Cedar Pass Campground, Badlands National Park— S.D. from Spectacular National Park Campgrounds
Spectacular National Park Campgrounds
Cedar Pass Campground, Badlands National Park— S.D.
This campground is equipped with 96 level campsites, and each offers striking views of the South Dakota badlands. Here outdoor lovers will have the chance to soak up everything from stunning sunsets and vibrant plants to rare wildlife encounters and incomparable star-gazing opportunities. “Summer night sky viewing is offered at the campground’s amphitheater Friday through Monday nights,” says National Park Service spokesperson Kathy Kupper. “After the evening ranger program, you can stay to enjoy the spectacular night sky. Telescopes are provided. The ranger will point out constellations, stars, and planets.”
Wheeler Peak Campground, Great Basin National Park— Nev.
This campground’s most prominent features include the chance to explore the alluring marble rock formations inside Lehman Caves, a landscape littered with lush 5,000-year-old pine trees and of course, the towering shadow of Wheeler Peak’s 13,063-foot tall summit. The grounds host 37 individual sites and are situated just 14 miles from the Lehman Caves Visitor Center.
Elk Mountain Campground, Wind Cave National Park— S.D.
Wind Cave National Park campers will most appreciate this park for providing easy access to one of world’s longest caves, which is named for the barometric winds that linger at its entrance. At the Elk Mountain Campground you’ll also find yourself surrounded by flowing grasslands, tree-lined hillsides and a variety of wildlife like bison, elk and prairie dogs.
Morefield Campground, Mesa Verde National Park— Colo.
In 1907 this historic campground was host to the first ever National Park Service evening ranger campfire program. Today the tradition continues with a nightly ranger presentation in the park’s amphitheater. This Colorado campground also provides campers with plenty of hiking opportunities with many trails beginning within the grounds and leading up to stunning views of the valleys below. And for campers who like just a little bit of luxury, the café in Morefield’s full-service village puts up an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast.
Two Medicine Campground, Glacier National Park— Mont.
Aptly named for its close proximity to Glacier National Park’s Two Medicine Lake, this campground is best known for its quiet and serene surroundings. “Sites within the campground are generally shaded by trees, and offer some privacy from other campers,” says Kupper. “There are numerous day hiking opportunities available, including a handicap accessible trail to Running Eagle Falls.” Animal-lovers will especially love Two Medicine for its abundant wildlife populations.
Signal Mountain Campground, Grand Teton National Park— Wyo.
Single Mountain features what Kupper describes as “small and intimate” sites surrounded by spruce and fir trees and with a camp store and basic amenities located close by. Campers in search of outstanding views will appreciate Single Mountain for its abundance of outstanding mountain and lake views.
Manzanita Lake Campground, Lassen Volcanic National Park— Calif.
As its name conveniently notes, this campground sits next to Manzanita Lake which means campers are presented with plenty of opportunities for swimming, fishing, kayaking and a host of other water sports. With an elevation of 6,000 feet, the grounds are known for featuring cool summertime temperatures. RVs and trailers are welcomed here and the National Park Service says this site is particularly ideal for families.
Sentinel Campground, Kings Canyon National Park— Calif.
“Sentinel Campground is located in an incredibly beautiful section of the park, nestled along a creek and surrounded by canyon walls,” says Kupper. A camping trip here will set you amidst evergreen tree forests and offer easy access to wide meadow grasslands, several small waterfalls and plenty of popular hiking trails.
Juniper Campground, Theodore Roosevelt National Park— N.D.
This badlands campground might feel secluded at first but campers here will share the land with a wide range of wildlife including bison, wild horses, buffalo, cotton-tailed rabbits, deer and longhorn steer… Just to name a few of the mammals that call this national park home. The grounds are located along the Little Missouri River and the park’s 50 sites are open year-round.
Devil's Garden Campground, Arches National Park— Utah
Located 18 miles from the entrance to Arches National Park, among other scenic surroundings, this campground’s landscape is decorated with natural sandstone arches and fins. The grounds are open year round and offer opportunities for some of the best hikes in the country, but the desert setting is known for hot summers and chilly winters so campers are advised to prepare for the seasons accordingly.
Big Meadows Campground, Shenandoah National Park— Va.
Ideal for first-time campers who won't want to go without a few amenities, Big Meadows offers visitors a secluded and scenic setting, but within close proximity to major facilities. Also nearby are many of the park’s popular hiking rails and other natural attractions. “Three waterfalls are within walking distance and a meadow with abundant plant growth and wildlife is nearby,” says Kupper.
Hosmer Grove Campground, Haleakala National Park— Hawaii
Situated at the 7,000-foot summit level of Haleakalā National Park, this stunning campsite features a self-guided nature trail, which Kupper says makes for a beautiful early-morning hike as the area’s native birds begin to awaken. Despite its tropical location, the high elevation of this campground makes for chilly nights (the NPS says that nighttime temperatures can drop as low as 32-degrees F), so campers are encouraged to pack accordingly.
Jumbo Rocks Campground, Joshua Tree National Park— Calif.
Visitors here can set up camp among the park’s giant granite rock formations and will also find some solitude among its winding access roads. Although this campground sits 1,000 feet higher than some of the parks other sites, summertime temperatures can still reach up to 110-degrees F, which means campers must come prepared with ample food, water and electrolyte supplements. However, Kupper says the site’s extra elevation allows for some of the best views of Southern California’s night skies. Additional attractions here include ample opportunities for rock climbing.
Brooks Camp Campground, Katmai National Park— Alaska
Part of the quintessential Alaskan scenery, Brooks Camp visitors will easily be able to catch a glimpse of brown fears fishing for and feasting on wild salmon. According to Kupper the campground attracts visitors from around the world who also come to enjoy world-class fishing and immerse themselves in the area’s storied past. “It is also a starting point for many backcountry adventures,” says Kupper. “Daily bus tours from Brooks Camp provide easy access to the geologic splendor of the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes, the site of the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century.”
Gulpha Gorge Campground, Hot Springs National Park— Ark.
Nestled between two mountains and next to a creek, the scenic setting of Gulpha Gorge Campgrounds is just one attraction that draws visitors to this Hot Springs National Park campsite. Of course, the biggest draw is the park’s natural hot springs, which people have visited to soak, heal and relax in for hundreds of years.
Cinnamon Bay Campground, Virgin Islands National Park— Virgin Islands
Whether you choose a beachside site or one tucked away between palm trees, this Caribbean campground offers a laidback camping experience incomparable to any other. Campers can choose to set up a site with their own shelter, rent large canvas tents that come furnished with equipment or book a stay in one of the ground’s screened cottages that come fully-equipped with propane grills and electricity. A restaurant and camp store are located nearby.