Trip cost to yellowstone and suggestions

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

freetrapper

Member
Joined
May 17, 2019
Posts
5
Location
SW Missouri
Go west young man, any one been to the Yellowstone area and kept records, looking to know what to expect for campsite availability, cost to stay around three days this summer along with two or three days at Glacier park, and the same at maybe one more park. Not worried about gas or food just how hard is it to get a spot to stay and what to expect. Thanks John
 

SeilerBird

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Posts
16,696
Location
St Cloud Florida USA
Contrary to the opinions expressed here in the past, it is very easy to find an open campsite at Yellowstone. There is a web site that lists all the campgrounds and which ones have open sites.

https://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/campgrounds.htm
 

John Stephens

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Posts
949
Location
Cape Coral, FL
freetrapper said:
Go west young man, any one been to the Yellowstone area and kept records, looking to know what to expect for campsite availability, cost to stay around three days this summer along with two or three days at Glacier park, and the same at maybe one more park. Not worried about gas or food just how hard is it to get a spot to stay and what to expect. Thanks John

I am headed to Yellowstone after visiting Deadwood, Big Horns, Cody, and Grand Tetons this June and July. Prices of campgrounds will vary, depending on what you want. The best in most people's opinions, is Grizzly in West Yellowstone, but I balked at their prices. For FHU and a pull through, they wanted around $89 per night. I reserved two weeks at Buffalo Crossing and with discounts, got $65 per night. You might be able to do better than that if you can find a spot in one of the park campgrounds. Same cost at Glacier, where we're headed after Yellowstone. Those two parks seem to command the highest prices because of their popularity.

I chose to make reservations early because we are staying for two weeks in both locations, but if you are only going to be there for 2 or 3 nights, you might be able to get something at the last minute. That depends on how lucky you feel.
 

Utclmjmpr

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 14, 2009
Posts
5,615
Location
Cedar City, UT
On the Idaho side of the park on SR20, you will find the town of Island Park.. On the east side of 20 will be a small Federal park called Buffalo that is clean and reasonably priced.>>>Dan
 

2PawsRiver

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 1, 2014
Posts
73
Location
Michigan
Went there a few years back on an planned trip without reservations......we were on motorcycles and just tenting.....cheap motel room was 4 times what we had paid anywhere else and a plot of grass to put up a tent was 40 dollars.....we got the last spot.  Couple other cyclists came in with a tent and they did not have a spot for them.  We didn't mind and they let them put their tent next to ours......beautiful area....have a safe trip
 

freetrapper

Member
Joined
May 17, 2019
Posts
5
Location
SW Missouri
Thanks to everyone for the input, the way we travel reservations are out of the question, we may stay longer in one spot than planed or stop someplace we see along the way that we did not plan on. We never actually make any plans except to pick a direction for the trip and tell the post office to hold our mail till we get home and never ever have a schedule. That would be to much like punching a clock or going back to work, its called retirement for a reason.
 

PancakeBill

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 9, 2005
Posts
6,010
Location
Benson - Tucson, AZ. West Yellowstone,MT
And when you look at the site showing openings IN the park, be aware that they all typically fill by about noon.  Some are reservable some are first come first served.
Depending on what you are traveling in will depend on suitability of some of these places.


Outside the park, this summer we are work camping in the town of West Yellowstone and our site is right by Buffalo Crossing.  There are openings right now.  It is rainy and 50's right now.  Grizzly is nice pricey.  There are 2 KOA.s south on Rt 20, still in MT.  There are F+USFS campgrounds, nmostly first come, but some reservable.  Some have electric.  In the town of West Yellowstone there are another half dozen small CG's that are just OK to Oh no. 

I have lived inside YNP for the past 10 summers, this is my first summer outside the park.  If there is some way I can help let me know.
 

AStravelers

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 14, 2016
Posts
1,590
Location
San Antonio, TX
freetrapper said:
Go west young man, any one been to the Yellowstone area and kept records, looking to know what to expect for campsite availability, cost to stay around three days this summer along with two or three days at Glacier park, and the same at maybe one more park. Not worried about gas or food just how hard is it to get a spot to stay and what to expect. Thanks John
3 days in Yellowstone and stay inside the park. 

Yes you can find open first come first serve campsites inside the park.  Have an RV preferably under 25' better yet much smaller or stay in a tent.

Process: Stay outside the park.  Day number one, drive in and be at the CG at 8am or earlier and plan on driving through the campground looking for someone that looks like they are leaving and ask them if someone has asked for this site already. You may need to drive though the CG you selected every half hour or so looking for some one who is leaving or for an open CG.

NOTE: Ignore the signs that the CG is FULL early in the morning.  In the busy season they don't take the sign down.  CG's fill by 9-10am.  Possibly earlier.  So why take the sign down.  Just one more thing for the workers to do.

If you arrive in the CG after about 10am you are probably out of luck to find an open campsite.  May and late September or October you will have better luck.
 

Isaac-1

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 3, 2016
Posts
5,855
Location
SW Louisiana
I just wanted to second the bit about RV size, the vast majority of the sites inside the park are tight for a 30 ft motorhome, not just the sites, but the access around the camping loops, remember most (all) of these campgrounds were built in an era of smaller RV's and no slides, add to this the fact that trees have grown up, and maneuvering around the Yellowstone campground is often a matter of inches of clearance.
 

jackiemac

Site Team
Joined
Feb 22, 2016
Posts
7,304
Location
Scotland
We have been lucky 2 years in a row and got a reservation in the park. Just call a few days before you go and you may get a cancellation. Midweek is usually easier too.

 

John Stephens

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Posts
949
Location
Cape Coral, FL
PancakeBill said:
Should add that the only cg in the park with any hookups is closed this season to be rebuilt from the underground up.  All new plumbing electric etc, get a res for next year.

I believe that may be the reason that Grizzly raised their prices nearly 30% this year - supply and demand.
 

freetrapper

Member
Joined
May 17, 2019
Posts
5
Location
SW Missouri
Again thanks for the feed back, we most likely will not stay in the park but somewhere close we pull a small car with us. I purposely bought under 30 ft. last time we traded and stayed with a class c for clearance reasons, we like to stay in state parks as well and they are hit and miss if your over 30 ft. along with getting up an down some ramps with my boat when we take it.
 

Isaac-1

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 3, 2016
Posts
5,855
Location
SW Louisiana
The problem with staying outside the park is the shear scale of the place.  West Yellowstone is the closest option to the park, at least to the west side attractions, the problem is given typical yellowstone driving speeds, you are a good 3 hour drive to some of the major attractions on the other side of the park, maybe much more.  If you are staying on the east side near Cody, you have an almost hour long drive just to reach the entry gates, even more if you are staying in a commercial park to the south as you must first drive through Grand Teton National Park, plus National Forest just to get to the south side of Yellowstone.  The north side is a little better, unfortunately then most of the major attractions are in the southern half of Yellowstone, so you still have to deal with considerable time on the loop road going and coming.
 

Latest posts

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
123,879
Posts
1,257,547
Members
129,680
Latest member
CrosbyDave
Top Bottom