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I love this place so much. This was my first time camping in Montana. It was breathtaking for me. The lake was so peaceful and clear. The trail around the lake is a nice walk to see all the different views around it. The meadows were full of wildflowers in the summer. The campground is a small loop and spaced out, the lake trail also had a couple of backcountry spots to set up. There’s also a few more trails in the area that were very pretty!!
This was a comfortable campground for RVs and tents. Our 5th-wheel is 28 feet long and fit nicely in the space. Some bigger ones may have trouble fitting into the spaces. All campsites have fire pits and picnic tables and are somewhat private. Many are on a two-tier level and actually have steps with railings to go down or up to the picnic table and fire pit. There is a water with pump handle and a couple pit toilets, but that’s it! Plan to drive a long way if you forgot anything! It is close to the highway making it easy access, but you do get some highway noise at some spaces. There is a campground host, but that person was gone two out of the three days we were there.
This spot is outside the west entrance of Yellowstone and is very convenient for visiting Yellowstone HOWEVER… the mosquitos were crazy. My boyfriend and I took our propane stove into our tent cos we couldn’t stand the mosquitos that much! This spot is beautiful but the mosquitos unfortunately ruined it for us. However I don’t think the mosquitos are always as bad as they were and if you come prepared I’d say it may be worth it. This place is very popular and crowded so come early for a spot.
This campground has to be one of my favorites ever, and that’s definitely saying something! We arrived on this spot after spending a long day at Yellowstone and being bummed we couldn’t get a backcountry pass for the night. But our luck quickly changed when we found this hidden gem, about 20 minutes away from Yellowstone’s west entrance. We followed a dirt road for a short while till arriving upon the lake shore, where we were met by some truly amazing views. With the mountain range reflecting upon the water, and the orange and pink clouds floating above we spent the evening wishing we could stay there forever. After taking many pictures of the view, we set up camp along the waterfront and set a fire (there are about 3/4 campfire rings). We ended up making some awesome bread, mixing only beer and batter together cooked on the fire and it turned out delicious! The only problem was in the morning, after having left the tent open for only 5 minutes at night an unknown critter came into the tent and stung my eyelid, so watch out for bugs!! Still wouldn’t give this any lower of a score, because for us it was truly paradise!!
Crystal Lake is a nice area. To get there it's a mix of about 20 miles of gravel and 1 lane paved roads. The gravel roads are well maintained. The 1 lane paved roads are a little iffy if you're pulling a trailer and its a busy travel day. The lake is beautiful and small enough hike around it if you have a few hours. The surrounding area is gorgeous as well. The campground isn't very big, there's about 20 or so sites in the loop and I believe they are all first come first serve. There is a Group campsite and a cabin which are reserveable. We reserved the Group Site which sits closer to the trail head. ONE thing to know if you reserve the Group site, call ahead during the week and get the lock pass code. We overlooked that requirement and almost had to stay in the regular camping area because the gate was locked. Luckily during the evening the camp host came down to see if we paid the nightly fee and he had the code. That said, the camp host wasn't clearly identified anywhere and apparently they were camped out behind the cabin. It appears that at one point either there was a fire or beetle kill in the meadow that the camp sites are in as there are no trees in the immediate area. Its kind of like an large open area that has a lot of overgrowth. The Group site area has what appears to be a great tent camping layout but the brush is way overgrown and you cant really tell. The regular campground looks the same. Don't get me wrong, the Crystal Lake area is stunning, its just seems like the campgrounds haven't been really tend to in a few years. We saw a few fish being pulled out of the lake, lots of hikers heading up the trails and a few deer passing through the meadow. Overall it was a nice experience. Good hiking trails and beautiful (smaller) lake to play or relax on. One thing it lacked, for us at least, is trees in the campground and area's to ride our SxS.
We stayed here on a trip out to Glacier NP. If you are just passing through to get from point A-B and don't want to get out into the back country, this campsite really fits the bill.
It's clean, maintained and relatively quiet. As others noted, it's essentially free, donations accepted.
Lovely quiet dispersed camping spot by the lake. We had seen other reviews that it was bad for mosquitos but we didn’t see a single one. Room for about 6 sites here with a few prebuilt fire pits. Beautiful views - we loved it.
You need to drive down a dirt road with some pot holes and wash boarding. Would recommend scouting it first if it has been wet and there were some big puddles already.
We were fine in our camper van but big rigs might struggle a little In bad weather.