Author: TMBtent

Great Glen Way Accommodation Guide

The Great Glen Way is one of Scotland’s most cherished walks. Tracing a series of spectacular lochs and Caledonian Canal, this beautiful walk takes in stunning Highland scenery, quaint villages,…

The Great Glen Way is one of Scotland’s most cherished walks. Tracing a series of spectacular lochs and Caledonian Canal, this beautiful walk takes in stunning Highland scenery, quaint villages, and brings walkers to the famous city of Inverness. While walking the route you’ll have plenty of accommodation options to suit every budget and style.

This includes the quintessential Scottish B&Bs, hotels, campgrounds, bunkhouses, and everything in between!

To help you sort through all of your options we’ve created this Great Glen Way Accommodation Guide to help you pick the best option for your trip. We’ve organized the guide to include options at each of the common stopping points along the Great Glen Way to help you pick accommodation for any itinerary you choose.

Bridge in Inverness, Scotland

 

In This Great Glen Way Accommodation Guide

 

Should I reserve my Great Glen Way accommodation in advance?

We highly recommend reserving as much of your Great Glen Way accommodation in advance as you can. While this may cut down a bit on your flexibility during the walk, it also ensures you’ll have a bed at the end of the day.

This area of Scotland is a quite popular holiday destination during the summer months, and there are many stops along the Great Glen Way that only have a few options to choose from. Although it is possible to walk the entire route without any advance reservations, we think having the peace of mind and assurance of a booking is well worth the trade-off.

As for timing, it is best to reserve your accommodation for the Great Glen Way as far in advance as you can. Generally speaking you’ll want to make a booking at least 4 – 5 months out for the more popular destinations on the route, especially Fort William and Inverness. Reservations for some of the less popular stops need not be made that far in advance, but a couple of months ahead is still recommended.

Scottish breakfast

A proper Scottish breakfast will be on the menu at many of the B&Bs along the Great Glen Way.

 

Great Glen Way Accommodation Cost

Great Glen Way accommodation cost is influenced by a number of factors. These include the time of year, day of the week, holidays, etc. You can expect to pay more for weekends during the summer and prices will be at their highest on summer holidays.

Additionally, the number of days you plan to walk the Great Glen Way in will also impact your accommodation budget for the walk. Most hikers will take between 5 – 8 days to walk the entire route. For more information on the walk, including an itinerary be sure check out this post.

Given all of these factors we think the range below provides a good, general estimate of what you can expect to spend for accommodation on the Great Glen Way:

  • B&B/Guesthouse/Hotel: £70+ (per person/per night)
  • Bunkhouse/Hostel: £40+ (per person/per night)
  • Camping: £10+ (per person/per night)

Note: For those looking for campsites along the Great Glen Way, but sure to check out our complete guide here.

In our accommodation directory, we’ve provided our recommendations for high-end, mid-range, and budget options at all of the common stopping points along the Great Glen Way. We’ve defined those categories as follows:

  • High-End: £80+ (per person/per night)
  • Mid-Range: £40-80 (per person/per night)
  • Budget:<£40 (per person/per night)

Note that not every stop along the walk will feature accommodation that fits neatly into each of the categories above. In those cases we’ve included multiple options in a specific price point based on what is available.

 

Great Glen Way Accommodation Directory

In the following section we’ve created a comprehensive guide to accommodation options at each of the stops along the Great Glen Way. Choosing your accommodation isn’t always an easy task, so we’ve distilled your options into an easy to read format with key details and recommendations for every budget.

The directory has been organized to follow the standard route along the Great Glen Way from Fort William to Inverness. 

Read the directory in its entirety or jump to a specific stopping point from the list below:

 

Fort William Accommodation

High-End: Gowan Brae Bed and Breakfast

Gowan Brea B&B has it all: welcoming hosts, a central location, beautiful views, and plush rooms. Plus, the breakfast is divine. There isn’t a better place to stay before starting you walk.

Mid-Range: Myrtle Bank Guest House

Everything about this guest house is truly magical. Set inside an 1890’s Victorian on the banks of Loch Linnhe, there’s no shortage of great views and ambiance. The service is top-notch and the price is right.

Budget: Fort William Backpackers

This friendly hostel has good facilities and tons of quirky charm. It’s set in a cozy historic house, which means that some features are a bit dated (such as the very limited number of outlets in the rooms). The hostel has a lovely lounge and communal kitchen, a very affordable continental breakfast option, and linens are provided.

 

Gairlochy Accommodation

There aren’t a ton of hotels or guesthouses to choose from in Gairlochy, but there are several excellent holiday home rentals. These can be a great option for Great Glen Way walkers as you’ll have access to a kitchen and more space than a small hotel room!

Mid-Range: Dalcomera Holiday Home

Enjoy a fully equipped kitchen, lovely garden, and great WiFi at this lovely holiday home. Located just a short distance off the Great Glen Way, this is one of our top picks for Gairlochy.

Mid-Range: Little Tigh Clovelly Holiday Home

Another excellent holiday home option in Gairlochy is the Little Tigh Clovelly house. Situated just up the main road from the Great Glen Way, this quaint home provides privacy in a quiet setting. Guests love the friendly owners and perfect location.

Budget: Dreamweavers B&B

A good budget option, one of the only B&Bs in the Gairlochy area is the Dreamweavers B&B. You’ll enjoy clean and comfortable rooms along with an excellent breakfast to set your day of right. They host tons of Great Glen Way walkers here so you’ll feel right at home!

 

Loch Lochy Accommodation

For those planning to continue on past Gairlochy on their first stage you’ll have several excellent accommodation options along the shores of Loch Lochy. You’ll enjoy peace, tranquility, and stunning views at each of the accommodation options below!

High-End: Invergloy Riverside Lodges

The beautifully design Invergloy Riverside Lodges are one of the most unique accommodation options on the Great Glen Way. Comfortable beds, helpful staff, and a great location earn these lodges high marks from guests. There is often a minimum stay requirement during the summer, but a few nights here is well worth it!

Mid-Range: Whispering Pine Lodge

A lovely and cozy small hotel on the shores of Loch Lochy, the Whispering Pine Lodge is a favorite among Great Glen Way walkers. The hospitality of the staff goes a long way to ensure that guests are comfortable and well taken care of. The deck overlooking the loch is simply stunning!

Mid-Range: Corriegour Lodge Hotel

A simple and well-appointed hotel further along the loch, the Corriegour Lodge Hotel makes a comfortable place to spend the night without breaking the bank. A private beach on Loch Lochy and incredible food are hallmarks of this wonderful hotel.

 

Laggan Accommodation

Mid-Range: Forest Lodge Guesthouse

The lovely Forest Lodge Guesthouse is ideally situated between Loch Lochy and Loch Oich along the Caledonian Canal. This is a great stopping point as you’ll have just completed the long walk along Loch Lochy. The owners are superbly friendly and the breakfast exceptions. Our top pick in Laggan.

Budget: Great Glen Hostel

For budget minded walkers or those who just appreciate a good hostel, look no further than the Great Glen Hostel when staying in Laggan. Enjoy access to a self-catering kitchen, plenty of common spaces, and even a small shop. There is also a lovely garden to sit in when the weather is good.

 

Invergarry Accommodation

High-End: Glengarry Castle Hotel

If there was ever a hotel to splurge on along the Great Glen Way, the Glengarry Castle Hotel is certainly it! This stately hotel sits adjacent to the Glengarry Castle ruins and features wonderfully appointed rooms and exquisite dining.

Mid-Range: Invergarry Hotel

The Invergarry Hotel is a wonderful place to spend the night along your walk. Located along the banks of the River Garry, here you’ll experience top notch hospitality along with beautiful grounds. The on-site restaurant has an excellent selection of local real ales perfect for the end of a long day’s walk!

Mid-Range: The North Lodge Holiday Home

For those interested in a holiday home in Invergarry, the North Lodge is your best bet. This quaint, two-bedroom home offers great value for the money in an excellent location. A full kitchen is perfect for cooking up a big post-walk meal and afterwards be sure to enjoy warm up around a roaring fire.

Invergarry, Scotland

 

Fort Augustus Accommodation

High-End: The Lovat, Loch Ness

Enjoy stunning views across Loch Ness from your room at the Lovat. Set in an old Victorian building, this family run hotel offers thoughtfully designed rooms and a great restaurant. The hotel is quiet and staff goes out of their way to ensure your comfort.

Mid-Range: Lorien House B&B

The Lorien House is a stylish B&B that is perfect for Great Glen Way walkers. As you’d expect the breakfast is excellent, the rooms clean and quiet, but what most guests rave about are the welcoming and friendly owners.

Budget: White House B&B

Comfortable beds and a good breakfast buffet are the hallmarks of the White House B&B in Fort Augustus. Combined with great free Wi-Fi and a helpful owner and you can’t go wrong for a solid budget option along the walk here.

 

Invermoriston Accommodation

Mid-Range: Craik Na Dav B&B

For an excellent B&B in Invermoriston look no further than the Craik Na Dav B&B. Extremely helpful hosts along with great breakfast and comfortable rooms make this a favorite for Great Glen Way walkers. The garden attracts a variety of beautiful wildlife as well!

Mid-Range: Glenmoriston Arms Hotel

A classic Highlands hotel, the Glenmoriston Arms will leave you feeling refreshed and like you got a true Scottish experience. Enjoy one of the hundreds of malt whiskeys available in the pub before retiring to your comfortable room.

Budget: Darroch View B&B

A great budget option, the Darroch View B&B is well located in the heart of Invermoriston. Although rooms are on the smaller side you’ll still enjoy a great breakfast and helpful hosts.

 

Alltsigh Accommodation

Budget: Lochside Hostel

Set in a secluded location on the shores of Loch Ness, the Lochside Hostel is a great option for budget conscious Great Glen Way walkers. While certainly not glamorous, you’ll find the hostel to be well-appointed with great common spaces, comfortable rooms, and you can’t beat the view!

 

Drumnadrochit Accommodation

High-End: The Loch Ness Inn

Clean, well-designed rooms and a highly-regarded restaurant make the Loch Ness Inn a top pick for hotel accommodation in Drumnadrochit. Cozier than your average hotel, there are also a wide variety of room types available making this a great option for groups walking the Great Glen Way.

Mid-Range: Woodlands Bed & Breakfast

The Woodlands B&B is one of the top bed and breakfasts in Drumnadrochit and our top pick for Great Glen Way walkers. A beautiful garden and immaculate rooms are just a few of the reasons this is a great option. Don’t forget the incredible breakfast either!

Budget: Loch Ness Backpackers Lodge

For a great budget option in the popular Loch Ness village of Drumnadrochit look no further than the Loch Ness Backpackers Lodge. The owner is incredibly friendly, the bar well-stocked, and the common spaces well cared for. There are a variety of room types to choose from as well. Highly recommended.

Loch Ness

 

 

Loch Ness (between Drumnadrochit and Inverness)

Mid-Range: Loch Ness Lodge

For those looking to split up the long stage between Drumnadrochit and Inverness look no further than the Loch Ness Lodge. Elegant rooms and and stunning views will have you wanting to stay a bit longer before heading to Inverness! The Loch Ness Lodge is truly a classic Highlands hotel that we can’t recommend highly enough.

 

Inverness Accommodation

High-End: Dionard Guest House

If you’re after one of the best breakfasts in Inverness, the Dionard Guest House might just be the perfect place for you. A warm and thoughtfully cared for guest house, you’ll feel right at home here. The lovely owners are happy to make recommendations for anything you may want to do in Inverness.

Mid-Range: Bluebell House

The Bluebell House is located in a charming old building close to all the main attractions in Inverness. Clean rooms and the friendly owner, Kenny, make this a place you’ll certainly remember. Highly recommended!

Budget: Acer Glen B&B

For a great location without breaking the bank, the Acer Glen B&B in Inverness provides a great option. Guests love the comfortable rooms, great hosts, and excellent breakfast. What else could you want?

View of Inverness, Scotland

 

What’s Next?

Check out our other Great Glen Way Resources:

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Wicklow Way | Maps & Routes

The Wicklow Way is Ireland’s most famous long-distance walk. Starting on the outskirts of Dublin in Marlay Park, the Wicklow Way covers 130 km over the course of 5 –…

The Wicklow Way is Ireland’s most famous long-distance walk. Starting on the outskirts of Dublin in Marlay Park, the Wicklow Way covers 130 km over the course of 5 – 10 days walking. Finishing in the village of Clonegal, the walk takes in the best of the Wicklow mountains while visiting countless small villages and providing some of the best walking in all of Ireland.

We’ve created this Wicklow Way map guide to help provide an overview and introduction to walking the Wicklow Way. Included you’ll find in-depth maps and navigational resources to help you understand the basics of this incredible walk.

Let’s get started.

Lough Tay on the Wicklow Way

Lough Tay, one of the many highlights of the Wicklow Way.

 

In this Wicklow Way Map Guide

 

Where is the Wicklow Way?

The Wicklow Way is located in Ireland’s Wicklow mountains, which begin just south of the capitol city of Dublin. Officially beginning in Marlay Park on Dublin’s southern edge, the walk is very convenient to get to given it’s relatively urban beginning.

From Marlay Park the route immediately begins to climb and descend through the Wicklow mountains as it makes it’s way to Clonegal. As the route progresses, the terrain shifts from the mountainous beginning to a flatter and more pastoral feel in the south. The route is traditionally walked north to south, although there is nothing to stop you from walking in the opposite direction.

The Wicklow Way is exceptionally easy to access from the rest of Ireland as well as from international destinations. Given that the route starts on the edge of Ireland’s largest city, Dublin, you’ll have no trouble reaching the start at Marlay Park. On the southern terminus of the route in Clonegal it is a bit harder to return to Dublin, although you’ll still have plenty of options.

There are busses to Dublin available in Kern and Kildavin as well as the train from Bagenalstown. All of these options will require a taxi from Clonegal to reach them.

 

Map showing the location of the Wicklow Way

Overview of the Wicklow Way. Click to enlarge.

 

Along the walk, the Wicklow Way has some of the most beautiful and varied scenery in all of the Ireland. You’ll take in beautiful mountain views and views of Lough Tay, visit the historic monastic village of Glendalough, and take in the Powerscourt Waterfall, Ireland’s tallest waterfall.

Most hikers with some experience and reasonable fitness will find the Wicklow Way to be quite manageable in terms of difficulty. There are some long days walking as well as mountainous terrain to cross, yet you are always reasonably close to civilization and never encounter extremely difficult days.

 

Glendalough

The small village of Glendalough on the Wicklow Way.

 

In general, most walkers will take between 5 – 10 days to walk the Wicklow Way. The number of days will depend on physical ability, time available, the weather, and your personal preference. The most common itinerary covers the route in 7 days, and that is what we’ve chosen to include in the Wicklow Way maps included in this guide.

Below is a common 7-stage itinerary for the Wicklow Way:

  • Stage 1: Marlay Park to Knockree
  • Stage 2: Knockree to Oldbridge
  • Stage 3: Oldbridge to Glendalough
  • Stage 4: Glendalough to Glenmalure
  • Stage 5: Glenmalure to Moyne
  • Stage 6: Moyne to Shillelagh (Boley Bridge)
  • Stage 7: Shillelagh to Clonegal

 

Interactive Wicklow Way map

The interactive Wicklow Way Way map below will allow you to zoom in on the various stages as well as view the traditional stops along the route.

 

How long is the Wicklow Way?

Most sources list the Wicklow Way as being 131 kilometers or 81 miles long. When we measure via GPS mapping we find the entire route to be just shy of that number at 128 kilometers from Marlay Park to Clonegal.

However, the exact distance of the walk will have very little practical value for the average walkers. You’ll certainly end up walking quite a bit further than the 128 km we measure, and many of the accommodation options are a short ways off the main trail. Combine that with the option to detour to attractive pubs with fresh Guinness on tap and you’ll surely end up walking well over 130 kilometers!

However, while it may not be important to know the exact distance of the walk down the last kilometer, it is a good idea of have a sense of the distance of each stage on the Wicklow Way. This will help you prepare for the walk, plan your itinerary, and provide valuable information to all walkers.

The Wicklow Way map below does just that, showing the distance in kilometers for each of the standard seven stages it takes to complete the walk. Use this map to help plan your own route and remember that the distances listed don’t include any detours or side trips!

 

Wicklow Way map with stage distances

Stage distances on the Wicklow Way. Click to enlarge.

 

Wicklow Way Elevation Profile

The Wicklow Way has approximately 4,700 meters (or  15,400 feet) of elevation gain as the walk makes its way from Marlay Park to Clonegal. Over the course of the typical seven stage itinerary that averages out to approximately 670 meters of elevation gain per stage. While certainly nothing to sneeze at, this amount of elevation gain should be manageable for the majority of walkers.

However, it is important to remember that all of that elevation gain isn’t perfectly spread out across the entire walk. The northern, more mountainous sections contain much of the total elevation, although the southern stages shouldn’t be underestimated. The most difficult day in terms of elevation gain is likely to be the second stage, from Knockree to Oldbridge which entails climbing to White Hill, the high point on the Wicklow Way.

Other notable stages for their total amount of elevation include Stage 4 from Glendalough to Glenmalure which entails a climb up a steep saddle as well as Stage 5 from Glenmalure to Moyne, which contains lots of elevation spread out over undulating hills.

 

 

For more information on what each stage is like in terms of total elevation gain and loss, take a look at the Wicklow Way elevation profile below. You’ll be able to get a sense of what the various climbs on the route are like, and how they compare to other stages on the walk.

For those not familiar with reading an elevation profile, you’ll find elevation on the left (y-axis), and distance on the bottom (x-axis). Each blue dot on the route corresponds with a stop along the walk, with the stop name listed at the top.

The steepness of the line between any two points reflects the steepness of the trail for that particular stage. The distance between the two points shows the length of the stage.

For example, you can see that the stage from Moyne to Shillelagh is rather long in terms of distance, while the walk from Knockree to Oldbridge has lots of elevation gain.

Wicklow Way Elevation Profile

Wicklow Way Elevation Profile. Click to enlarge.

 

Which maps should I carry on the Wicklow Way?

Overall the Wicklow Way is a very well marked route. You’ll find handy directional signage at most trail junctions and there is rarely a time the actual trail is difficult to follow. However, as with all long-distance hikes, it is best to prepared with a map or some sort of navigation.

This is especially true for sections of the Wicklow Way that intersect with other trails such as the Dublin Mountains Way which shares a short section towards the start of the hike.

We generally prefer to use a GPS map downloaded to our smartphone to navigate on trails like the Wicklow Way. This works well for trails like the Wicklow Way where it is nice to have some context of the surrounding towns and villages, especially given that your accommodation is likely to be off the track a bit in many places.

As far as apps go, we like to use Gaia GPS, although any good navigation app will work just fine.

Additionally, we highly recommend bringing a paper map for the route given that a bit of unplanned rain or sudden drop can render your smartphone useless.

There are several excellent Wicklow Way maps out there, with a few of your best bets listed below:

Ordnance Survey Ireland Maps
The Ordnance Survey Ireland Maps provide the most comprehensive set of physical maps for the Wicklow Way. You’ll need to carry three maps with you (50, 56, and 62) to cover the route at a 1:50,000 scale. Note that these maps don’t include the final kilometer of the walk into Clonegal, but we think you’ll be just fine navigating that section!

Walking the Wicklow Way: Cicerone Guidebook
Although not a formal map, this excellent guidebook from Cicerone guides is a must bring. It includes basic maps as well as detailed descriptions of the entire walk. It also features helpful accommodation lists and some interesting adjacent trails worth a walk.

Stream in the Wicklow Mountains

Have a great Wicklow Way adventure!

We hope this post has given you all the information you need to get a basic overview of the Wicklow Way. Let us know your questions or comments below. Happy trails!

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Pennine Way | Maps & Routes

The Pennine Way is surely the greatest of all of the UK’s National Trails. This notoriously difficult trail runs up the spine of Britain and is typically completed in 15…

The Pennine Way is surely the greatest of all of the UK’s National Trails. This notoriously difficult trail runs up the spine of Britain and is typically completed in 15 – 21 days walking. The route begins in Edale in the south and meanders its way north to the village of Kirk Yetholm. Along the way you’ll encounter lovely villages, stunning views, and of course the Pennine Way’s famous bogs.

This Pennine Way map guide has been designed to provide your with an introduction to the Pennine Way by providing in-depth maps, navigational resources, and more!

Let’s get started.

 

In Pennine Way Map Guide

 

Where is the Pennine Way?

The Pennine Way runs through the heart of England and even reaches into Scotland at its northern end. The walk crosses through three national parks: Peak District, Yorkshire Dales, and Northumberland. The route is traditionally walked from south to north, although it is possible to walk in the opposite direction as well.

The walk is easily reached from the rest of the UK, with Edale having good rail access from both nearby Manchester as well as Sheffield. On the northern end, Kirk Yetholm is a bit harder to reach although there is access to Edinburgh to the north as well as plenty of rail connections available in Berwick-upon-Tweed, to the east of Kirk Yetholm on the coast.

 

Pennine Way Overview Map

The Pennine Way connects Edale in the south with Kirk Yetholm in thed north. (Click to enlarge)

 

Along the route, the Pennine Way has some of the most beautiful and difficult walking of any of the National Trails. You’ll cross seemingly endless bog ridden terrain as you make your way north. However, don’t let that dissuade you from a walk along the Pennine Way!

There are nearly endless highlights along the walk including beautiful villages such as Hebden Bridge, stunning scenery such as Malham Cove and High Cup Nick, in addition to enjoying the quintessential pint upon finishing at the Border Hotel!

View of High Cup Nick on the Pennine Way

High Cup Nick is a highlight of the Pennine Way.

 

The time it takes to walk the Pennine Way varies greatly depending on your fitness, desire for long days, weather, and countless other factors. That being said, it is typically completed in 15 – 21 days, with most walker’s opting for somewhere in the middle.

Below is a common 19-stage itinerary for the Pennine Way:

  • Stage 1: Edale to Crowden
  • Stage 2: Crowden to Standedge
  • Stage 3: Standedge to Hebden Bridge
  • Stage 4: Hebden Bridge to Ickornshaw or Cowling
  • Stage 5: Ickornshaw or Cowling to Gargrave
  • Stage 6: Gargrave to Malham
  • Stage 7: Malham to Horton in Ribblesdale
  • Stage 8: Horton in Ribblesdale to Hawes
  • Stage 9: Hawes to Keld
  • Stage 10: Keld to the Tan Hill Inn
  • Stage 11: Tan Hill Inn to Middleton in Teesdale
  • Stage 12: Middleton in Teesdale to Dufton
  • Stage 13: Dufton to Garrigill
  • Stage 14: Garrigill to Alston
  • Stage 15: Alston to Greenhead
  • Stage 16: Greenhead to Once Brewed
  • Stage 17: Once Brewed to Bellingham
  • Stage 18: Bellingham to Byrness
  • Stage 19: Byrness to Kirk Yetholm

 

Pennine Way Map

Map of the Pennine Way. (Click to enlarge)

 

Interactive Pennine Way Map

The interactive Pennine Way Way map below will allow you to zoom in on the various stages as well as view the traditional stops along the route.

 

How long is the Pennine Way?

The Pennine Way is officially listed as being 268 miles long. However, in our estimation (using GPS!) we get closer to 255 miles along the route from Edale to Kirk Yetholm. Regardless, the Pennine Way is well over 250 miles and your certain to need a sturdy pair of boots to walk the entire length!

Most walker’s will agree that measuring the exact distance of the Pennine Way has little practical value. Given the number of days you’re likely to spend walking the route, you will certainly end up covering more miles than any guidebook provides. This is due to the fact that many of the accommodation options along the walk are located slightly off the trail requiring you to add a bit of distance. That combined with the countless side trips to local pubs and interesting attractions will have you adding up the miles in no time!

Regardless, we still find it helpful for itinerary planning to have a sense of the distances each stage of the walk entails. The two maps below show the distance of individual stages on the Pennine Way in both miles and kilometers. Be sure to consult them when planning your own route, just remember that these distance don’t include any side trips.

Map of the Pennine Way with distances

Map of the Pennine Way with distances in miles.

 

Map of the Pennine Way with distances in kilometers.

Stage distances on the Pennine Way in kilometers.

 

Pennine Way Elevation Profile

As the Pennine Way meanders from Edale to Kirk Yetholm the walk has approximately 40,000 feet or 12,000 meters of elevation gain! That averages out to be just over 2,000 feet of elevation gain per stage on the 19-day itinerary we presented above.

Of course, all of that elevation isn’t perfectly spaced out across the walk, although you will find that most stages do have some climbing. Some of the most notable climbs on the Pennine Way include the climb up Knock Fell out of Dufton, the steep ascent up Great Shunner Fell just outside of Hawes, and the long day of climbing from Malham to Horton in Ribblesdale.

Malham, UK

 

The high  point of the Pennine Way Way sits at Cross Fell, 2,930 feet above sea-level. You’ll reach this point between Dufton and Garrigill.

Check out the Pennine Way elevation profile below to get a sense of what each stage of the walk entails in terms of elevation gain and loss.

Elevation is shown on the left side while distance is shown on the bottom. Each blue dot represents a stop along the traditional 19-stage walk, with the stop name shown at the top.

The steepness of the line between any two points reflects the steepness of the trail for that particular stage. The distance between the two points shows the length of the stage.

 

Pennine Way Elevation Profile

Elevation profile of the Pennine Way. Click to enlarge.

 

Which Pennine Way maps should I carry?

Given that the Pennine Way is a National Trail you’ll find the route to be relatively well marked. The familiar white acorn associated with National Trails will grace signs at many trail junctions, pointing you in the correct direction. However, the sheer length and number of trail junctions you’ll encounter on the Pennine Way make having a reliable form of navigation essential.

For this reason, we always recommend that walkers bring a few map resources when walking the Pennine Way.

When we’re out on a long distance path, our general preference is to rely on GPS maps on our smartphones, and highly recommend this method for most walkers. All you need is a GPX file for the route, which is easily accessed on the National Trails website for the Pennine Way.

As far as apps go, we like to use Gaia GPS, although any good navigation app will work just fine.

In addition to digital navigation methods, we also recommend you bring a paper map or map booklet along. There is simply no replacement for a physical map, after all you never know when you may find yourself with a dead battery rendering your GPS app useless!

There are several excellent physical maps available for the Pennine Way, outlined below:

The Pennine Way Map Booklet – Cicerone Guides
In our opinion, your best bet will be to pack this excellent resource from Cicerone Guides. Their Pennine Way map booklet contains Ordnance Survey Explorer maps for the entire route, neatly organized into a small and portable booklet.

 

Pennine Way Way South & North Adventure Atlas
The Pennine Way Adventure Atlas’ are a great option for those looking for a more traditional style of map. These handy guides use OS Explorer maps, a proven navigational resource. You’ll need to pick up both the south and north versions to cover the entire Pennine Way, but it is certainly much easier than assembling all of the Ordnance Survey maps yourself.

Ordnance Survey Explorer Maps
Finally, no article on walking in England would be complete without including the required Ordnance Survey maps. These detailed maps are the quintessential maps for a detailed view of the Pennine Way. However, you’ll need to carry no less than seven individual maps to cover the length of the walk.

We’d recommend picking up one of the options above instead.

For those who insist on carrying all of the OS maps, you can pick up a complete set here.

 

Pennine Way Maps | GPS/GPX

If you are interested in getting access to the GPS data for the Pennine Way head on over to the National Trails website. Here you’ll find free downloads for the walking route.

Click here to access the free GPS data for the Pennine Way

You’ll be able to load the GPX file into the mapping software or GPS phone app of your choice!

Map of the Pennine Way on a cell phone

 

Apps and offline mapping

As mentioned above we highly recommend utilizing offline downloadable GPS maps on our smartphones to navigate while walking the Pennine Way. This is a great way to navigate on the trail as it allows you to see your progress for the day and also doesn’t require a cell phone signal (which you may not have) to display the map.

Our How to Navigate on the Tour du Mont Blanc post has all the information you need to get set up using an app for your map. Although written for a different hike, this step-by-step article will teach you how to quickly and easily turn your phone into a GPS device for the Pennine Way.

 

Have a great Pennine Way adventure!

We hope this post has given you all the information you need to get a basic overview of the Pennine Way. Let us know your questions or comments below. Happy trails!

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The Complete Guide to Camping at Carter Lake, CO

Carter Lake, a 1,100-acre reservoir near Loveland, Colorado, truly has something for everyone. It is easily accessible from the Front Range, but thanks to its 1,000 acres of surrounding wilderness,…

Carter Lake, a 1,100-acre reservoir near Loveland, Colorado, truly has something for everyone. It is easily accessible from the Front Range, but thanks to its 1,000 acres of surrounding wilderness, it feels peaceful and remote. This beautiful area is popular with families, water lovers, and adventure seekers alike. Planning a Carter Lake camping trip is the perfect way to experience this incredible landscape.

The reservoir features tons of camping options including five developed campgrounds located all along the nearly 8-mile length of Carter Lake, nearby RV and car camping sites, and even some free dispersed camping.

In this post…

 

What to Do at Carter Lake

There’s no shortage of fun activities to keep you entertained at Carter Lake. Water enthusiasts will enjoy lots of great boating, fishing, sailing, swimming, and even scuba diving! On dry land, there are great options for hiking, cycling, picnicking, and rock climbing.

Two Kayaks in the sunset at Carter Lake, Colorado

Watersport enthusiasts will love all of the activities at Carter Lake!

 

Carter Lake Campgrounds

Carter Lake stretches three miles long, with its southern end just west of Berthoud, and its northernmost tip closer to Loveland. All along this spectacular shoreline, you’ll find dozens of unique camping opportunities for both tents and RV’s.

Carter Lake’s five developed campgrounds are located along the southern, eastern, and northern shores of the reservoir. Backcountry and dispersed camping are not permitted; you must camp in a designated site at Carter Lake.

The map below shows all of the campgrounds included in this guide.

Campgrounds with a green tent icon are the developed campgrounds at Carter Lake, the blue camper trailer icon represents RV  and car camping campgrounds near the reservoir, and finally the red tent icon represents dispersed car camping options in the surrounding area.

Enjoy!

Reservations & Permits

In addition to a park entrance permit, you’ll also need a separate permit to camp at Carter Lake. Reserving your campsite online or at the Larimer County Administration Office will provide you with a camping permit.  Daily and annual entry permits can be purchased at the entrance stations located at the north and south entrances to the reservoir.

Click here for more information on park entrance permits

If you plan on camping at Carter Lake on a summer weekend, advance reservations are necessary, as the campgrounds are nearly always at capacity. It is possible to reserve a site at all five of the campgrounds through the Larimer County website or by calling 1-800-397-7795.

Reservations can be made anywhere from 180-1 day(s) in advance, but book as early as possible for summer weekends. Additionally, it’s important to note that there’s a two-night minimum for weekend bookings April-September, and a three-night minimum for holidays.

Click here to make a camping reservation at Carter Lake 

It may be possible to find a campsite at Carter Lake without a reservation if you’re camping on a weekday and/or outside of the peak summer months. If you are arriving without a reservation, you’ll need to first go to the Larimer County Administration Office to pay for your campsite and get your camping permit (1800 S. County Road 31, Loveland, CO 80537). You cannot pay for a first-come, first-served campsite at Carter Lake. The Administration Office is typically open from 9:00am-4:00pm, 7 days a week.

The only exception to this rule is if you are camping between November 1st-February 28th. If you want to make a same-day reservation during those months, you can do so online.

Camp chairs set up around a campfire at Carter Lake

Don’t forget your cooler and your camp chairs for your trip to Carter Lake!

 

What to Bring

Preparing for a Carter Lake camping trip involves more than deciding which campground best fits your needs. There is also the important job of making sure you have all the right gear you’ll need to ensure a great trip.

We’re sure you’ll already have the essentials like a great tentsleeping bags, and camp chairs, but below are some of our favorite items specifically for camping at Carter Lake:

  • Coleman Camping Stove – This camping classic is perfect cooking up campsite dinners.
  • Pop-up canopy – The sun in Colorado can be extremely strong. We recommend bringing a portable shade structure like this one.
  • Portable water container – These portable water containers are a lifesaver.
  • Cooler – A good cooler is essential to any camping trip. We can’t recommend Yeti enough!
  • Waterproof phone case-Take photos and enjoy the water without worrying about your device!

When to Camp at Carter Lake

Camping is permitted year-round at all five developed campgrounds at Carter Lake. Nighttime temperatures remain well below freezing during the winter months. For that reason, we only recommend winter camping at Carter Lake for the heartiest and most well-prepared campers out there!

Due to its elevation of 5,760 feet, mornings and evenings are routinely quite chilly even in the late spring and early fall. On the other hand, expect very hot temperatures from June-September.

Carter Lake is very popular and get can quite crowded in the peak season (April-September).

A speedboat with autumn trees in the background

It’s possible to camp at Carter Lake all year.

 

Developed Campgrounds

While all of the campgrounds at Carter Lake have plenty of amenities and are easy to get to, each offers its own unique advantages. For example, only some have water views and/or shoreline access, others are closer to the marina, and only a portion of the sites have electrical hookups.

A few important details that apply to all of the campgrounds:

  • There is a maximum group size of six people at the Big Thompson, Carter Knolls, and North Pines Campgrounds and eight people at the Eagle and South Shore Campgrounds.
  • All campgrounds allow for up to two vehicles and one camping vehicle (RV, trailer) per site.
  • RV’s can fill up water and use the dump station at the south entrance to the reservoir.
  • Cell phone service is generally available throughout the area, although there is no wifi at any of the campgrounds.

Keep reading to learn about all of the Carter Lake Campgrounds and find your perfect campsite.

Big Thompson Campground

Number of Sites: 8 sites
Fee: $20/night (weekdays), $26/night (weekends April-Sept), $30/night (holidays April-Sept)
RVs: Yes, no hookups
Reservations: Recommended during summer months. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round. Water may only be available from offsite spigots in the winter.

Click here for a map of the Big Thompson Campground

The Big Thompson Campground is located along the northeast shore of Carter Lake. It is close to the marina and the northern entrance to the reservoir.  All sites have beautiful lake views, although they are located high above the beach and require a short hike to reach the water.

With just eight sites, Big Thompson is a small campground with basic facilities. Amenities include a drinking water tap, vault toilets, and trash receptacles. Every site has its own picnic table and fire pit. There are no electrical hookups, but the pull-through sites can accommodate RVs up to 40 feet long. Campers can use the showers at the Eagle Campground, which is conveniently located just down the road from the Big Thompson Campground. Site T4 is ADA accessible.

It is highly recommended to make an advance reservation during the summer months, and especially so on holiday weekends. Reservations can be made below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the Big Thompson Campground. 

A view of the Big Thompson Campground from across the road

The Big Thompson Campground.

 

Carter Knolls Campground

Number of Sites: 7 sites
Fee: $20/night (weekdays), $26/night (weekends April-Sept), $30/night (holidays April-Sept)
RVs: Yes, no hookups
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round. Water may only be available from offsite spigots in the winter.

Click here for a map of the Carter Knolls Campground

This small campground is perched on a rocky overlook on the east side of Carter Lake. The Carter Knolls Campground is conveniently located near the swimming beach, and it’s roughly halfway between the northern and southern entrances. Although its lofty position means that it can get extremely windy at times, it also makes for fantastic views of the entire reservoir and surrounding area. It’s possible to hike down a short, steep trail to reach the waterfront from the campground.

Sites C8 and C9 are tent-only and require a short walk from the parking area. Site C5 is best suited for larger RVs, as it can accommodate rigs up to 55 feet long in a pull-through spot. The other sites (with the exception of C8 and C9) can accommodate RVs up to 20 feet long in back-in spots.

Amenities at the Carter Knolls Campground include a drinking water tap, vault toilets, and trash receptacles. All sites have a picnic table and fire pit, and there is a nice picnic pavilion located at the center of the campground. Campers can shower at the Eagle Campground, and RV’s can fill up water at the south entrance to Carter Lake.

It is highly recommended to make an advance reservation during the summer months, and especially so on holiday weekends. Reservations can be made below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the Carter Knolls Campground

The picnic pavilion with Carter Lake behind it at the Carter Knolls Campground.

The Carter Knolls Campground.

 

Eagle Campground

Number of Sites:  47 sites
Fee: $32/night (weekdays), $42/night (weekends April-Sept), $48/night (holidays April-Sept)
RVs: Yes, 50 amp electric hookups.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round.

Click here for a map of the Eagle Campground

Located across the road from the marina and near the northern entrance to Carter Lake, the Eagle Campground provides easy access to variety of activities.  This is one of the larger and more developed campgrounds at Carter Lake. Although the campground is not adjacent to the water, sites E2-E21 have lake views. The remainder of the sites are located in a lovely meadow below the road. The campground enjoys a wooded setting, which provides shade, privacy, and some shelter from the wind.

All of the sites at the Eagle Campground can accommodate RVs and provide 50 amp electrical hookups. There are back-in and pull-through sites available, and some sites can fit big rigs up to 75 feet long. Sites E23-E25 are ADA accessible pull-through sites.

Amenities at the Eagle Campground include flush toilets, drinking water, coin-operated showers, trailer parking, and a playground. All sites have a picnic table and a fire pit. The marina shop, which sells some snacks and basic items, is directly across the road.

It is highly recommended to make an advance reservation during weekends and summer months. Reservations can be made below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the Eagle Campground

A picnic table and a campsite at the Eagle Campground, Carter Lake

The Eagle Campground.

 

North Pines Campground

Number of Sites:  4 sites
Fee: $20/night (weekdays), $26/night (weekends April-Sept), $30/night (holidays April-Sept)
RVs: Yes, no hookups.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round.

Click here for a map of the North Pines Campground

The North Pines Campground is tucked away in a quiet, pretty location on the northern edge of Carter Lake. It is next to the private Carter Lake Sailing Club, the North Pines boat ramp, and the Sundance hiking trail. It’s very close to the northern entrance to the reservoir. With just four sites, it is the smallest of all of the Carter Lake campgrounds.

Although there are no electrical hookups, all four sites at the North Pines Campground can accommodate RVs. Big rigs should aim for site N3, as this is the only pull-through site and can fit RV’s up to 50 feet long. All of the sites have at least partial lake views, but site N4 has the best views and water access.

Amenities at the North Pines Campground include a drinking water tap, vault toilets, and trash receptacles. Each site has a picnic table and a fire pit. Campers can use the showers at the Eagle Campground, which is conveniently located just down the road from the Big Thompson Campground.

It is highly recommended to make an advance reservation during the summer months, and especially so on holiday weekends. Reservations can be made below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the North Pines Campground

 

South Shore Campground

Number of Sites:  51 sites
Fee: $32/night (weekdays), $42/night (weekends April-Sept), $48/night (holidays April-Sept)
RVs: Yes, 50 amp electric hookups.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round.

Click here for a map of the South Shore Campground

The South Shore Campground, located on the very southern tip of Carter Lake, is the largest campsite in the area. However, due to the fact that it is set back from the main road, it has a peaceful and remote feel. The campground is next to the South boat ramp, reservable picnic pavilions, and the Sundance hiking trail.

The campground has 45 standard electric sites and six tent-only sites that are set on a hillside overlooking the lake. The lower sites have closer water access, while the sites higher on the hill may provide better views of the area. RV’s are permitted in the standard electric sites, all of which are pull-though. Some sites can accommodate RV’s up to 60 feet long, while others are much smaller. Sites S1-S3 are ADA accessible, and sites S3, S5, S7, and S17-S21 provide the best water access.

Amenities at the South Shore Campground include drinking water, vault toilets, trash receptacles, and horseshoe pits. All sites have picnic tables and fire pits.

It is highly recommended to make an advance reservation during the summer months, and especially so on holiday weekends. Reservations can be made below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the South Shore Campground

A dirt road and RVs parked at the South Shore Campground, Carter Lake

The South Shore Campground.

 

 

Camping near Carter Lake

RV campgrounds

North Shore RV Park

Number of Sites:  7 sites
Fee: $25/night (dry site), $45/night (hookups)
RVs: Yes, 20/30/50 amp electric, water, and sewer hookups.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round.

This RV park is located just minutes from the northern edge of Carter Lake, and provides easy access to the marina and the North Pines boat ramp. The facilities are nothing fancy, but it’s a great option for RV campers seeking full hookups, or those unable to score a reservation in one of the Carter Lake campgrounds. There are also cabin rentals available on the property.

Amenities include picnic tables, fire rings, laundry facilities, and trash services. There’s a boat/RV storage area and a general store onsite, as well as a restaurant next door. Pets are welcome.

More Information

 

Car camping sites

Flatiron Reservoir Campground

Number of Sites:  36 sites
Fee: $32/night (weekdays), $42/night (weekends April-Sept), $48/night (holidays April-Sept)
RVs: Yes, 50 amp electric hookups.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round.

Click here for a map of Flatiron Reservoir Campground

Flatiron Reservoir is a small reservoir located northwest of Carter Lake. It’s another great option for tent and RV campers looking to enjoy Carter Lake, as it’s less than 10 minutes from the marina. Just like all of the developed campgrounds at Carter Lake, the Flatiron Reservoir Campground is managed by Larimer County, and the same rules apply in terms of reservations, permits, and regulations. You can use the same entry permit to access both Carter Lake and Flatiron Reservoir.

The Flatiron Reservoir Campground runs along the edge of the water and has 33 standard electric sites and three tipis. Sites F10, F12, F13, F14, F16, F18, F20, F21, F24, and F25 have the best proximity to the water. Sites F6, F8, and F19 are ADA accessible.

All of the standard electric sites can accommodate RVs, and all except for two are pull-through. Site sizes vary, so bigger rigs should check to make sure they can fit before reserving.

Amenities at the Flatiron Reservoir Campground include drinking water, vault toilets, a fishing pier, volleyball courts, and horseshoe pits. Each campsite has a picnic table and fire pit.

Click here to reserve your campsite at Flatiron Reservoir

 

Estes Park KOA

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: Varies
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Season: May 1st-October 15th

Campers willing to travel a bit further afield can reach the Estes Park KOA in less than an hour from Carter Lake. The Estes Park KOA is located east of the town of Estes Park, just above Lake Estes. Of course, the main attraction here is nearby Rocky Mountain National Park, so those looking to explore both RMNP and Carter Lake will appreciate this location.

There are a variety of accommodations at Estes Park KOA, including tent sites, cabins and several options for RV’s.

Amenities include cable tv, wifi, showers, and a dog park.

More Information

An RV in the daytime with trees in the background.

RV’s will have plenty of camping options near Carter Lake.

 

Free dispersed camping

Unfortunately, there is no free dispersed camping in the immediate area surrounding Carter Lake. However, if you’re willing to travel a bit further, there are some good options on the many acres of Forest Service land that are located about an hour west of Carter Lake, near Rocky Mountain National Park.  You can find more information about dispersed camping on USFS land here.

If you have any questions about the dispersed camping options outlined below be sure to reach out to the USF office that oversees that area:

US Forest Service Office: 303-541-2500 or 970-295-6700

Coyote Hill Road

Your first option for free dispersed camping near Carter Lake and RMNP is along Coyote Hill Road, located just outside of Estes Park. Also known as Forest Service Road 119, it is recommend to come with a high clearance 4×4 to reach the campsites. This area is located about an hour’s drive from Carter Lake.

Parachute Hill/Johnny Park Road

Parachute Hill Road and Johnny Park Road are both good options for free dispersed camping, and are about one hour and fifteen minutes from Carter Lake. To access the camping area you’ll take Highway 7, which runs between Estes Park and Allenspark to Boulder County Road 82. From here, head east towards the Johnny Park Trail before turning off on FS Road 329.

Pole Hill Road

The Pole Hill Road dispersed camping area is accessed from Highway 36 just south of Estes Park. Look for the Pole Hill Road intersection just before Highway 36 begins its descent into Estes Park. 4WD is a must here and also be sure to practice Leave No Trace principles as there have been many complaints from surrounding land owners. Keep in mind that your map application may show a shorter, more direct route from Carter Lake on a private road, but you’ll need to take one of the longer routes (either via US34 or US36) to avoid trespassing. Both of these longer routes take about an hour to reach Carter Lake.

A blue and an orange tent with sunlight coming through the trees.

Dispersed camping allows you to find more peace and solitude than at a developed campground.

 

Carter Lake Camping Must Know

Pets

Pets are welcome at Carter Lake, provided you follow a few guidelines:

  • Pets must be kept on a leash at all times (max length 10 feet)
  • Pets may not be left unattended
  • Pets are not allowed at the swim beach

 

Where to get supplies

Preparing for your Carter Lake camping trip involves more than just finding the perfect campground. you’ll also need to be sure you have all the supplies you need before heading out. Luckily, Carter Lake is well served by a few adjacent towns that have all the services you could possibly need.

You’ll find your best options to stock up on camping supplies near Carter Lake below:

  • Berthoud, CO: Located immediately to the east of the Carter Lake, Berthoud is likely your best bet for finding any last minute camping supplies. This lovely town features grocery stores, liquor stores, gas stations and restaurants.
  • Loveland, CO: Located to the northeast of Carter Lake, Loveland is the bigger of the two nearby towns and therefore has a wider range of services. You’ll find grocery stores, gas stations, outdoor shops, medical offices, and anything else you might need here.

Additionally, there is a small shop at the Carter Lake Marina and a general store at the nearby North Shore RV Park, both of which sell snacks and some basic supplies.

 

Fires

Fires are generally permitted. but only in the designated fire pits provided at all of the campsites at Carter Lake. Seasonal fire restrictions are common, however, so be sure to call 970-619-4570 or check this website before your camping trip.

 

A paved road with Carter lake in the background

Have a great trip!

That’s it!

We hope you’ve found all of this post’s information on Carter Lake camping to be helpful, and we know you’ll find the perfect campsite for your upcoming adventure! Be sure to let us know in the comments below if you have any questions or had a great time out camping!

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The Complete Guide to Camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir

The Blue Mesa Reservoir, located in Colorado’s western mountains, is spectacular place to plan a camping trip. Occupying over 9,000 acres, the reservoir is Colorado’s largest body of water. Blue…

The Blue Mesa Reservoir, located in Colorado’s western mountains, is spectacular place to plan a camping trip. Occupying over 9,000 acres, the reservoir is Colorado’s largest body of water. Blue Mesa Reservoir sits within the Curecanti National Recreation Area and is managed by the National Park Service. Planning a Blue Mesa Reservoir camping trip is the perfect way to experience this incredible landscape.

The reservoir features tons of camping options including NPS run campgrounds located all along the nearly 20 mile length of Blue Mesa Reservoir, boat camping options, nearby RV and car camping sites, and even some free dispersed camping.

No matter what kind of camping experience you’re after you’ll be able to find the perfect campground at Blue Mesa Reservoir.

Keep reading to get all the details to plan your perfect camping trip at Blue Mesa Reservoir. 

Blue Mesa Reservoir Camping Guide

 

Blue Mesa Reservoir Campgrounds

The Blue Mesa Reservoir is over 20 miles long starting just west of Gunnison, CO and extending all the way west to Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. Along this length you’ll find dozens of camping opportunities from the NPS operated sites along the reservoir shores to amenity rich RV campgrounds nearby.

Blue Mesa’s developed campgrounds are located along both the northern and southern shoes of the reservoir, as well as the various tributaries that feed into it. Those who are interested in reaching their campground by boat will have four campgrounds to choose from in addition to backcountry camping sites available along the south shore of Blue Mesa Reservoir.

The map below gives you a general sense of where each of the developed campgrounds are located at Blue Mesa Reservoir as well as their relation to the surrounding area. 

For a map of boat campgrounds at Blue Mesa Reservoir check out this section below. 

 

Blue Mesa Reservoir Campground Map

Map of campgrounds at the Blue Mesa Reservoir. Map credit NPS. Click to enlarge.

 

In addition to the overview map shown above we’ve also created an interactive map with all of the campgrounds included in this guide displayed.

Campgrounds with a green tent icon are the developed campgrounds at Blue Mesa,  the blue camper trailer icon represents RV campgrounds near the reservoir, and finally the red tent icon represents car camping options.

Enjoy!

 

Reservations

Of the ten developed campgrounds at Blue Mesa Reservoir, only the Elk Creek, Lake Fork, Stevens Creek, and the two group campsites are reservable in advance. All other campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis.  .

To make a reservation at any of the reservable campgrounds at Blue Mesa Reservoir visit Recreation.gov, below.

Make a camping reservation at Blue Mesa Reservoir here.

Camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir and in the Curecanti National Recreation Area is very popular during the summer peak season, so we highly recommend making a reservation well in advance if at all possible. If  you’re hoping to land one of the first-come, first-served campgrounds during peak season be sure to arrive early as they are very difficult to snag!

What to Bring

Preparing for a Blue Mesa Reservoir camping trip involves more than deciding which campground best fits your needs. There is also the important job of making sure you have all the right gear you’ll need to ensure a great trip.

We’re sure you’ll already have the essentials like a great tentsleeping bags, and camp chairs, but below are some of our favorite items specifically for camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir:

  • Coleman Camping Stove – This camping classic is perfect cooking up campsite dinners.
  • Pop-up canopy – The sun in Colorado can be extremely strong. We recommend bringing a portable shade structure like this one.
  • Portable water container – These portable water containers are a life saver.
  • Cooler – A good cooler is essential to any camping trip. We can’t recommend Yeti enough!
  • Blue Mesa Reservoir Map – An essential for any trip, a good map is a must. This excellent National Geographic map includes Blue Mesa Reservoir and Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.

 

When to Camp at Blue Mesa Reservoir

Only the Elk Creek Campground at Blue Mesa Reservoir is open year round. All other campgrounds are generally open starting in mid to late-May through the end of October. Campers will find that peak season for camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir generally runs from Memorial Day through Labor Day, though those who plan a trip just outside of those dates will find great weather as well.

The winter months bring very cold temperatures to this part of Colorado, and nearby Gunnison is often one of the coldest places around! For that reason, we only recommend winter camping at Blue Mesa for the heartiest and well-prepared campers out there!

Keep reading to learn about all of the developed campgrounds at Blue Mesa Reservoir.

 

Developed Campgrounds at Blue Mesa Reservoir

Elk Creek Campground

Number of Sites: 160 sites
Fee: Loop C: $16/night / Loops A & B: $16/night +$3/night if reserved, Loop D (electric sites) $22/night +$3/night if reserved.
RVs: Yes, Loop D features electric hookups
Reservations: Recommended during summer months. Click here to reserve.
Season: Open year round. Most services/facilities only open during summer months.

Elk Creek Campground, Blue Mesa Reservoir

The Elk Creek Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The Elk Creek Campground is the largest and most popular campground at Blue Mesa Reservoir. Located near the midpoint of the reservoir along the north shore, Elk Creek is well located for those who value convenience as it is just a short distance from the Elk Creek Visitor Center, Pappy’s Restaurant & Pub, boat ramp, and marina.

The campground is the only one at Blue Mesa that features electric hookups, so it is especially popular with RV campers. There are 160 campsites here, distributed between four loops. The electric sites are all located in Loop D, while Loops A and B feature walk-in tent sites adjacent to the reservoir.

Amenities at the Elk Creek Campground include drinking water, flush toilets, and showers, all of which are available during peak season.

Reservations can be made in advance for site in Loop A, B, and D, with D, while Loop C sites are all available on a first-come, first-served basis. It is highly recommended to make an advance reservation during the summer months, and especially so on holiday weekends. Reservations can be made via Recreation.gov below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the Elk Creek Campground

 

Map of the Elk Creek Campground at Blue Mesa Reservoir

Elk Creek Campground Map. Map credit NPS.

 

Lake Fork Campground

Number of Sites: 90 sites
Fee: Lower sections: $16/night / Upper & Middle Section: $16/night + $3/night if reserved.
RVs: Yes, but no hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve. 
Season: April through mid-October

Lake Fork Campground

The Lake Fork Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The Lake Fork Campgrounds sits on the far western edge of Blue Mesa Reservoir. Situated along the reservoir’s southern shore, this is one of the larger campgrounds at Blue Mesa.

The campground is split into an Upper, Middle, and Lower section, all of which can accommodate RVs. For those tent camping, there are several walk-in tent sites available in in the Upper section of the campground. Lake Fork isn’t the most idyllic campground as it is almost entirely asphalt, but you’ll have great views and great water access here.

Amenities at the Lake Fork Campground include drinking water, flush toilets, showers, and a dump station, all of which are available during peak season.

Reservations can be made in advance for the campground via Recreation.gov below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the Lake Fork Campground

 

Map of the Lake Fork Campground

Map of the Lake Fork Campground. Map credit NPS.

 

 

Stevens Creek Campground

Number of Sites: 53 sites
Fee: Loops A & C: $16/night +$3/night if reserved / Loop B: $16/night
RVs: Yes, but no hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve. 
Season: Open from late-May through late-September

Stevens Creek Campground

The Stevens Creek Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The Stevens Creek Campground is located on the eastern edge of Blue Mesa Reservoir and is the closest campground to the town of Gunnison. Situated on the reservoir’s northern shore, Stevens Creek has 53 individual campsites available.

There are three loops at the Stevens Creek Campground, A, B, and C, all of which are able to accommodate RVs. All of the sites have great views as well as access to water during the summer months, vault toilets, picnic tables, and fire grates. There is also a boat ramp at the campground, making this a popular place to camp for boaters.

Advance reservations are available for Loops A and C, while all of the site in Loop B are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Reservations can be made in advance for the campground via Recreation.gov below:

Click here to reserve your campsite at the Stevens Creek Campground

 

Cimarron Campground

Number of Sites: 21 sites
Fee: $16/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available. Medium sized RVs recommended.
Reservations: All site first-come, first-served.
Season: May through mid-October

Cimarron Campground, Blue Mesa Reservoir

The Cimarron Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The Cimarron Creek Campground does not sit directly on the Blue Mesa Reservoir, but rather is located west of Blue Mesa along Cimarron Creek. The campground sits just off Highway 50, about 30 minutes from the town of Montrose and has 21 campsites.

All of the campsites feature picnic tables, fire grates, and have access to vault toilets. Water is available from late-May through mid-September. This is a great campground for railroad lovers as it is located at the site of an old railroad town and features several informative exhibits.

All campsites at Cimarron Creek are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

 

Ponderosa Campground

Number of Sites: 28 sites
Fee: $16/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available. Medium sized RVs recommended.
Reservations: All site first-come, first-served.
Season: May through mid-October

Campsite at the Ponderosa Campground

A campsite at the beautiful Ponderosa Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The Ponderosa Campground sits on the far northern edge of the Blue Mesa Reservoir along the Soap Creek Arm of the reservoir. The campground has a much more remote feel than other options, as you’re several miles from the main highway here.

You’ll enjoy beautiful views from the campground’s 28 sites, each of which is equipped with a table and fire pit. As with most campgrounds at Blue Mesa, water is available at the campground during the summer months.

Sites at Ponderosa can accommodate both tents and medium size RVs and are all available on a first-come, first-served basis.

 

Dry Gulch Campground

Number of Sites: 9 sites
Fee: $16/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available. Medium sized RVs recommended.
Reservations: All site first-come, first-served.
Season: May through mid-October

Dry Gulch Campground

The Dry Gulch Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The Dry Gulch Campground is located along Highway 50, just east of the Elk Creek Campground and Visitor Center. With only 9 campsites, Dry Gulch is a great option for those looking for a quieter camping experience near Blue Mesa Reservoir.

The campsites are tucked into a lovely grove of Cottonwood trees which provide some great shade during the warmer summer months. You’ll have access to vault toilets and potable water during the summer here, while each site features a picnic table and fire ring. Tents and medium-size RVs are easily accommodate at Dry Gulch.

All of the campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis at Dry Gulch. We recommend getting there as early as possible during summer weekends as it does tend to fill up.

 

East Portal Campground

Number of Sites: 15 sites (10 tent-only)
Fee: $16/night
RVs: Not recommended.
Reservations: All sites first-come, first-served.
Season: May through mid-October

East Portal Campground

The East Portal Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The East Portal Campground is not a great option for those looking to explore Blue Mesa Reservoir, but it is located within the Curecanti National Recreation Area so is worth including in this guide. Situated along the Gunnison River, this small site features 15 total sites, 10 of which are tent only.

To access the East Portal Campground you’ll have to go through Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, so be prepared to pay the entrance fee. All of the sites are first-come, first-served and have access to water and vault toilets.

A great option for those looking to explore both the Blue Mesa Reservoir and Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.

 

East Elk Creek Group Campground

Number of Sites: 1 group site (up to 50 people)
Fee: $53/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available.
Reservations: Required. Click here to make a reservation.
Season: May through mid-October

East Elk Creek Group Campsite, Blue Mesa Reservoir

The East Elk Creek Group Campground. Photo credit NPS.

 

The East Elk Creek Campground is a large, group campground located just north of Highway 50 near the Elk Creek Visitor Center. There is a single campsite here that can accommodate groups of up to 50 people.

The campground is situated in a secluded grove of cottonwood trees and makes the perfect spot for a family reunion, birthday camping trip, or any other special occasion. There is a covered picnic pavilion as well as several smaller picnic tables and fire grates.

The campground can accommodate both tents and RVs and has potable water available. Reservations are a must for the East Elk Creek Group Campground and can be made via Recreation.gov below:

Click here to reserve the East Elk Creek Group Campground

 

Red Creek Campground

Number of Sites: 2 sites (1 individual and 1 group site)
Fee: Individual site: $16/night | Group site: $28/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available. Max length of 22′
Reservations: Individual site is first-come, first-served. Group site requires reservation. Click here to make a reservation.
Season: May through mid-October

Red Creek Campground, Blue Mesa Reservoir

The Red Creek Group Campsite. Photo credit NPS.

 

The Red Creek Campground at Blue Mesa Reservoir is located on the reservoir’s northern shore along Highway 50. Here you’ll be approximately 20 miles west of the town of Gunnison.

The Red Creek Campground features two campsites, an individual site as well as a group site that can accommodate up to 20 campers. The group campsite here is more secluded, while the individual site feels more like just a pull-off on the road. Red Creek can accommodate both tents and RVs, although RVs longer than 22′ are not recommended.

There is potable water available here during the summer months and both sites feature picnic tables and fire grate.

The individual campsite at Red Creek is first-come, first-served, while reservations are required for the group site and can be made below:

Click here to reserve the Red Creek Group Campsite

 

Gateview Campground

Number of Sites: 6 sites
Fee: FREE
RVs: Not recommended.
Reservations: All site are first-come, first-served.
Season: May through mid-October

The perfect campground for those seeking a bit of seclusion during their visit to the Blue Mesa Reservoir, the Gateview Campground features just 6 tent-only campsites at the far southern end of the reservoir. Gateview sits on the Lake Fork Arm of the Blue Mesa and feels far from the main body of water.

The six sites at Gateview are tent-only and have access to vault toilets and potable water.

All sites at the Gateview Campground are first-come, first-served.

 

Boat Camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir

In addition to the developed campgrounds listed in the section above, you are also able to camp along the shores of Blue Mesa Reservoir via boat. There are both established boat-to campground as well as backcountry camping available at Blue Mesa.

Read more about boat camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir in Curecanti National Recreation Area on the NPS website here.

The four established boat-to campgrounds at Blue Mesa Reservoir are shown on the map below and also outlined with brief descriptions.

Map of boat to campsites at Blue Mesa Reservoir

Blue Mesa Reservoir Boat-to campgrounds. Map credit NPS. Click to enlarge.

 

Turtle Rock Campground

Number of Sites: 3 sites
Fee: Free
Amenities: Vault toilets, tables, fire grates

The Turtle Rock Campground is located just east of the Elk Creek area and is a popular boat-to campsite. There are three sites here that all feature picnic tables and fire grates. A vault toilet is also available.

Cebolla Campground

Number of Sites: 2 sites
Fee: Free
Amenities: Vault toilets, tables, fire grates

The Cebolla Campground is located on the south shore of Blue Mesa Reservoir along the Cebolla Arm of the reservoir. There are 2 sites here which include picnic tables, fire grates, and a vault toilet.

West Elk Campground

Number of Sites: 2 sites
Fee: Free
Amenities: Vault toilets, tables, fire grates

The West Elk boat-to campground is located on the northern shores of Blue Mesa near the West Elk Creek inlet. The NPS recommend mooring boats along the western shore here to avoid submerged timber.

Lake Fork Campground

Number of Sites: 2 sites
Fee: Free
Amenities: Vault toilets, tables, fire grates

The Lake Fork Campground sits midway down the Lake Form Arm of the Blue Mesa Reservoir’s southern shore. The campground has two sites with vault toilets, picnic tables, and fire grates.

 

Backcountry Camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir

In addition to the four established boat-to campgrounds listed above, you are also permitted to backcountry camp in specified areas along Blue Mesa Reservoir. Permitted backcountry camping areas include most of the south shore of the reservoir as well as Red Creek Island.

You can view areas where backcountry camping is permitted on the map here.

For those planning to backcountry camp at Blue Mesa, be sure to follow these regulations:

  • Do not camp within 1/2 mile of bridges, public roads, or other campsites.
  • Limit your stay to less than 14 nights.
  • Always practice Leave No Trace principles.

 

Camping near Blue Mesa Reservoir

For those who arrive to find all of the campgrounds at Blue Mesa Reservoir full or who are just looking for some different options, there are plenty of nearby campgrounds.

From RV campgrounds with full hookups to great car camping and free dispersed camping on adjacent BLM/USFS land the you’re sure to find something that suits your needs.

 

RV campgrounds near Blue Mesa Reservoir

The following are our recommend RV campgrounds near Blue Mesa Reservoir. Keep reading to find your perfect RV campground.

RV Camping

 

Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch

Number of Sites: 317 sites
Fee: Varies by site and hookups.
RVs: Yes, full and partial hookups available
Reservations: Recommended.
More information

Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch is a massive RV campground located north of Blue Mesa Reservoir along Highway 50. You’ll find over 300 sites here that can accommodate just about any rig and hookup requirements.

The amenities at Blue Mesa Recreational Ranch are top notch and guests will enjoy access to two swimming pools, a fishing pond, WiFi and cable tv, and even a well-equipped game room.

This is a great option for those looking for more to do when compared to a typical NPS campground.

 

Oasis RV Resort

Number of Sites: Plenty!
Fee: $35 – $59/night depending on site and hookups.
RVs: Yes, hookups available
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
More information

The Oasis RV Resort is located along Highway 50 on the north shore of Blue Mesa Reservoir, just west of the Stevens Creek Campground. This popular campground can accommodate all sizes of RVs as well as tent-campers at the sprawling campground.

Guests at Oasis RV Resort can enjoy access to an on-site dog park, laundry facilities, cable tv, and a well-stocked general store.

 

Mesa Campground

Number of Sites: 118 sites
Fee: $29 – $88/night depending on site and hookups.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
More information

The Mesa Campground is located east of Blue Mesa Reservoir, near the town of Gunnison, CO. This is a great campground if you’re planning on exploring Hartman Rocks in addition to the Blue Mesa Reservoir.

The campground features 118 sites and can accommodate large RVs and tent campers alike. Amenities at the Mesa Campground include laundry facilities, WiFi, fire pits, and an excellent clubhouse.

 

Gunnison KOA Journey Campground

Number of Sites: Plenty!
Fee: Varies by site and hookups.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
More information

Located just 10-15 minutes from Blue Mesa Reservoir, the Gunnison KOA Journey Campground is perfect for campers looking for the convenience and amenities that come with KOA campgrounds. This is a smaller KOA compared to many, but that adds to the charm and the amenities are still top notch.

Campers will enjoy access to a shaded pavilion area, WiFi, and small shop selling essentials.

Keep in mind that the Gunnison KOA is located very close to the Gunnison airport so you can expect a bit of noise!

 

Blue Mesa Outpost

Number of Sites: 10 RV sites
Fee: $42 – $52/night depending on site.
RVs: Yes, max length of 45′
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
More information

The Blue Mesa Outpost is your best option for RV camping along the southwest section of Blue Mesa Reservoir. Situated just off Highway 50 on the western end of the reservoir, the campground has incredible water views. Blue Mesa Outpost is a small campground, with just 10 RV sites as well as room to accommodate a few tent campers.

The campground features fire pits, laundry facilities, and BBQ grills.

 

Car camping sites near Blue Mesa Reservoir

If you’re looking for car camping sites near Blue Mesa Reservoir, you’ll have many great options to choose from. We have included your best bets below and you’ll also have good luck at any of the campgrounds included in the RV section above.

Keep reading to learn more.

Blue Mesa Adventure Pods

Number of Sites: 5 ‘Adventure Pods’
Fee: $129/night
RVs: N/A
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
More Information

A unique car camping option at Blue Mesa Reservoir is to stay at the Blue Mesa Adventure Pods. The Adventure Pods are located within the Elk Creek Campground, although aren’t operated by the National Park Service. These simple structures sleep between 2-3 people and a few allow pets.

Your stay in a Blue Mesa Adventure Pod includes two paddle boards, two drink tokens at the Marina, a bundle of firewood, and access to a picnic table and fire ring.

A one of a kind experience!

 

Soap Creek Campground

Number of Sites: 21 sites
Fee: $14/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available.
Reservations: All sites first-come, first-served.

The Soap Creek Campground is a USFS campground located north of the Blue Mesa Reservoir along Soap Creek Road/Forest Service Rd #824. The campground features 21 campsites that are all available on a first-come, first served basis.

As with most USFS campground you’ll get some basic amenities like vault toilets and hand pump water. There is also a horse corral at the campground for equestrian users.

 

Red Bridge Campground

Number of Sites: 7 sites
Fee: $5/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available.
Reservations: All sites first-come, first-served.
More Information

The Red Bridge Campground is located south of Blue Mesa Reservoir off of Highway 149. This isn’t the most convenient campground for visiting Blue Mesa Reservoir, but it does sit in a beautiful location along the Lake Fork of the Gunnison River.

There are seven campsites here along with a simple vault toilet. Keep in mind that there is not potable water at the Red Bridge Campground, so we recommend bringing all that you’ll need for your trip.

 

Free dispersed camping near Blue Mesa Reservoir

Your final option for camping near Blue Mesa Reservoir is to find a free, dispersed campsite on adjacent US Forest Service or BLM land. This part of Colorado is full of public lands that offer incredible free camping opportunities.

If you have any questions about the dispersed camping options outlined below be sure to reach out to the BLM offices that oversee the specific areas, shown below:

Red Creek Road

Red Creek Road intersects with Highway 50 on the northside of Blue Mesa Reservoir. Head north along the road until you reach the USFS gate. After this point you’ll find several dispersed campsites as the road weaves its way through the National Forest.

Soap Creek Road

Located on the northern shore of Blue Mesa Reservoir just past the Ponderosa Campground you’ll find a few free dispersed campsites along Soap Creek Road. You’ll pass most of these before getting to the developed Soap Creek Campground described in the section above.

Hartman Rocks

The Hartman Rocks area is located between Gunnison and the Blue Mesa Reservoir. This area is popular with mountain bikes, hikers, and all sorts of other outdoor enthusiasts.

 

Blue Mesa Reservoir Camping Must Know

The following sections contain all the basic information you need to ensure you have a great time camping at Blue Mesa Reservoir. Before we dive in, there are a few important regulations to note:

  • Pets must be leashed at all times.
  • Fires are only permitted in the fire grates provided at the campgrounds.
  • 8 people max per campsite.
  • No more than 14 consecutive nights at a single campground during a 30 day timeframe.
  • Always store your food in your car or in an animal proof container.
  • Always practice Leave No Trace principles.

Where to get supplies

Preparing for your Blue Mesa Reservoir camping trip involves more than just finding the perfect campground. you’ll also need to be sure you have all the supplies you need before heading out. Luckily, Blue Mesa Reservoir is well served by a few adjacent towns that have all the services you could possibly need.

You’ll find your best options to stock up on camping supplies near Blue Mesa Reservoir below:

  • Gunnison, CO: Located immediately to the east of the Blue Mesa Reservoir, Gunnison is likely your best bet for finding any last minute camping supplies. This lovely town features grocery stores, liquor stores, plenty of outdoor shops.
  • Montrose, CO: Located to the west of Blue Mesa, Montrose is likely to be the most convenient option for those staying on the west end of the reservoir or who are also exploring Black Canyon of the Gunnison. You’ll find grocery stores, gas stations, outdoor shops, and anything else you might need here.

 

Have a great trip!

That’s it!

We hope you’ve found all of the information on Blue Mesa Reservoir camping in this post helpful and we know you’ll find the perfect campsite for your upcoming adventure! Be sure to let us know in the comments below if you have any questions or had a great time out camping!

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Mt. Rushmore Camping | The Complete Guide

Mt. Rushmore National Memorial is a spectacular sight to behold. The granite carved faces of Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt, and Lincoln gaze down upon South Dakota’s Black Hills, inspiring awe…

Mt. Rushmore National Memorial is a spectacular sight to behold. The granite carved faces of Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt, and Lincoln gaze down upon South Dakota’s Black Hills, inspiring awe for those who visit. A trip here is a highlight for many summer road trips, providing visitors with a sense of history, stunning scenery, and one of the most unique memorials in the world.

A visit to Mt. Rushmore is also a great way to see some of the surrounding area which includes beautiful national parks, Custer State Park, and the Black Hills National Forest. Given all that the area has to offer, we think planning a Mt. Rushmore camping trip is the perfect way to experience this part of the country.

Although there are no campgrounds at Mt. Rushmore, the surrounding area is full of excellent camping options. You’ll find everything from full-service RV campgrounds, to lovely car-camping area, and even some great free dispersed camping in the Black Hills.

No matter your preference, you’re sure to find the perfect campsite near Mt. Rushmore National Memorial.

Keeping reading to get all the details on camping near Mt. Rushmore.

Mt. Rushmore through clouds

 

Mt. Rushmore Camping Guide

 

Mt. Rushmore National Memorial Overview

The idea for Mt. Rushmore National Memorial was born from a desire to generate more tourism in the region all the way back in the 1920s. It took over 20 years from that initial conception until the carving of the memorial was completed in 1941. The creation was overseen by the sculptor Gutzon Borglum, whos vision helped create the stunning memorial you see today.

On any visit to Mt. Rushmore it is also important to understand that the memorial is constructed on the historic lands of the Lakota Sioux. The Lakota were originally granted the lands that encompass much of the Black Hills, including Mt. Rushmore, in 1868. However, that was quickly abandoned by the US Government when gold was discovered in the region. Today, many Lakota Sioux find Mt. Rushmore to be a symbol of the injustices they’ve endured at the hands of white settlers and the US Government.

Read more about the history and impacts of Mt. Rushmore on Native Americans here.

Today, over 2 million people visit Mt. Rushmore each year. These visitors are heavily concentrated in the summer months, although the spring and fall can also be a nice time to visit.

Keep reading to learn more about planning you visit, what to bring, and camping near Mt. Rushmore.

Flags at Mt. Rushmore

 

Visiting Mt. Rushmore

Mt. Rushmore is open to visitors 365 days per year making a visit during any season possible. The visitor center is open every day with the exception of Christmas. Below you’ll find some tips and information to make the most of your visit to Mt. Rushmore:

What to do at Mt. Rushmore

 

What to Bring

Heading out on a Mt. Rushmore camping trip involves more than simply deciding on the best campground for your needs. You’ll also have the important job of making sure you have all the right gear you’ll need to ensure a great trip.

We’re sure you’ll already have the essentials like a great tentsleeping bags, and camp chairs, but below are some of our favorite items specifically for camping near Mt. Rushmore:

  • Coleman Camping Stove – This camping classic is perfect cooking up campsite dinners.
  • Portable water container – These portable water containers are a lifesaver.
  • Cooler – A good cooler makes any camping trip better. We can’t recommend Yeti enough!
  • Black Hills Map Pack – This excellent set of maps from National Geographic covers Mt. Rushmore and the surrounding Black Hills area. Perfect for a summer road trip.
  • Black Hills Guidebook – A good guidebook will provide insights and information to help you plan your perfect trip. We like this Moon Guide to Mount Rushmore, the Black Hills, and the Badlands.

What to do at Mt. Rushmore

A visit to Mt. Rushmore will of course include a good amount of awe-struck viewing of the Memorial itself. The beautifully carved faces are truly a sight to behold. However, in addition to viewing the Memorial there are plenty of additional activities to round out your visit to Mt. Rushmore. Check out some of your best options below:

  • Hiking: There are several short hiking trails in the Mt. Rushmore area. This includes the Blackberry Trail which connects visitors with the Black Elk Wilderness area and Black Hills National Forest. The hike to Horsethief Lake also comes highly recommended.
  • Self-guided audio tour: For those looking to gain a deeper appreciation of Mt. Rushmore, we highly recommend taking the self-guided audio or multimedia tour.
  • Explore the visitor center: A stop by the visitor center will connect you with details on any special events that may be happening during your visit. This can include a ranger led talk, the evening light ceremony, and more.

Check out the full list of things to do at Mt. Rushmore on the NPS website here.

 

Hiking trail near Mt. Rushmore

Taking a hike to the nearby Black Hills is a great activity when visiting Mt. Rushmore.

 

Mt. Rushmore Camping

There are no campgrounds located at Mt. Rushmore National Memorial, however there are more than enough to suit your needs in the surrounding area.

Mt. Rushmore is located in the Black Hills of South Dakota, an incredible part of the country that is a camper’s dream with official park service campgrounds available at Badlands National Park, Devils Tower National Monument, Wind Cave National Park and more.

In addition, Custer State Park offers excellent camping just a short drive from Mt. Rushmore. You’ll also find plenty of RV campgrounds, car camping sites, and dispersed camping in the Black Hills National Forest.

The map below gives you a general sense of your campground options near Mt. Rushmore.

Campgrounds with a a blue camper trailer icon represents RV campgrounds near the Mount Rushmore while the red tent icon represents car camping options.

For those looking to explore some of the other highlights of South Dakota and the Black Hills, check out our other camping guides below:

RV campgrounds near Mt. Rushmore

RV camping trips to Mt. Rushmore are very popular and you’ll have tons of excellent options to choose from in the surrounding area. There are several RV campgrounds near Mt Rushmore and even more options if you’re willing to drive a bit. Either way, you’re sure to find the perfect campground for your needs.

Keep reading to learn more.

RV Campgrounds near Mt. Rushmore

 

Rushmore View RV Park

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: Varies
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Rushmore View RV Park is located just north of Mt. Rushmore and is the closest RV campground to the Memorial. This is a great campground for those interested in also exploring Custer State Park.  The campsites at Rushmore View are generally better for smaller RVs, although they do have a few sites that can accommodate larger rigs.

Amenities include easy access to a variety of services in the town of Keystone, including gas stations, a convenience store, laundry facilities and more. Rushmore View RV Park is your best bet if you value location more than anything else.

 

Mount Rushmore KOA Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $75 – $125/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

Located due west from Mt. Rushmore along State Highway 214, the Mount Rushmore KOA offers tons of amenities in close proximity to the Memorial. You can expect the full slate of KOA style amenities here, including a pool, cable tv, WiFi, and small shop. This is an excellent location for exploring not only Mt. Rushmore, but also everything the Black Hills have to offer.

We don’t recommend KOAs for those in search of quiet, but you certainly can’t beat all the amenities if that is what you’re after!

 

Holy Smoke Resort

Number of sites: 21 sites
Fee: $45/night for 2 people. Additional people $2.50/night.
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Holy Smoke Resort Campground is located on State Highway 16A, just north of Mt. Rushmore and the town of Keystone. The campground is part of a larger resort complex that includes vacation homes, cabins, and more. At Holy Smoke you’ll find 21 tightly spaced campsites that feature picnic tables, WiFi, and plenty of big shade trees.

Keep in mind that there are no bathroom or shower facilities at the campground!

 

Spokane Creek Campground

Number of sites: 46 sites
Fee: $25 – $45/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, electric available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Spokane Creek Campground is well located just south of Mt. Rushmore. Situated just a short drive from Custer State Park, this is a good place to stay for those hoping to explore more than just Mt. Rushmore on their trip. This is a quiet campground set in a beautiful location.

Amenities at Spokane Creek include an outdoor pool, basketball court, mini-golf, and a small coffee shop.

 

Black Elk Resort

Number of sites: 8 sites
Fee: $49 – $55/night
Capacity: Max of 6 people per campsite.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Black Elk Resort is a small RV campground with just eight campsites available. Located north of Mt. Rushmore, Black Elk is popular for its cozy feel and friendly staff. Amenities here include the Palmer Creek Tap Room, a playground, nightly campfires, showers, and laundry facilities.

Those staying at Black Elk are also sure to enjoy the immaculately maintained grounds!

 

Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: Varies
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort is perfect for those looking to stay somewhere with tons of amenities and things to do. Located near the town of Custer, SD this isn’t the closest campground to Mt. Rushmore, but it more than makes up for it with so much to do. Amenities include multiple pools, a small general store selling essentials, kids playground, shower facilities, and more.

 

Big Pine Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $44 – $50/night
Capacity: Prices based on 4 people per campsite. Max of 6 per site.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Call (605) 673-4054 to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Big Pine Campground is located the furthest from Mt. Rushmore of all the options included in this guide. However, it still makes a great place to camp, especially when other campgrounds are full. The campsites at Big Pine are nicely shaded and the location provides convenient access to the town of Custer, SD.

You’ll find excellent amenities at Big Pine, including a game room, hot showers, free WiFi, and more.

 

Car camping sites near Mt. Rushmore

If you’re looking for car camping sites near Mt. Rushmore, you’ll have many great options to choose from. We have included your best bets below and you’ll also have good luck at any of the campgrounds included in the RV section above.

Keep reading to learn more.

 

Car camping near Mt. Rushmore

 

Horsethief Lake Campground

Number of sites: 36 campsites
Fee: $26/night
RVs: Yes, but no hookups. Smaller rigs are recommended.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit Recreation.gov to reserve
Pets: Allowed

The Horsethief Lake campground is located just two miles from Mt. Rushmore and sits adjacent to the beautiful Horsethief Lake. This Forest Service campground has 36 individual campsites with easy access to drinking water and restrooms. The sites are set among towering pine trees and there is a camp host on-site during the busy summer months.

This is the most convenient car camping site near Mt. Rushmore so be sure to secure your reservation as far in advance as possible!

 

Kemp’s Kamp

Number of sites: 20 campsites
Fee: $30 – $50/night depending on the site.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available
Reservations: Recommended. Call (605) 666-4654 to make a reservation.
Pets: Allowed

Kemp’s Kamp is large campground located north of Mt. Rushmore along Old Hill City Road. This sprawling campground can accommodate RVs with full hookups, basic tent campers, and everything in between. You’ll be only five minutes from Mt. Rushmore here, making this a great option.

Amenities at Kemp’s Kamp include a heated pool, laundry and shower facilities, and fire pits. This is a good option for families seeking a few more amenities than what you’ll find at a Forest Service campground.

 

Grizzly Creek Primitive Campground

Number of sites: 20 campsites
Fee: $20/night + $7/night for extra vehicles
RVs: Not recommended.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit Recreation.gov to reserve
Pets: Allowed

Located between Mt. Rushmore and Custer State Park, the Grizzly Creek Primitive Campground is a great option for car camping. Grizzly Creek is a primitive site and isn’t recommended for those traveling in an RV. The campground is laid out in a large loop with restrooms on each end. Water is also available at the campground, but only during peak camping season.

Some of the campsites at Grizzly Creek are reservable in advance via Recreation.gov.

 

Custer State Park Camping

Number of Sites: Nine developed campgrounds
Fee: $15 – $30/night
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available at most campgrounds.
Reservations: Highly recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Pets: Allowed.
More Information

Custer State Park occupies over 71,000 acres just south of Mt. Rushmore National Memorial. The park is famous for its herds of bison, beautiful lakes, and unique rock formations. For those visiting Mt. Rushmore, we highly recommend a visit to Custer State Park as well.

For camping, Custer State Park features nine developed campgrounds located throughout the park. For those who plan to visit Mt. Rushmore, you’ll find the following the most convenient:

  • Sylvan Lake Campground: Sylvan Lake Campground features 39 campsites located in the far northeast portion of Custer State Park. You’ll be just a short drive from Mt. Rushmore here and enjoy one of the most beautiful lakes in the region.
  • Center Lake Campground: Center Lake Campground is situated the closest to Mt. Rushmore and features 71 excellent campsites. This is your best bet in Custer State Park.
  • Game Lodge Campground: The Game Lodge Campground is located just off Highway 16A, making it an easy drive up to Mt. Rushmore. Here you’ll find 59 campsites situated along a lovely creek.

Of course, any of the nine campgrounds in Custer State Park make a great place to camp prior to visiting Mt. Rushmore. Be sure to check out our Complete Guide to Camping in Custer State Park to get all the details you’ll need. 

 

Free dispersed camping near Mt. Rushmore

Your final option for camping near Mount Rushmore is to find a free, dispersed campsite on adjacent US Forest Service land in the Black Hills National Forest. Located to the west of Mt. Rushmore,  this land is overseen by the USFS which manages hundreds of thousands of acres of public land throughout the country and generally allows for free ‘dispersed camping’ on it.

 

Free dispersed camping near Mt. Rushmore

 

If you have any questions about the dispersed camping options outlined below be sure to reach out to the USFS offices that oversee the specific areas, shown below:

Black Hills National Forest Dispersed Camping

Free, dispersed camping is permitted in the Black Hills National Forest near Mt. Rushmore. The best sites are generally located to the north of the Memorial. You’ll find hundreds of thousands of acres of National Forest here and plenty of camping possibilities.

Check out some of your best bets below:

  • Spring Creek: Located due west of Mt. Rushmore, just off Highway 16.
  • Wrinkled Rock: Just a short drive up the highway from Mt. Rushmore. The closest option.
  • Keyrapmore: Located north of Mt. Rushmore just off Highway 16.
  • Centennial Trailhead Samulies: This is a small parking lot just off the highway at the Centennial trailhead. Not the most idyllic, but a good option in a pinch. Located northwest of Mt. Rushmore.

 

Have a great trip!

That’s it!

We hope you’ve found all of the information on Mt. Rushmore camping in this post helpful and we know you’ll find the perfect campsite for your upcoming adventure! Be sure to let us know in the comments below if you have any questions or had a great time out camping!

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The Complete Guide to Camping in Custer State Park

Custer State Park is South Dakota’s largest state park and preserves an incredible diversity of landscapes. Granite bluffs, soaring mountains, deep lakes, and grassland prairies are just a few of…

Custer State Park is South Dakota’s largest state park and preserves an incredible diversity of landscapes. Granite bluffs, soaring mountains, deep lakes, and grassland prairies are just a few of the highlights of this beautiful area. Located in the Black Hills, Custer State Park has miles of hiking trails, fishing, boating, biking, and almost any other outdoor activity you can think of.

To take advantage of everything on offer, we think you’ll be best served by spending a night in your tent or RV. By camping at Custer State Park you’ll get to experience this unique landscape firsthand.

Custer State Park has camping opportunities to suit nearly everyone. The park features nine developed campgrounds as well as the French Creek Natural Area for backpackers. In addition, the surrounding area has a plethora of RV campgrounds, car camping spots, and even some free dispersed campsites. No matter your preference, you’re sure to find the perfect campsite near Custer State Park.

Keeping reading to get all the details on camping in Custer State Park.

Mountain in Custer State Park

 

Custer State Park Camping Guide

 

Custer State Park Campgrounds

Custer State Park is located in southwestern South Dakota and sits firmly in the Black Hills. This is an incredible part of the country and nearby you’ll find multiple national parks, national forests, Mount Rushmore, and more. All of this makes Custer State Park and the surrounding region an incredible road trip destination. If you’re heading out to explore this part of the country, camping should be your first thought for accommodation.

The map below gives you a general sense of the nine campgrounds in Custer State Park and their locations relative to the surrounding area. 

Map of campgrounds in Custer State Park

Map of campgrounds in Custer State Park. Map credit South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks.

 

In addition to the overview map shown above we’ve also created an interactive map with all of the campgrounds included in this guide displayed.

Campgrounds with a green tent icon represent the developed campgrounds within Custer State Park, the blue camper trailer icon represents RV campgrounds near the park, and finally the red tent icon represents car camping options near Custer State Park.

 

Reservations

Of the nine developed campgrounds in Custer State Park, eight offer advance reservations. The lone exception is the Center Lake Campground, which offers same-day reservations. To make a reservation for any of the eight reservable campgrounds in Custer State Park, you’ll need to visit the Camp SD website below:

Make a campsite reservation in Custer State Park here.

Camping in Custer State Park is incredibly popular during the peak summer season. As such, we highly recommend making your reservation as soon as possible to ensure you get the campsite you want. 

For backcountry camping in the French Creek Natural Area there are no advance reservations or permits required. You will need to register the day of your trip so that park staff know you are in the backcountry, but nothing is required in advance of your trip.

 

What to Bring

Preparing for your Custer State Park camping trip involves more than deciding which campground best fits your needs. There is also the important job of making sure you have all the right gear you’ll need to ensure a great trip.

We’re sure you’ll already have the essentials like a great tentsleeping bags, and camp chairs, but below are some of our favorite items specifically for camping at Custer State Park:

  • Coleman Camping Stove – This camping classic is perfect cooking up campsite dinners.
  • Portable water container – These portable water containers are a lifesaver.
  • Cooler – A good cooler makes any camping trip better. We can’t recommend Yeti enough!
  • Black Hills Map Pack – This excellent set of maps from National Geographic cover Custer State Park and the surrounding area.
  • Black Hills Guidebook – A good guidebook will provide insights and information to help you plan your perfect trip to Custer State Park. We like this Moon Guide to Mount Rushmore, the Black Hills, and the Badlands.

 

When to Camp at Custer State Park

The majority of the campgrounds in Custer State Park are open seasonally from May – October. The Game Lodge Campground is open year round, however the full facilities are not available outside of the warmer months.

Peak camping season in Custer State Park generally aligns with summer in this part of the world, and most visitors camp in Custer between Memorial Day and Labor Day. If you’re looking for a bit of solitude during your visit, it is best to try and plan your camping trip just outside of these dates.

You’ll encounter some cooler weather, but will have the place to yourself.

Winter in Custer State Park

 

Developed Campgrounds in Custer State Park

There are nine developed campgrounds in Custer State Park. These campgrounds vary in size and proximity to different areas of the park and are sure to provide plenty of options for your perfect camping trip. Details for all nine campgrounds are below.

Blue Bell Campground

Number of Sites: 31 sites
Fee: $15/night for tents, $30/night for electric site
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open seasonally from May 1st – October 14th

Hiking trail in Custer State Park

 

The Blue Bell Campground is located on the western side of Custer State Park, just north of the Blue Bell Entrance Station. This is a popular entry point into the park and makes a convenient place to camp. The campground features 31 campsites and can accommodate RVs with electric hookups.

You’ll be right next to French Creek, so this is a great campground for any anglers out there!

In addition, you’ll be just up the road from the Blue Bell Lodge which features a small restaurant, laundromat, small shop, and gas station.

The campground features flush toilets, showers, and potable water. Blue Bell is open seasonally during the summer months from May 1st – October 14th. Reservations are recommended for anyone hoping to camp at the Blue Bell Campground, as it is typically full throughout the summer.

Click here to make a reservation at the Blue Bell Campground

 

Center Lake Campground

Number of Sites: 71 sites
Fee: $19/night
RVs: Yes, smaller size recommended. No hookups available.
Reservations: Same day reservations available. Learn more here.
Season: Open seasonally from May 1st – September 30th.

The Center Lake Campground is located in the northern section of Custer State Park, and is very convenient if you also plan to visit Mt. Rushmore on your trip. Center Lake itself is beautiful and provides ample opportunities for swimming, fishing, and boating. The campground is large, and includes 71 campsites that can accommodate tents and small RVs.

The amenities at the Custer Lake Campground are basic and include vault toilets and potable water. The campground is open from May – September, and is the only campground in Custer State Park that accepts same day reservations. This allows you to call or go online starting at 6am MT the day of your trip to reserve a campsite. The benefit here is that if you haven’t been able to secure an advance reservation at any other campground in Custer, you’ll still have a shot at securing one Center Lake Campground.

Click here to make a same-day reservation at the Center Lake Campground

 

French Creek Horse Camp

Number of Sites: 28 campsites
Fee: $40/night. Includes two corrals
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open year round. Full facilities including electricity from May 1st – October 31st.

As the name suggests, the French Creek Horse Camp is a campground specifically for those camping with horses. The campground is located just east of the Blue Bell Campground along North Lame Johnny Road. This location lends some solitude as it is off the main park roads.

The campgrounds features 28 individual campsites that each include two corral spaces for your equestrian friends. French Creek Horse Camp features a dump station, flush toilets, and drinking water for both you and your horses.

French Creek is open year round, although you’ll only have access to the full facilities from May – October. Advance reservations are highly recommended, and can be made below.

Click here to make a reservation at the French Creek Horse Camp

French Creek Horse Camp

 

Game Lodge Campground

Number of Sites: 59 campsites
Fee: $26/night for tents, $30/night for electric site
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open year round. Full facilities open from April 1st – November 15th.

Game Lodge Campground

 

The Game Lodge Campground is located just off of Highway 16A, the main east-west road through Custer State Park. Campers here are just a short distance from the main Visitors Center as well as the eastern entrance to the park. Game Lodge features 59 campsites and can accommodate RVs with electric hookups.

The Grace Coolidge Creek flows through the campground, making this a particularly tranquil campground. In addition, you’ll be close to the Peter Norbeck Outdoor Education Center and State Game Lodge, both popular places to visit in Custer State Park.

The campground features flush toilets, showers, and an RV dump station. Game Lodge Campground is open year round, with full facilities available from April – November 15th. We recommend making an advance reservation here, which can be completed at the link below:

Click here to make a reservation at the Game Lodge Campground

 

Grace Coolidge Campground

Number of Sites: 26 sites, including six tent-only
Fee: $15/night for tents, $30/night for electric site
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open seasonally from May 17th – October 13th

The Grace Coolidge Campground is centrally located in Custer State Park, just off Highway 16A. The campground is conveniently located near the main Visitor Center in the park and the Peter Norbeck Outdoor Education Center. Grace Coolidge has 26 campsites, six of which are tent-only that sit on the opposite side of the highway from the main campground.

The campground features flush toilets and showers and is only a mile from the Coolidge General Store. Grace Coolidge campground is open seasonally from May 17th – October 13th, and advance reservations are essential.

Click here to make a reservation at the Grace Coolidge Campground

 

Legion Lake Campground

Number of Sites: 26 sites
Fee: $15/night for tents, $30/night for electric site
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open seasonally from May 1st – October 13th

The Legion Lake Campground sits just across Highway 16A from the famous Legion Lake and Lenker Rock. You’ll find 26 campsites here with a mix of tent-only sites as well as those that can accommodate RVs and feature electric hookups.

From the campground you’ll enjoy easy access to the Badger Clark Memorial as well as to Legion Lake. The lake features fishing, boating, and swimming. You can also enjoy access to the Legion Lake Lodge, which features a small restaurant and basic shop.

The campground features flush toilets, showers, and potable water. Legion Lake Campground is open from May – mid October and advance reservations are highly recommended.

Click here to make a reservation at the Legion Lake Campground

 

Stockade North Campground

Number of Sites: 42 sites
Fee: $26/night for tents, $30/night for electric site
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open seasonally from May 17th – October 7th

Stockade Lake Campground

 

There are two campgrounds located at Stockade Lake in Custer State Park. The first, and larger of the two is the Stockade North Campground. Located just off the main highway, the Stockade North Campground has 42 campsites that can accommodate all sizes of RVs.

Stockade Lake North is a popular campground given its pristine location on the largest lake in the park and easy access to the highway. You can enjoy fishing, boating, and hiking all within close proximity to the campground.

Amenities include electric hookups for RVs, flush toilets, and showers. You’re not far from the Legion Lake Lodge which has a restaurant and small shop. Stockade North is open from mid-May through mid-October and reservations can be made through Camp SD at the link below.

Click here to make a reservation at the Stockade North Campground

 

Stockade South Campground

Number of Sites: 23 sites
Fee: $15/night for tents, $30/night for electric site
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open seasonally from May 17th – October 7th

The smaller of the two campgrounds at Stockade Lake, the Stockade South Campground is a bit quieter and more secluded. Situated on the south end of the lake, acces is from Lower French Creek Road. Here you’ll find 23 campsites that can accommodate tents as well as smaller RVs. There are also several camping cabins available.

Lake access is easy from the campground and you can also visit the Gordon Stockade, where gold was initially discovered back in the 1800s.

The campground features flush toilets, showers, and potable water. Stockade South Campground is open from May – early-October and advance reservations are a must.

Click here to make a reservation at the Stockade South Campground

 

Sylvan Lake Campground

Number of Sites: 39 sites
Fee: $15/night for tents, $30/night for electric site
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit CampSD.com to reserve.
Season: Open seasonally from May 17th – September 30th

Sylvan Lake Camping

 

The final developed campground in Custer State Park is Sylvan Lake Campground, located in the far northwest corner of the park. Sylvan Lake is one of the most popular areas of Custer State Park, and a night spent camping here is a highlight for many.

The Sylvan Lake Campground has 39 campsites that can accommodate tents as well as RVs and has electric hookups available. The campground is located across the famous Needles Highway from the lake, although access is still quite convenient.

The campground features flush toilets, showers, and potable water. The Sylvan Lake lodge is less than a mile from the campground and we highly recommend a visit. Here you’ll find a restaurant, shop selling basic supplies, boat rentals, and more. Reservations are essential and often difficult to come by at the Sylvan Lake Campground and can be made at the link below.

Click here to make a reservation at the Sylvan Lake Campground

 

Backcountry Campsites in Custer State Park

French Creek Natural Area

Fee: $7/night
Reservations: Not required, but registration is mandatory for camping.
Season: Year round

French Creek Natural Area

The French Creek Natural Area provides a beautiful setting for a backcountry camping trip.

 

For those looking for a more adventurous camping trip in Custer State Park, backpacking in the French Creek Natural Area might be just the ticket. This section of the park was set aside to preserve its incredible natural beauty and to offer visitors the opportunity to experience the rugged side of Custer State Park.

The French Creek Natural Area sits in the center of Custer State Park can be accessed from both the west and east. On the east edge of the park, you’ll utilize Wildlife Loop Road with trail access starting just south of the airstrip. From the west, French Creek Natural Area is accessed via North Lame Johnny Rd a few miles from the Blue Bell entrance near the French Creek Horse Camp.

The entire trail runs for approximately 12 miles, although keep in mind this is not a formal trail and does not have any trail markers. Those seeking to hike the entire route should be experienced in backcountry navigation and have a good understanding of the area. This is especially true for a section known as “the Narrows” which requires backpackers to either climb the 60′ cliff or swim across the 100′ river!

Camping is permitted in the French Creek Natural Area with the following regulations:

  • Always practice Leave No Trace principles
  • Campsites must be at least 50′ from the creek
  • No campfires are permitted
  • Bury all human waste at least 200′ from a water source
  • Plan to bring all of your own water as the creek is not suitable for drinking

 

Camping near Custer State Park

Given the popularity of camping in Custer State Park it can be difficult to secure a campsite at one of the nine developed campgrounds in the park. However, don’t give up hope as there are plenty of great camping options just outside of Custer State Park that are sure to meet your needs.

Check out your best options for RV campingcar camping, and free dispersed camping near Custer State Park below. For those looking to explore some of the other highlights of South Dakota and the Black Hills, check out our other camping guides:

RV campgrounds near Custer State Park

Those camping in an RV will have plenty of options just outside Custer State Park. Check out your best bets below.

RV camping near Custer State Park

 

French Creek RV Park

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $32 – $41/night
Capacity: Prices based on 4ppl per campsite
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The French Creek RV Park is located immediately west of Custer State Park in the town of Custer, SD. This is a convenient camping option as you’ll have easy access to the town of Custer, while still camping in a beautiful setting. The state park is just a short drive away as well.

Campsites feature full hookups and picnic tables. There is also a grassy area for tent campers. Amenities at the French Creek RV Park include free WiFi, free Friday night potlucks, and easy access to the Mickelson Trail.

 

Wheels West RV Park

Number of sites: 60 sites
Fee: $37 – $50/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

Wheels West RV Park is located right off Highway 16A, just a stone’s throw from the west entrance to Custer State Park. The campground features full-hookup RV sites as well as tent-only sites and bunkhouse style rooms. The campground recently got new owners and the reviews couldn’t be better.

Amenities at Wheels West include a small souvenir shop that sells shakes, plenty of lawn games, and even occasional live music.

 

Custer Mountain Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $25 – $48/night depending on site.
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Custer Mountain Campground is located west of the state park, just before reaching the town of Custer. The campsites here are tucked in a beautiful forest of pine trees and give a sense of tranquility and calm. Sites can be a bit close together, but the facilities are spotless and the staff friendly.

Amenities include showers, laundry, and a playground.

 

Custer’s Gulch RV Campground

Number of sites: 60 sites
Fee: $59 – $69/night
Capacity: Prices based on 2 adults & 2 children
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

Located about 1 mile south of Highway 16A just west of Custer State Park, Custer’s Gulch RV Campground makes a convenient place to spend the night. This quiet RV park features full hookups, WiFi, hot showers, and even provides on-site car rentals to explore the Black Hills.

 

Echo Valley RV Park

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $35/night
Capacity: Prices based on 2ppl per campsite
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Call 1-605-673-3368 to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Echo Valley RV Park is situated west of Custer State Park and is well located for those hoping to visit Sylvan Lake or the Crazy Horse Memorial. This is a basic campground that is set in a stunning location. Campsites all feature a picnic table and are more secluded than many campgrounds in the area.

Amenities at Echo Valley include hot showers, laundry, and incredibly friendly staff.

 

Big Pine Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $44 – $50/night
Capacity: Prices based on 4 people per campsite. Max of 6 per site.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Call (605) 673-4054 to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Big Pine Campground is located a bit further from Custer State Park compared to other options, but still makes a great place to camp. The campsites at Big Pine are nicely shaded and the location provides convenient access to the town of Custer, SD.

You’ll find excellent amenities at Big Pine, including a game room, hot showers, free WiFi, and more. Highly recommended!

 

Rushmore View RV Park

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: Varies
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Rushmore View RV Park is located north of Custer State Park, adjacent to Mount Rushmore National Memorial. This is a great location for those looking to explore both Custer State Park as well as Mt. Rushmore.  The campsites at Rushmore View are generally better for smaller RVs, although they do have a few sites that can accommodate larger rigs.

Amenities include easy access to a variety of services in the town of Keystone, including gas stations, a convenience store, laundry facilities and more.

 

Mount Rushmore KOA Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $75 – $125/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

Situated north of Custer State Park on Highway 244, the Mount Rushmore KOA Campground offers a great RV campground for those exploring the Black Hills. You can expect the full slate of KOA style amenities here, including a pool, cable tv, WiFi, and small shop.

We don’t recommend KOAs for those in search of quiet, but you certainly can’t beat all the amenities if that is what you’re after!

 

Spokane Creek Campground

Number of sites: 46 sites
Fee: $25 – $45/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, electric available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Spokane Creek Campground is perfectly situated for those hoping to explore the northern section of Custer State Park. Located near the intersection of Highway 16A and Playhouse Rd, you’ll have easy access to the Center Lake area from here. This is a quiet campground set in a beautiful location.

Amenities at Spokane Creek include an outdoor pool, basketball court, mini-golf, and a small coffee shop.

 

Custer / Mount Rushmore / Black Hills KOA

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $50 – $125/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed

Located west of Custer State Park and the town of Custer, SD, the Custer/Mount Rushmore/Black Hills KOA is well situated to visit the surrounding area. While certainly more expensive than some of your other options, this KOA has great amenities. These include a dog park, WiFi, playground, and an on-site store selling camping essentials.

 

Car camping sites near Custer State Park

If you’re looking for car camping sites near Custer State Park, you’ll have several excellent options.  

In addition to the options listed below, most of the campgrounds included in the RV section above welcome car campers. Keep reading below to see what your best bets are for car camping near Custer State Park.

Car camping near Custer State Park

 

Bismark Lake Campground

Number of sites: 23 campsites
Fee: $20/night + $7/night for extra vehicles
RVs: Yes, no hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit Recreation.gov to reserve
Pets: Allowed

The Bismark Lake Campground is about as convenient as it gets for car camping near Custer State Park. Located just across the highway from Stockade Lake, you’ll be just minutes from the state park. There are 23 campsites at Bismark Lake along with restrooms, a picnic area, and potable water. Note that drinking water is generally only available during the summer months.

Reservations are accepted and recommended for camping at Bismark Lake and can be made through Recreation.gov here.

 

Oreville Campground

Number of sites: 26 campsites
Fee: $20/night
RVs: Yes, no hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit Recreation.gov to reserve
Pets: Allowed

The Oreville Campground is located northwest of Custer State Park and makes a great place to camp before exploring Sylvan Lake. The campground has 26 campsites organized in two loops. You’ll find two sets of bathrooms along with potable water here.

Advance reservations for the Oreville Campground can be made via Recreation.gov.

 

Grizzly Creek Primitive Campground

Number of sites: 20 campsites
Fee: $20/night + $7/night for extra vehicles
RVs: Not recommended.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit Recreation.gov to reserve
Pets: Allowed

Located between Mt. Rushmore and Custer State Park, the Grizzly Creek Primitive Campground is a great option for car camping. Grizzly Creek is a primitive site and isn’t recommended for those traveling in an RV. The campground is laid out in a large loop with restrooms on each end. Water is also available at the campground, but only during peak camping season.

Some of the campsites at Grizzly Creek are reservable in advance via Recreation.gov.

 

Comanche Park Campground

Number of sites: 34 campsites
Fee: $16/night + $7/night for extra vehicles
RVs: Yes, but no hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Visit Recreation.gov to reserve
Pets: Allowed

The Comanche Park Campground is located west of Custer, SD along Highway 16. This is a larger campground with 34 sites and can accommodate both tent campers and smaller RVs. You’ll be close to Jewel Cave National Monument and away from some of the hustle and bustle in the Mt. Rushmore area.

Reservations are available via Recreation.gov.

 

Wind Cave National Park – Elk Mountain Campground

Number of sites: 62 campsites
Fee: $16/night + $7/night for extra vehicles
RVs: Yes, but no hookups available.
Reservations: First-come, first-served.
Pets: Allowed

Your final option for car camping near Custer State Park is to stay at the Elk Mountain Campground in the adjacent Wind Cave National Park. The campground has 62 campsites, all of which are available on a first-come, first-served basis. This is a great option as it allows you to explore both Custer State Park and Wind Cave National Park from one convenient location.

 

Free dispersed camping near Custer State Park

Your final option for camping near Custer State Park is to find a free, dispersed campsite on adjacent US Forest Service land in the Black Hills National Forest. Located to the west of Custer State Park,  this land is overseen by the USFS which manages hundreds of thousands of acres of public land throughout the country and generally allows for free ‘dispersed camping’ on it.

Free Dispersed campsite near Custer State Park

 

If you have any questions about the dispersed camping options outlined below be sure to reach out to the USFS offices that oversee the specific areas, shown below:

Black Hills National Forest Dispersed Camping

Free, dispersed camping is permitted in the Black Hills National Forest near Custer State Park. The best sites are generally located to the north and west of the park. You’ll find hundreds of thousands of acres of National Forest here and plenty of camping possibilities.

Check out some of your best bets below:

  • Spring Creek: Located northwest of Custer State Park, just off Highway 16.
  • Wrinkled Rock: North of Custer State Park, near Mt. Rushmore.
  • Keyrapmore: This area is located north of Custer, just off Highway 16.

 

Custer State Park Camping Must Know

The following sections contain all the basic information you need to ensure you have a great time camping in Custer State Park. Before we dive in, there are a few important regulations to note:

  • Park entrance fees are available for daily, weekly, or annual rates. Check out the current fees here.
  • Only camp in designated sites, with the exception of the French Creek Natural Area.
  • Always store your food in your car or in an animal proof container.
  • Always practice Leave No Trace principles.

Where to get supplies

Custer State Park is surrounded by a plethora of outdoor attractions including the Black Hills, Mount Rushmore, and Wind Cave National Park. This makes the area a popular road trip destination which is well served by small towns. You’ll find plenty of options to stock up on camping supplies around Custer State Park, with your best bets outlined below:

  • Custer, SD: The town of Custer, SD is the main stopping off point for most visitors to Custer State Park. Located just west of the park along Highway 16A, you’ll find everything you need to prepare for your camping trip here. This includes gas stations, grocery stores, and several excellent outdoor shops.
  • Keystone, SD: Keystone is the best place to stock up on supplies for those heading to Custer State Park from the north. Located between the park and Mt. Rushmore, Keystone has all the essentials you may need prior to spending a few nights in your tent.
  • Rapid City, SD: The largest city in the vicinity of Custer State Park is Rapid City, SD. The gateway to the Black Hills, Badlands National Park, and Custer State Park, Rapid City has any major service you could need.

 

Have a great trip!

That’s it!

We hope you’ve found all of the information on Custer State Park camping in this post helpful and we know you’ll find the perfect campsite for your upcoming adventure! Be sure to let us know in the comments below if you have any questions or had a great time out camping!

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The Complete Guide to Camping at Devils Tower National Monument

Devils Tower National Monument is America’s first National Monument and an incredible sight to behold. The stunning butte that rises above the Black Hills is sacred to many of the…

Devils Tower National Monument is America’s first National Monument and an incredible sight to behold. The stunning butte that rises above the Black Hills is sacred to many of the Native American tribes that call the Great Plains home and is sure to inspire visitors to this beautiful place. Climbing, hiking, and taking in the night sky are all quintessential experiences at Devils Tower.

We think the best way to experience Devils Tower is to spend a few nights in your tent or RV taking in this unique landscape.

Devils Tower and the surrounding areas have camping options to suit any style. From the national monuments lone developed campground, to nearby RV campgrounds, and the surrounding Black Hills National Forest, you’ll have plenty of options to find the perfect campsite.

Keeping reading to get all the details to plan your perfect camping trip to Devils Tower National Monument.

Road next to Devils Tower

Camping is the perfect way to experience all that Devils Tower has to offer.

 

In this Devils Tower Camping Guide

 

Devils Tower National Monument Campgrounds

Devils Tower National Monument sits in northeast Wyoming at the edge of the Black Hills and adjacent to the Belle Fourche River. The main attraction of the monument is of course the tower itself, which rises 867 feet from its base to the summit. The entire area of the monument emcompasses over 1,300 acres and features a variety of hiking trails that showcase the beauty of this pristine environment.

There is only a single developed campground at Devils Tower, known as the Belle Fourche River Campground. However, there are several nearby campgrounds that provide additional accommodation options for visitors.

The map below gives you a general sense of where Belle Fourche River Campground is located as well as its relation to the surrounding area. 

Map of the campground in Devils Tower National Monument

Map showing the Belle Fourche River Campground in Devils Tower National Monument. Map credit NPS.

 

In addition to the overview map shown above we’ve also created an interactive map with all of the campgrounds included in this guide displayed.

Campgrounds with a green tent icon are the developed campgrounds within the Monument, the blue camper trailer icon represents RV campgrounds near the park, and finally the red tent icon represents car camping options near Devils Tower National Monument.

 

 

Reservations & Permits

It is not possible to make an advance reservation at the the Belle Fourche Campground at Devils Tower National Monument. This can be both a blessing and a curse as it provides a level playing field for campers, but also prevents you from making advance plans for your trip.

You’ll have the best luck at securing a spot during peak season here by showing up early and being patient. Weekdays are also always better than weekends for campsite availability.

For those who prefer to have a reservation before making what will likely be a long drive to Devils Tower, we recommend checking out one of the nearby campgrounds that accepts reservations.

Camping near Devils Tower at dusk

 

What to Bring

Preparing for your Devils Tower camping trip involves more than deciding which campground best fits your needs. There is also the important job of making sure you have all the right gear you’ll need to ensure a great trip.

We’re sure you’ll already have the essentials like a great tentsleeping bags, and camp chairs, but below are some of our favorite items specifically for camping at Devils Tower National Monument:

  • Coleman Camping Stove – This camping classic is perfect cooking up campsite dinners.
  • Portable water container – These portable water containers are a lifesaver.
  • Cooler – A good cooler makes any camping trip better. We can’t recommend Yeti enough!
  • Black Hills Family Fun Guide – A good guidebook will provide insights and information to help you plan your perfect trip to Devils Tower. We like this family-friendly guide that covers Devils Tower, the Black Hills, and Badlands.

When to Camp at Devils Tower

The Belle Fourche River Campground is open seasonally from mid-May through mid-October.

Peak camping season in Devils Tower generally aligns with summer in this part of the world, with most visitors coming between Memorial Day and Labor Day. If you’re looking for a bit of solitude during your visit, it is best to try and plan your camping trip just outside of these dates.

Find more information on the weather conditions you can expect to encounter in Devils Tower National Monument here. 

Devils Tower National Monument generally is closed for the winter months, although it does open for 10 days or so around Spring Break. This is typically from about March 19th – April 1st. If you plan to visit in winter, you can always enjoy the outstanding views from Highway 24, which runs adjacent to Devils Tower.

Find more information on opening hours and seasons in Devils Tower National Monument here. 

Snow on Devils Tower

Winter brings cold temperatures and snow to Devils Tower. Photo credit NPS/S. Carter

 

Developed Campgrounds at Devils Tower National Monument

There is a single developed campground in Devils Tower National Monument. For those interested in seeing additional camping options, check out the next section on campgrounds near Devils Tower.

There is a 14-day stay limit for all campers at the Belle Fourche River Campground.

Belle Fourche River Campground

Number of Sites: 46 sites (including 3 tent-only group sites)
Fee: $20/night for individual sites, $30/night for group sites
RVs: Yes, max length of approximately 35′. No hookups available.
Reservations: All sites are first-come, first-served.
Season: Open seasonally from May 15th – October 15th
More Information

Belle Fourche River Campground in Devils Tower.

Beautifuls views of Devils Tower from the Belle Fourche River Campground. Photo credit NPS/Avery Locklear

 

The Belle Fourche River Campground is the lone campground in Devils Tower National Monument and is located just off the main park road to the south of the tower itself.

Belle Fourche features 46 campsites organized into two loops, known as Loop A and Loop B. Of the 46 total sites, three are designed as tent-only group campsites that can accommodate up to 20 people each. Additionally, the campground features four accessible sites.

RVs and trailers up to 35′ are welcome at the campground, although you won’t find any hookups available. Individual sites can accommodate up to 8 people, and no more than four cars per campsite are allowed.

The campground is set in a beautiful location adjacent to the Belle Fourche River and many of the sites have stunning views of Devils Tower through the trees. Campsites feature fire rings, picnic tables, and all have access to potable water. Campfires are permitted at the campground, but must be fully contained within the provided fire ring.

Check out the NPS map below to get a better sense of the layout of the Belle Fourche River Campground in Devils Tower National Monument.

Map of the Belle Fourche River Campground

Map of the Belle Fourche River Campground. Map credit NPS/Joe Bruce

 

Camping near Devils Tower National Monument

Given that there is just a single NPS run campground at Devils Tower, it is always possible (and even likely) that you won’t be able to find a campsite in Devils Tower National Monument. However, don’t give up just yet as there are plenty of option in the surrounding area to meet your needs.

Check out your best options for RV campingcar camping, and free dispersed camping near Devils Tower National Monument below.

For those looking to explore some of the other highlights of South Dakota and the Black Hills, check out our other camping guides:

 

RV campgrounds near Devils Tower

Those camping in an RV will have several options just outside of Devils Tower. From the KOA campground located just steps from the monument to full service campgrounds in nearby towns, we’re sure you’ll find an RV campground that fits your needs.

Keep reading to learn more.

RV camping at Devils Tower

 

Devils Tower KOA Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $30 – $100/night depending on site, hookups, etc.
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, full hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Devils Tower KOA Campground is the most convenient option for RV camping near Devils Tower National Monument. The campground is located just outside the monument, providing for incredibly easy access. Many RV campers may prefer the KOA to the Belle Fourche Campground given the amenities you’ll have access to here.

Campsites feature electric hookups and many have unobstructed views of Devils Tower. In addition, you’ll be able to enjoy the on-site restaurant, heated pool, playground, and more.

 

Devils Tower View Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: Varies depending on site.
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Click here to reserve.
Pets: Allowed
More Information

Located just a few miles south of Devils Tower National Monument on Highway 24, the Devils Tower View Campground is a great option for RV campers. The campground features sites with 30/50 amp service as well as plenty of space for tent campers. You’ll enjoy great views of the Tower from your campsite as well.

On-site amenities include a popular restaurant, gift shop selling local artisan products, and an outdoor gazebo. We recommend Mountain View for anyone looking for a quieter experience than what the KOA offers.

 

Mountain View RV Park & Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $29 – $46/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Call 307-283-2270
Pets: Allowed
More Information

The Mountain View RV Park & Campground is located approximately 30 minutes from Devils Tower in the town of Sundance, Wyoming. The campground features plenty of RV campsites with electric hookups as well as a huge, 2-acre field to accommodate tent campers. You’ll be a just a few minutes from Sundance, which has bars, restaurants, and other services available.

On-site amenities at Mountain View include a small shop selling necessities, a heated pool, and a snack bar.

 

Car camping sites near Devils Tower

A tent near Devils Tower

 

Devils Tower Tipi Camping

Number of sites: Six tipis available
Fee: $50 – $75/night
Capacity: 4 – 8 people depending on size of tipi
RVs: Not permitted.
Reservations: Required. Contact via website
Pets: Allowed
More Information

A unique car camping option just minutes from Devils Tower is the Devils Tower Tipi Campground. Here you’ll find six traditional Sioux teepees available for rent with beautiful views of the Tower. All teepees come with a camp stove, three gallons of water, a lantern, and coffee, setting you up for a lovely trip.

Devils Tower Tipi gets rave reviews for the friendly and helpful owner. Highly recommended!

 

Black Hills National Forest Campgrounds

Number of Sites: Reuter Campground (24 sites) / Sundance Campground (10 sites) / Cook Lake Campground (32 sites) / Bearlodge Campground (8 sites)
Fee: $14 – $24/night
Capacity: Varies depending on campground
RVs: Most sites have space, but good to check in advance.
Reservations: Recommended for Reuter, Sundance, & Cook Lake. Visit Recreation.gov to reserve
Pets: Allowed.
More Information

The Black Hills National Forest encompasses over 1.2 million acres of land in South Dakota and Wyoming. The National Forest is not contiguous, and a smaller enclave is located just east of Devils Tower. Here, you’ll find several excellent car camping options to suit your needs, outlined below:

  • Reuter Campground (24 sites): The Reuter Campground is located just north of Sundance, WY and is very convenient for visiting Devils Tower. There are 24 campsites here, which can be reserved via Recreation.gov.
  • Sundance Horse Campground (10 sites): The Sundance Horse camp is located north of Sundance and provides 10 campsites specifically designed to accommodate campers with horses.
  • Cook Lake Campground (32 sites): The Cook Lake Campground is located right in the middle of the Black Hills National Forest. Expect a further drive to get to Devils Tower from here, but you’ll enjoy lake access and a bit more seclusion.
  • Bearlodge Campground (8 sites): The Bear Lodge Campground is located in the northern section of Black Hills National Forest, just off Highway 24. You’ll be just a short drive from Devils Tower here, making this a great option for nearby car camping.
Camping in Black Hills National Forest

Black Hills National Forest offers plenty of camping near Devils Tower.

 

Screaming Eagle Campground

Number of sites: Plenty!
Fee: $29 – $46/night
Capacity: None stated.
RVs: Yes, electric hookups available.
Reservations: Recommended. Call 307-283-2270
Pets: Allowed
More Information

A great car camping option near Devils Tower National Monument is the Screaming Eagle Campground located in the town of Hulett, WY. Situated just nine miles north of Devils Tower, this is a great place to pitch your tent. The Screaming Eagle gets great reviews for its grassy pitches, shady trees, and very friendly owner.

You’re also walking distance to the town of Hulett here, making it easy to grab a bite to eat or pick up a few supplies.

 

Free dispersed camping near Devils Tower

Your final option for camping near Devils Tower National Monument is to find a free, dispersed campsite on adjacent US Forest Service land in the Black Hills National Forest. Located to the east of Devils Tower,  this land is overseen by the USFS which manages hundreds of thousands of acres of public land throughout the country and generally allows for free ‘dispersed camping’ on it.

Free dispersed camping near Devils Tower National Monument.

 

If you have any questions about the dispersed camping options outlined below be sure to reach out to the USFS offices that oversee the specific areas, shown below:

Black Hills National Forest Dispersed Camping

Free, dispersed camping is permitted in the Black Hills National Forest near Devils Tower. The best sites seems to be located in the northern section of the Black Hills, just off of State Highway 24. Here you’ll find some gravel and two-track roads that have plenty of pull outs perfect for dispersed camping.

It is also possible to find a free campsites north of the town of Sundance in the Black Hills, but these seem to get worse reviews compared to other options. Check out some of your best bets below:

 

Devils Tower National Monument Camping Must Know

Where to get supplies

There a few good options close to Devils Tower where you can stock up on food, gas, and any other camping supplies you might need. Check out your best options below:

  • Hulett: Hulett, WY is located approximately nine miles north of Devils Tower along State Highway 24. This small town has plenty of services that campers may want to take advantage of, including a small grocery store, gas station, and hardware store.
  • Sundance: Sundance, WY is the largest town near Devils Tower and your best bet to find any last minute camping supplies. Located 30 minutes south of Devils Tower you’ll find a full service grocery store, gas stations, and a popular outdoor store here.

Pets

Pets are permitted at Devils Tower National Monument, but are only allowed in specific areas of the monument. This includes the Belle Fourche River Campground, picnic areas, and in parking areas/along roadways.

Pets are not allowed on any hiking trails at Devils Tower or in any park service buildings.

We generally recommend against bringing you pet to Devils Tower, but if you do please follow these regulations:

  • Pets must be on a leash at all times.
  • Pets are not allowed in park buildings or on trails.
  • Do not leave your pet unattended in your vehicle.
  • Always properly dispose of pet waste.

For a complete list of regulations related to pets check out the Devils Tower National Monument  website here.

Devils Tower from a nearby road

 

Have a great trip!

That’s it!

We hope you’ve found all of the information on Devils Tower National Monument camping in this post helpful and we know you’ll find the perfect campsite for your upcoming adventure! Be sure to let us know in the comments below if you have any questions or had a great time out camping!

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Cleveland Way Accommodation Guide

The Cleveland Way is a true gem of England’s National Trails. Taking in some of the best walking in the North York Moors National Park, walkers will be treated to…

The Cleveland Way is a true gem of England’s National Trails. Taking in some of the best walking in the North York Moors National Park, walkers will be treated to heather covered mountainsides, charming villages, and stunning coastal views. Along the route there are plenty of accommodation options to suit every budget and preference.

Overnight options include everything from campgrounds, to bunkhouses, charming B&Bs, to luxury hotels. While certainly good to have options, it can be a bit overwhelming to decide where to stay on the Cleveland Way.

This Cleveland Way Accommodation Guide is designed to solve just that issue. We’ve put together a comprehensive list of your best options at each of the common stopping points along the route to help you get the most from your walk.

Keep reading to learn more.

 

Whitby on the Cleveland Way

 

In This Cleveland Way Accommodation Guide

 

Should I reserve my Cleveland Way accommodation in advance?

Simply put, yes, you should probably reserve your Cleveland Way accommodation in advance.

The North York Moors can be quite a popular destination during the summer months, attracting visitors from all over the UK. This is especially true along the coastal section of the walk where towns like Robin Hood’s Bay and Scarborough are busy holiday destinations.

While you might be able to get by without a reservation in some of the less visited towns along the route, having made an advance booking will give you peace of mind and assurances that you have a place to rest your head.

As such, we recommend booking your accommodation for the Cleveland Way as early as possible. For the popular coastal villages along the route we recommend making a booking 4-5 months in advance to ensure your first choice is available. Reservations for the non-coastal towns don’t need to be made as far in advance, but we still recommend booking at least a month in advance if possible.

 

English breakfast

Expect a filling breakfast at any of the B&Bs on the Cleveland Way.

 

Cleveland Way Accommodation Cost

The cost of accommodation along the Cleveland Way varies depending on a number of factors. Generally speaking, accommodation is more expensive along the cost, and a bit more affordable inland. Additionally, the time of year has a huge impact on what you can expect to pay, with the summer months of July and August being the most expensive.

Of course the length of time you plan to walk the Cleveland Way in also will influence how much you need to budget for accommodation. Some walkers will complete the route in 5-6 days, while other prefer to do it in 12 or more.

Given all of these factors it can be difficult to pin down average costs for the Cleveland Way, but we’ve taken a stab at it below:

  • B&B/Guesthouse/Hotel: £70+ (per person/per night)
  • Bunkhouse/Hostel: £40+ (per person/per night)
  • Camping: £10+ (per person/per night)

In our accommodation directory, we’ve provided our recommendations for high-end, mid-range, and budget options at all of the common stopping points along the Cleveland Way. We’ve defined those categories as follows:

  • High-End: £80+ (per person/per night)
  • Mid-Range: £40-80 (per person/per night)
  • Budget:<£40 (per person/per night)

Note that not every stop along the walk will feature accommodation that fits neatly into each of the categories above. In those cases we’ve included multiple options in a specific price point based on what is available.

Trail in the North York Moors

Looking for more Cleveland Way resources? Check out our Cleveland Way | Maps & Routes article here.

 

Cleveland Way Accommodation Directory & Map

Finding your accommodation for the Cleveland Way is not always an easy task. You’ll find a variety of options at each stopping point on the walk, and it can be difficult to decide which one is best for you. We’re here to simply your decision making process with our accommodation guide below!

We’ve distilled the best options into an easy to ready format with key details, as well as our recommendations for every budget.

We’ve organized our list to follow most variations of the classic Cleveland Way itinerary from Helmsley to Filey.

You can also view all of the accommodation providers in this directory on the interactive map below.

Need an easy way to access Cleveland Way maps and accommodation information on your phone? Check out the Hiiker app! It’s a valuable tool to have with you on the trail.

Read the directory in its entirety or jump to a specific stopping point from the list below:

 

Helmsley

High-End: Feversham Arms Hotel

The Feversham Arms is a classic boutique hotel in Helmsley and is perfect for those looking to start their Cleveland Way walk with a bit of luxury. The hotel features a stunning outdoor pool, beautiful rooms, and exceptional staff. This is our top option in Helmsley.

Mid-Range: Carlton Lodge

The Carlton Lodge is an excellent mid-range option in Helmsley. This quaint guest house is set in a beautiful stone building among lovely gardens. The breakfast is outstanding and gets great reviews from guests. This is a great option for those looking for a relaxing night without breaking the bank.

Budget: The Royal Oak Hotel

The Royal Oak Hotel is located right in the center of Helmsley and provides great access to all of the amenities of this market town. While certainly in a busier location than your other options, the rooms are quiet and well appointed. The on-site pub and restaurant have great dining options as well.

 

Church in Helmsley

 

Sutton Bank

Mid-Range: Church Farm B&B

The Church Farm B&B is located just south of Sutton Bank in the village of Kilburn. With only two guest rooms, you’ll get excellent service at a very reasonable rate. Breakfast is included and gets rave reviews from guests.

Mid-Range: The Forresters Arms Hotel

The Forresters Arms Hotel provides classic pub accommodation in the heart of Kilburn, just a short distance from the Cleveland Way. The cozy pub is the perfect place to enjoy a pint after the days walk, and the staff are warm and accommodating. Highly recommended.

Budget: High House Farm

The High House Farm offers simple farmhouse accommodation just north of the Cleveland Way. With just two simple rooms available, a night here offers a great opportunity to enjoy the pastoral North York Moors.

 

Osmotherley

Mid-Range: Vane House

The Vane House is a lovely bed & breakfast located in the center of Osmotherley. You can expect very friendly service, clean rooms, and an excellent breakfast here. For those looking for B&B accommodation in Osmotherley, this is your best bet.

Mid-Range: The Queen Catherine Hotel

The Queen Catherine Hotel provides basic accommodation right on the Cleveland Way in Osmotherley. The front patio is a lovely place to relax on a warm day and breakfast gets great reviews. The rooms are a bit dated, but nothing that won’t suit a weary Cleveland Way walker!

Budget: Cote Ghyll Mill YHA

The Cote Ghyll Mill is a YHA run bunkhouse that features hostel style rooms as well as a campground. As with all YHA’s you’ll find a well-run establishment complete with a shared kitchen and lovely common spaces. You can’t go wrong here.

 

Great Broughton/Clay Bank Top

Mid-Range: Wainstones Hotel

The Wainstones Hotel is located in Great Broughton, north of the Cleveland Way. This lovely hotel offers a pick-up service at Clay Bank Top for Cleveland Way walkers, an incredible amenity! You’ll also find friendly staff, a good restaurant, and well-appointed rooms.

Mid-Range: The Buck Inn

The Buck Inn is located south of the Cleveland Way and the owners are more than happy to pick up weary walkers at Clay Bank Top. The rooms are quaint and the owners attentive. This is a great mid-range option in the area.

Budget: Beak Hills Farm

Located just half a mile off of the Cleveland Way prior to Clay Bank Top, Beak Hills Farm is a great place to stay. The two guest rooms are perfect for walkers and provide an outstanding value for the money. They also allow camping for anyone carrying their tent.

 

Kildale

Mid-Range: The Old Rectory

The Old Rectory is a lovely B&B located in the village of Kildale, right on the Cleveland Way. This family run affair has exceptional service, breakfast, and rooms. The owners will even drive you to the nearest pub for dinner!

 

Saltburn-by-the-Sea

High-End: Brockley Hall Hotel

This boutique hotel is the place to stay if you’re looking for a bit of luxury near the halfway point of your Cleveland Way walk. Brockley Hall has stunning rooms and an excellent on-site restaurant. The location is also perfect, as the hotel sits right on the Cleveland Way.

Mid-Range: The Spa Hotel

The Spa Hotel is a great pick in Saltburn-by-the-Sea. The individually decorated rooms are well-appointed and the food gets rave reviews. You’re also only a short stroll from the beach here, making this a great stop on your walk.

Budget: The Victoria

The Victoria is located right in the center of Saltburn-by-the-Sea and provides great value for the money. It can get a bit noisy here at night, but the staff are incredibly friendly and you can’t beat the location!

The pier in Saltburn-by-the-Sea

 

Staithes

High-End: Roraima House

The Roraima House is a charming bed and breakfast located just up from the waterfront in Staithes. Period feature architecture complements the friendly service. The food is excellent as well.

Mid-Range: Trig Point 49 and Keel Lodges

This five room lodge is a good mid-range option in Staithes for Cleveland Way walkers. The rooms are simple and clean and the staff very accommodating. One of our top picks in Staithes.

Budget: The Royal George

The Royal George B&B has one of the best locations in town, situated right on the Cleveland Way and just steps from the water. This excellent budget option features three rooms, two of which are en suite. Breakfast is included and the on-site pub is a great place to grab a pint after finishing the day’s walk.

View of Staithes from the Cleveland Way

 

Runswick Bay

Mid-Range: Cliffemount Hotel

The Cliffemount Hotel features stunning views of Runswick Bay from the bright and clean rooms. This small hotel is known for the friendly staff and we highly recommend splurging for a sea-view room with a balcony. You won’t regret it!

Mid-Range: The Runswick Bay Hotel

The Runswick Bay hotel is located right in the center of the village and features six guest rooms. You’ll find great value here with reasonable room prices and caring staff. Be sure to try the fish and chips from the on-site restaurant!

Budget: The Firs Guesthouse

The Firs Guesthouse is a small, family-run affair that comes with excellent reviews. A great breakfast, easy beach access to soak those weary feet, and friendly staff make this a solid option.

Runswick Bay

 

Whitby

High-End: The Dolphin Hotel

With a stunning view overlooking the bay, the Dolphin Hotel is a great option in Whitby. Located right on the Cleveland Way, this well-reviewed hotel features classic rooms, a cozy pub, and a hearty breakfast.

Mid-Range: The Pier Inn

The Pier Inn is centrally located in Whitby right off the main trail and gets rave reviews for its excellent views. The staff is welcoming to walkers and be sure to enjoy a full English breakfast before setting out the next morning.

Budget: The George Hotel

The George Hotel is located just across from the main train station in Whitby, putting you right in the center of the action. The lively pub scene is perfect for walkers who enjoy a bit of revelry. You’ll also enjoy spotlessly clean rooms and very friendly staff.

 

Robin Hood’s Bay

High-End: Fernleigh B&B

The Fernleigh B&B is our top choice in Robin Hood’s Bay. The newly renovated Victorian home features top-notch amenities and beautiful décor on a quiet street near the center of town. The wonderful owners will make sure you feel welcome and well-fed.

Mid-Range: The Grosvenor Hotel

The Grosvenor is a favorite accommodation for many Cleveland Way walkers and for good reason. Guests at this charming hotel will enjoy spotless rooms, a delicious breakfast, and a location that’s just five minutes’ to the beach.

Budget: YHA Boggle Hole

Of all the fantastic YHA hostels throughout England, this is surely one of the best. Tucked away in a secluded cove, the main building is set in a recently-renovated historic mill. The entire place embraces a fun nautical theme and boasts excellent facilities and lots of fun activities. Dorms and private en suite rooms are available.

Robin Hood's Bay

 

Ravenscar

Mid-Range: Raven Hall Hotel

The Raven Hall Hotel is perfectly located for Cleveland Way walkers right in the center of Ravenscar. The hotel is situated on a beautiful bluff overlooking the sea and the rooms don’t disappoint. This boutique option is a great place to spend the night.

Budget: Smuggler’s Rock Guest House

The Smuggler’s Rock Guest House provides simple B&B accommodation in Ravenscar, just up the road from the Cleveland Way. The rooms here are immaculately clean and well decorated. The charming garden is the perfect place to relax after a long day’s walk.

 

Scarborough

Mid-Range: The Crescent Hotel

The Crescent Hotel is located in a beautiful old building in the center of Scarborough. The location leaves nothing to be desired and the on-site restaurant serves up a delicious breakfast. A great option for what is likely your final night on the Cleveland Way.

Mid-Range: The Dickens Bar & Inn

The Dickens Bar & Inn provides excellent pub accommodation in the heart of Scarborough. Enjoy a pint in the pub before retiring to your quiet and clean room for the evening. Breakfast is included in the room rate and gets great reviews from guests.

Budget: Argo Hotel

The Argo is your best budget option in Scarborough. Although it is not the most luxurious accommodation available in town, the host Lynn more than makes up for it with friendly service. Breakfast is included and you’re just a short walk from the beach.

Filey

Mid-Range: The White Lodge Hotel

Upon finishing your walk in Filey we highly recommend a stay at the White Lodge Hotel. Set in a stunning building, the White Lodge is known for its incredibly comfortable beds – the perfect place to rest your head after a 100+ mile walk!

Mid-Range: Abbots Leigh Guesthouse

Centrally located in Filey, Abbots Leigh Guest House provides cozy accommodation at very reasonable prices. The rooms are stylishly outfitted and the hosts go above and beyond to make you feel at home. Highly recommended!

Filey, UK

 

What’s Next?

Check out our other great Cleveland Way Resources:

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Cotswold Way Accommodation Guide

The Cotswold Way meanders through some of the loveliest countryside England has to offer. This Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is the perfect backdrop for one of England’s most popular…

The Cotswold Way meanders through some of the loveliest countryside England has to offer. This Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is the perfect backdrop for one of England’s most popular National Trails. For those that walk the Cotswold Way you’ll be treated to beautiful lavender fields, stunning Cotswold stone buildings, and of course some lovely accommodation.

Your options for where to stay on the Cotswold Way are nearly endless as you’ll be able to choose from an array of campgrounds, bed & breakfast inns, and boutique hotels. This means that nearly any budget can be accommodated by the lodging options on the Cotswold Way.

This Cotswold Way Accommodation Guide has been designed to help you understand your options for each stop along the route and get the most out of your walk.

Bed and breakfast on the Cotswold Way

 

In This Cotswold Way Accommodation Guide

Should I reserve my Cotswold Way accommodation in advance?

The simple answer to this question is a resounding yes!

The Cotswolds are a popular tourist destination for both the English as well as international tourists. That means that accommodation is often fully booked for weeks or months in advance, especially during the peak summer season.

So, for those walking the Cotswold Way we highly recommend reserving your accommodation well in advance, especially if walking during the summer.

When booking for peak season in the Cotswolds, the earlier the better. If you are able, we recommend trying to reserve the most in-demand accommodation up to 3-4 months in advance. Even if you plan to incorporate a bit on spontaneity into your walk it is advised to at least phone ahead to your next destination before arriving.

English breakfast

Expect a filling breakfast at any of the B&Bs on the Cotswold Way.

 

Cotswold Way Accommodation Cost

Given that the Cotswold Way rarely strays far from civilization you’ll have plenty of options to create your perfect itinerary. This can mean taking your time and spending two weeks on the walk, or speeding through in 6-7 days.

Whichever your personal preference is, you can rest assured that you’ll have no shortage of itinerary options.

Similarly, you can personalize the cost of the accommodation you select for your walk to meet your budget.

Do keep in mind that the Cotswolds are a very expensive part of England, especially when it comes to lodging. The popularity of visiting the area means that hotel and B&B prices tend to be quite a bit higher than other parts of the country.

Nightly cost also varies widely across the Cotswold Way, with more popular destinations such as Bath costing more than some of the rural areas of the walk. Given all of these factors it can be difficult to pin down average costs for the Cotswold Way, but we’ve taken a stab at it below:

  • B&B/Guesthouse/Hotel: £90+ (per person/per night)
  • Bunkhouse/Hostel: £50+ (per person/per night)
  • Camping: £15+ (per person/per night)

In our accommodation directory, we’ve provided our recommendations for high-end, mid-range, and budget options at all of the common stopping points along the Cotswold Way. We’ve defined those categories as follows:

  • High-End: £95+ (per person/per night)
  • Mid-Range: £50-90 (per person/per night)
  • Budget:<£50 (per person/per night)

Note that not every stop along the walk will feature accommodation that fits neatly into each of the categories above. In those cases we’ve included multiple options in a specific price point based on what is available.

Path on the Cotswold Way

 

Cotswold Way Accommodation Directory & Map

Looking for accommodation on the Cotswold Way can be overwhelming. There are a plethora of options, many of which can prove difficult to discern their value. In the accommodation directory below we’ve distilled this information into an easy to ready format with key details about your options, as well as our recommendations for every budget.

We’ve organized our list to follow most variations of the classic north to south Cotswold Way itinerary from Chipping Campden to Bath.

You can also view all of the accommodation providers in this directory on the interactive map below.

Looking for more Cotswold Way resources? Check out our Cotswold Way | Maps & Routes article here.

Looking for an easy way to access Cotswold Way maps and accommodation information on your phone? Check out the Hiiker app! It’s a valuable tool to have with you on the trail. 

Read the directory in its entirety or jump to a specific stopping point from the list below:

Bath on the Cotswold Way

 

Chipping Campden

High-End: Cotswold House Hotel and Spa

If you’re interested in starting your Cotswold Way walk off with a bit of luxury then look no further than the Cotswold House Hotel & Spa. The comfortable beds and on-site spa are just what you need before embarking on your journey. Be sure to stick around for breakfast before setting out!

Mid-Range: Eight Bells Inn

The charming Eight Bells Inn is always a top pick in Chipping Campden. Located in a historic and charming building the friendly staff will have you feeling right at home. However, what really sets the Eight Bells Inn apart is the excellent food available in the on-site restaurant.

Budget: Volunteer Inn

The Volunteer Inn is centrally located at the end of High Street in Chipping Campden and provides excellent value for the money. You’ll be easy walking distance to a host of nearby amenities and be able to retire to your comfortable bed at the end of the night. Highly recommended!

Chipping Campden accommodation Cotswold Way

 

Broadway

High-End: The Lygon Arms Hotel

The Lygon Arms is set in a palatial looking structure constructed from beautiful Cotswold stone. Perfectly blending contemporary and classic design, each of the rooms is carefully curated. This is an excellent option for those looking for bespoke accommodation in Broadway.

Mid-Range: The Broadway Hotel

The Broadway Hotel features 19 well thought out rooms that make a great mid-range option in Broadway. The structure of the hotel dates back to the 16th century, but guests will enjoy modern amenities. Guests give rave reviews to the breakfast, the perfect way to start a day on the Cotswold Way.

Budget: Horse & Hound Inn

A friendly pub-accommodation option in Broadway the Horse & Hound Inn is a great budget option. The convivial atmosphere and friendly staff make this a popular spot for walkers. Enjoy a pint at the pub and mingle with the locals.

 

Stanton

Mid-Range: The Old Post House

The Old Post House B&B offers quiet and private accommodation in Stanton. Choose from a converted shepherd’s hut or the beautiful Garden Room, located in a separate building. There are only two rooms here, ensuring you’ll get great service. Be sure to spend some time enjoying the beautiful gardens.

Mid-Range: The Vine at Cotswold Riding

Set in the center of Stanton and part of the large Cotswolds Riding equestrian center, the Vine offers classic B&B accommodation. A homey spot, the roaring fire and simple guest rooms evoke a classic Cotswold vibe.

 

Winchcombe

High-End: The Lion Inn

Located just off the Cotswold Way, the Lion Inn offers beautiful guest rooms to weary Cotswold Way walkers. Staff go above and beyond to ensure you have a comfortable stay and the rooms are spotlessly clean. While certainly on the higher end of the price spectrum, you’ll get great value for your money here.

Mid-Range: The White Hart Inn

The White Hart Inn is located in the thick of the action in Winchcombe and right on the Cotswold Way. This pub accommodation provides basic rooms with loads of character and incredibility friendly staff.

Budget: Wesley House

The Wesley House is known for its outstanding breakfasts and simple guest rooms. Set in a Tudor style building the Wesley House presents the best value in Winchcombe. With just four rooms available be sure to book early.

 

Cleeve Hill

High-End: Malvern View Bed & Breakfast

The Malvern View B&B offers views of Cleeve Hill from its cozy lounge and features exceptionally friendly hosts. The rooms are thoughtfully adorned, the breakfast excellent, and the grounds well kept. This is an excellent family run B&B, which is what a trip to the Cotswolds is all about!

Mid-Range: Cleeve Hill Hotel

The well cared for Cleeve Hill Hotel features 13 rooms and makes a great mid-range option in Cleeve Hill. The owner ensures all guest’s needs are met and does a splendid breakfast. Views from the rooms are exceptional as well.

Budget: Rising Sun Hotel

The Rising Sun Hotel is a great budget-friendly spot featuring a restaurant/pub and lovely back terrace. The rooms are basic, but all are clean and functional. The Hotel is located just off the Cotswold Way making this a popular place to overnight for walkers.

Cleeve Hill

Cleeve Hill, the high point of the Cotswold Way.

 

Cheltenham

Mid-Range: DoubleTree Cheltenham

The DoubleTree is more convenient than most Cheltenham options for Cotswold Way walkers, as it is located on the edge of town near the trail. You’ll get a predictable experience here with comfortable rooms, a good breakfast, and well-maintained facilities.

Mid-Range: The London Inn

The London Inn offers a classic pub hotel in Cheltenham. You’ll have to walk a bit further off the Cotswold Way to reach the Inn, but you’ll be rewarded with a friendly and cozy place to spend the night. The rooms are basic, but the breakfast is exceptional!

Budget: Colgate Farm B&B

The best located option near Cheltenham for Cotswold Way walkers, the Colgate Farm B&B is located just off the trail. This pastoral B&B has all of the rural Cotswold charm you could ask for along with friendly owners. While not the most luxurious, this is a great place to spend the night.

 

Birdlip

Mid-Range: Royal George Hotel

The only accommodation in Birdlip, the Royal George Hotel offers good value. The staff is very welcoming and there is a great atmosphere in the on-site pub. While the bathrooms could use some updating, the Royal George is overall an excellent option.

 

Painswick

High-End: The Painswick

The Painswick is one of the best hotels on the Cotswold Way and we highly recommend a stay here for anyone passing through. This beautiful hotel does everything right, from the excellent food, comfortable rooms, and friendly staff. A bit of a splurge, but well worth it!

Mid-Range: The Falcon Inn

The Falcon Inn is a cozy and well-run option in Painswick. The rooms are beautifully decorated and a stay here won’t break the bank. Guests give it great reviews for its excellent location right in the center of Painswick as well as for its accommodating staff.

Budget: Troy House

The Troy House is a lovely bed & breakfast that provides an affordable option in Painswick. The friendly owners are very welcoming to walkers and the back garden is a welcome respite for tired legs. Highly recommended.

 

King’s Stanley

Mid-Range: Orchardene Bed & Breakfast

The Orchardene Bed & Breakfast is a classic Cotswold bed and breakfast. Friendly owners, a beautiful building, and a hearty breakfast all make this a great option for walkers in King’s Stanley. Be sure to book early as they only have two rooms.

Mid-Range: Valley Views B&B

The Valley Views B&B is the most convenient option in King’s Stanley as it is located mere steps from the Cotswold Way. Beautiful views, a manicured garden, and excellent owners make this a great mid-range option for walkers.

Budget: The White Hart

The White Hart is a bit further from the trail but provides excellent, budget-friendly accommodation. This free house has clean rooms and a great breakfast, everything the Cotswold Way walkers could need. Although it will require a bit more walking from the trail to reach, we still think this could be your best bet in the area.

 

Dursley

Mid-Range: Woodland House B&B

Accommodation in Dursely is a bit limited, but luckily there is the excellent Woodland House B&B. Set is a peaceful residential neighborhood, the friendly owners will welcome you with open arms. The cozy rooms and tasty breakfast will have you ready for your next day on the walk!

 

Wotton-under-Edge

Mid-Range: The Swan Hotel

The Swan Hotel provides a good mid-range option for walkers stopping in Wotton-under-Edge. The rooms are very comfortable, with many featuring additional seating areas to relax. Located right in the center of town you’ll also have easy access to shops, restaurants, and anything else you may need.

 

Tormarton

Mid-Range: Little Smithy B&B

Little Smithy sits in the center of the small village of Tormarton, right on the Cotswold Way. This family run B&B hosts plenty of walkers, so you’ll be well taken care of. There are only two rooms here, both located in a small cottage separate from the main house.

Mid-Range: Best Western Compass Inn

This predictable option offers good value for the money on the edge of Tormarton. The Best Western gets mixed reviews, but overall provides an excellent option for Cotswold Way walkers.

 

Cold Ashton

Mid-Range: Cornflake Cottage B&B

The Cornflake Cottage is a lovey, rural B&B just north of Cold Ashton in Pennsylvania. There are only two rooms here, and the outgoing owners will have you feeling right at home. Beautiful pastoral views make this a restful place to spend the night.

Mid-Range: Whittington Farm B&B

Located right on the Cotswold Way in Cold Ashton, is the Whittington Farm B&B. This lovely guest house has just two rooms and anyone who stays here can’t seem to say enough about how great it is. The perfect place to spend what is likely you last night on the Cotswold Way.

 

Bath

High-End: The Gainsborough

Let’s face it, at the end of a long walk there is nothing better than splurging for a luxurious hotel stay. For those with the same mindset, we highly recommend staying a night at The Gainsborough in central Bath. This five star accommodation is sure to be just what the doctor ordered after having just completed the Cotswold Way.

Mid-Range: The Rising Sun Inn

For those who still want a relaxing stay, but without the price tag of some of the fancier options look no further than the Rising Sun Inn. Set just across the river from the center of Bath you’ll enjoy the location as well as the great staff and comfortable rooms.

Budget: Z Hotel

The Z Hotel is a great budget option in a city that is known for its expensive lodging. The more affordable rooms don’t have a window, but you’ll have extra money to enjoy a pint at one of the many pubs. The friendly staff make this our top pick for budget accommodation in Bath.

 

River in Bath, UK

Be sure to spend some time exploring Bath at the end of your Cotswold Way walk.

 

What’s Next?

Check out our other great Cotswold Way Resources:

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