10 Best Camping Spots In Wyoming - Wyoming Magazine

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10 Best Camping Spots In Wyoming

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Wyoming is one of the least populated states, filled with mountain ranges and foothills. The Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains meet here to provide the perfect backdrop for camping. Several Native American tribes made the area their home before westward expansion drove them out, and part of the reason they chose these lands is because of the majestic landscape.

Reasons to camp here

Because the climate is drier than in the rest of the country, there’s low humidity and not as much rainfall in general. Almost half the land in this state is government-owned, which means lots of protected lands where wildlife thrives. The state of Wyoming is filled with great camping spots. These are 10 of the best ones around.

  1. Yellowstone National Park

Artist's Paint Pots - Yellowstone National Park

Artist’s Paint Pots – Yellowstone National Park. Photo Courtesy of Al_HikesAZ

Yellowstone has over 2,000 campsites, probably because it’s the most popular national park. The more adventurous can opt for backcountry camping, while a dozen different campgrounds feature more civilized campsites that feature certain amenities like bathrooms and showers. Trails wind through the park, so hiking is a favorite past time for campers, and of course, no trip to this park would be complete without a visit to Old Faithful. Because July is the most popular month, campers who want to avoid crowds should opt to camp here during a less busy season.

  1. The Grand Teton National Park

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

Grand Teton National Park. Photo Courtesy of Latham Jenkins

Grand Teton National Park has species of plants and animals that date back to prehistoric times. People who want to connect with their own primal nature feel right at home here. Backcountry camping is allowed year round, but only with the proper permits. Tent campers are drawn to the smaller Jenny Lake campgrounds where only tents are allowed and only 49 campsites are available. The park also has 350 site reserved for recreational vehicles, so RV campers are welcome. The park has lots of hiking trails at all levels of difficulty, and many of them are very easy for inexperienced hikers.

  1. Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area

Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area in southern Montana.

View from Devil’s Overlook. Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area in southern Montana.

Photo Courtesy of Jimmy Emerson, DVM

With world-class fishing and wild horses that still run free, the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area offers a look at the west as it once was. The area is a favorite for campers. There are 5 different campgrounds in the park with 100 campsites. The majority of those sites are free, so those on a tight budget will want to check this place out. The park features some historic ranches that have been completely preserved, and visitors often get glimpses of Big Horn Sheep. Fishing is allowed in certain areas of the park, and trout are in abundance in the Bighorn River.

  1. Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area

Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area

Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area. Photo Courtesy of DaylilyFan

Divided between two states, Wyoming and Utah, the Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area is a popular place for campers. This recreation area is located in the larger Ashley National Forest. The region is known for its big fish and its ancient rocks, some of which feature petroglyphs. Like at Bighorn, trout fishing is excellent here. The area features 43 different campgrounds with over 700 campsites along 360 miles of the Green River shoreline. Primitive and backcountry camping are allowed. Those who prefer to be a little more secluded would be wise to take advantage of this. With an abundance of fossils, this area should be on every natural history enthusiast’s bucket list.

  1. Hawk Springs State Park

Hawk Springs Reservoir

Hawk Springs Reservoir

This site is a great place for birders to go camping. The area has a blue heron, blue and green-winged teals, gadwalls, pintails, wood ducks, and great horned owls. The park is relatively small, and features only 24 campsites. Comfort stations with showers and restrooms make it easy for tent campers to clean up. A beach provides a place to enjoy the warmer weather during summer months, and ramps mean easy accessibility to the water. Playgrounds make this park a good choice for campers who are bringing kids. While there’s nothing as visually interesting here as a geyser or petroglyphs, it’s a relaxing natural area where campers can get away and immerse themselves in nature at its finest.

  1. Sinks Canyon State Park

Popo Agie River - Sinks Canyon State Park

Popo Agie River – Sinks Canyon State Park. Photo Courtesy of ┬áMr. ehaus

Sinks Canyon State Park is named for a geologic formation near the mouth of the canyon it is situated in. At “The Sinks” formation, the river vanishes underground. Waterfalls and cascades flow from the Wind River Basin, which then flows into the Yellowstone. From conifer forests to meadows sprinkled with Aspens, this area hosts an abundance of wildlife. Wildflowers and ruggedness meet here to create a dazzling display of nature. All the campsites here offer access to the hiking trails and the river. Only primitive camping is allowed, so those with RV’s should look elsewhere for accommodations. Fire pits, tables, and pit toilets are all that is provided. There are two different campgrounds: Sawmill Campground and Popo Agie Campground.

  1. Glendo State Park

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Glendo Reservoir in the Glendo State Park

Glendo State Park is an extremely popular spot for people who like to go water-skiing, fishing, and boating. The camping areas here are nice. They have shade trees and lake access, but the ground is not exactly level and sites are exposed in windy conditions. There are nine different areas to camp and almost 300 sites, so there are lots of choices when it comes to selecting a favorite spot. Beach access is nice, although the lake does a rock and gravel shoreline. This is a great southern Wyoming camping spot for people who want to get out on the water during the day and sleep under the stars at night.

  1. Buffalo Bill State Park

Buffalo Bill State Park

Buffalo Bill State Park. Photo Courtesy of fritzmb

At Buffalo Bill State Park, expect to be surrounded by mountains. Two developed campgrounds welcome people to come and explore the area named for one of the most famous names in Wyoming’s history. This park has two regular camping areas and one additional group camping area designated for RV campers only. Like in the rest of Wyoming, fresh mountain air and beautiful natural landscapes are what draw people to this area. The wild west history associated with this place helps to spark the imagination while basking in nature. Buffalo Bill used to guide people on tours through this area.

  1. Boysen National Forest Campgrounds

Wind River Indian Reservation

Wind River Indian Reservation. Photo Courtesy of J. Stephen Conn

Boysen State Park lies in the midst of the Wind River Indian Reservation. Local Big Horn Sheep herds dot the landscape, and fish are abundant in the waters of Wind River. Overnight camping is allowed at five different sites: Lower Wind River, Upper Wind River, Brannon, Tamarask, and Tough Creek. In total, there are about 200 campsites here that feature grass, shade trees, and geological features that will capture the imagination. About half the sites can be reserved to guarantee a spot. The shoreline spans 76 miles, and lots of people come here for various water sports.

  1. Medicine Lodge Archaeological Site

Medicine Lodge State Archaeological Site

Medicine Lodge State Archaeological Site in northern Wyoming is a history buff’s dream. A large sandstone cliff highlights hundreds of Native American petroglyphs and pictographs that date back to well over 10,000 years ago. A library and a visitor center means educational opportunities galore. The site allows RV camping and tent camping, and it features 27 different campsites with picnic tables and fire rings. Animals are abundant here: elk, deer, moose, and even mountain lions are frequently spotted. There are over 100 species of birds here and lots of small mammals. The site offers horseback access to hundreds of miles of trails, so campers who are looking for a place to ride their horses will find a great base camp here.

 

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