

Madison Campground

Campground panorama form Madison Campground in Yellowstone National Park.

Just 16 miles north of Old Faithful, Madison Campground is a charming site best known for its central location and accessibility to and from all things in Yellowstone. It’s also one of the largest campgrounds in the park.

Madison Campground is beautiful in-and-of itself. It’s set in a partially wooded area with some areas overlooking Firehole River. Spring and summer bring wildflowers spread out over the camp’s open meadows. 

RV and tent camping are available at Madison. There’s no cell-service/internet, but water and wood is provided on a seasonal basis. Fires are generally permitted, but it’s always appropriate to check with your camp host for special circumstances. 

Shoshone National Forest Crazy Creek Campground

Crazy Creek campground is located about 15 miles away from Yellowstone National Park. This is a 16-unit campground with a 16-day stay limit used primarily for tent camping. The campground features a vault toilet and no potable water. 

Campers come here to be close to the park, of course, but also for the beauty of the grounds themselves. Also, the site connects hikers to Crazy Creek trail, a 1.8-mile, moderately-trafficked hike through creek-side forests and to a waterfall.