Family friendly, great for tent camping and R.V.’s. The River is your backyard, great for hiking and lots of wildlife to see! No showers.
A little difficult to access if you’ve never been but worth it. Direct access to 100+ miles of the Maah Daah Hey trail!
Pro's- Close to the town of Medora with so much to do for families. Wildlife is abundant in the park. Nice clean campground. Large spaces for tents and RV's. Deer, prarie dogs, bison, turkeys…and wild horses!
Con's- Road construction going into the park with around 10-20 minute wait.
This park is close to Theodore Roosevelt National Park The bathroom and shower were clean. That’s the end of the good news. The sites are small and very tight. We couldn’t open our canopy. When we stepped out our door we were looking right in the window of the neighbors. Lots of dust and bugs. The staff was not very friendly. They have the only campground in town, and know it. Next time I will camp 20 miles away and drive to the park.
I think I have found my favorite campground. Has 3 section one I think is for larger campers though there are only about 10 sites. Another is for horses and has corrals with the sites. The one I stayed in is for smaller campers. Quiet and primative with others that wanted to get back to nature. Not one single generator!! Sites are shaded and private.
Right on the highway so loud traffic all night. 1 pit toilet, 4 sites with picnic tables. Easy walk to a great view of the badlands. The sign says it is $6 a night but there is no method to pay so it was free. 10 minutes from the gate to the North unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.
We were one of a few campers in this campground. Amazingly vast and wild! Highly recommend!!! We woke up to find bison all around us. Truly a beautiful and unique experience I'll never forget.
great place for going on rides and over night visits. see lots of people hiking the trails and bringing their dogs.
Nice little spot only ten minutes from Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Lots of RV traffic which comes with lots of generator noise.
Pit toilets, and a shower house that gives you eight minutes for $1. Sites are reservable and cost $12 a night but there is a day use fee of $7 that is not included in the site fee. $19 a night unless you have a ND state parks pass. Tent sites have lots of shade and the RV and equestrian areas are pretty exposed.
We didn't make a reservation and were able to get a site. We were there by 8am and it seemed like we were the first ones looking for a site. The host was great and gave us great recommendations. We ended up picking a back in campsite. Our site had a picnic table and an elevated grill. There was a water station across the street but the water was yellow and tasted gross. The bathroom was a bit of a further walk but not too bad.
The temperatures were nice. It wasn't too cold in the morning. Be careful with wildlife, there was a bison that walked by a neighboring campsite but was pretty harmless. He was just grazing.
Great place to view the stars.
Not much privacy. The site or group site that we stay at has no grass, is on top of a hill with no protection or privacy which most of the campground is similar. There is also a bar just around the corner which gets quite noisy if bands are playing on the weekends. There is one restroom facility with showers.
We stayed here over one night while driving from Wisconsin out to Glacier National Park. This campsite is on the southern end of the park close to I-94 exit.
I just love this place! The feel of the park is unlike anything I've experienced in that it is expansive, rough, beautiful, unforgiving, and remarkably unforgettable.
Keep these things in mind:
- This campground has amenities that are not kept up very well. Toilets are on the dirty side with outside critters coming inside.
- There is a sense of roughing it even without being out there all alone. This isn't a "pretty park," but rather a natural park.
- You will see Bison and you will see prairie dogs. All other wild beasts are hit or miss. The prairie dog fields are beyond belief in their quantity. I mean there are a TON of PDs.
The families that were there were nice and talkative if you engaged them. Truly a pleasant experience.
Do yourself a favor and drive/hike the park before it opens to the public. Unabated driving for the views is worth it and only compliments your morning Joe.
wow, what a find! We had planned to travel through the area but hadn’t planned to stop—until we hit the Tourist Center at the Montana border and found a brochure for thus park. If you love geology and want a quieter less crowded and more accessible experience than the Theodore Roosevelt National Park nearby, then this place is for you! There are several campgrounds and dispersed campsites to choose from, the RV campground is small and packed and a bit barren, but the tent sites are magnificent. There are incredible canyon views from the “Pine on Rocks” campground close to the park amphitheater, but the campsites are kind of on the edge of a cliff so would not be good with kids or pets. The trails are magnificent, and you can hike to all kinds of geological wonders, even some dinosaur digs in action! However, don’t do like we did as we came in August and the heat is BRUTAL and we werent able to hike as much as we wanted. However, we were pleased that our dog was able to join us as we discovered dogs arent allowed on the hiking trails over at the National Park
Along the Little Missouri River, this is a nice place to connect with nature. Set in the park, restroom is a bit of a walk, sites are tucked away from main park traffic-which was minimal when we visited in August. We saw: elk, deer in velvet, bison, prairie dogs,horses, spectacular stars. It’s very close to Medora and all the little wholesome town has to offer.
Small, family-run campground
The best thing about this campground was its location… close to town, close to the South Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park and close to the Mefora Musical. The campground was clean but the sites werevery close together. The campground had lots of cottonwood trees so the cotton was blowing all over when we were the in June. It did have full hook-ups, so that was a plus.
This campground in Theodore Roosevelt National Park near Medora ND has 76 sites. Half of the sites, the even-numbered ones, are not reservable. Sites 55-66 are walk in tent sites; parking spots and grills for these sites are numbered so you have a specific site.
We arrived before 10:30 am on a Sunday and sites were being claimed quickly. There were 7 of us choosing sites at that time. The hosts had a whiteboard that listed available sites; we took a photo of the list and chose quickly as we drove around because sites that were listed as available were already being claimed. We ended up on a reservable site that was open for the next several nights. The host couple was really on the ball and their attention helped keep the site selection process orderly. After you put your tag up, they fold it over later in the day and mark your departure date. This is a practice that is used in many campgrounds.
Cottonwood has been full every day since Memorial Day so you can't show up in the evening or possibly even mid-afternoon and expect to find an open site.
This campground has no hookups but has flush toilets, sinks, potable water spigots, a sink for washing dishes/disposing of grey water, a place for filling water tanks, trash disposal and firewood for sale. There are charcoal grates for cooking that can also be use for campfires, but there are no fire rings; your campfire will be a few feet off the ground in something that I think of as a grill!
Showers? No, but there area couple campgrounds in Medora that have showers for $5.
If you stay here, you're obviously here to see Theodore Roosevelt NP. Both the campground and park are worth a visit. The scenery is incredible and gave us a new view of North Dakota. There is a hike near Pleasant Valley Ranch where you can use a few trails to make a 5+ mile loop that will show you everything the park has to offer - Little Missouri River (and you have to cross it at the beginning and end), prairie dog towns, bison herds and beautiful scenery. I highly recommend this as a way to see the park from a better vantage point than the highway.
One complaint - the position of our site (#19) had some people think it was acceptable to cut through our site on their way to the bathroom. Do you walk through someone's home to shorten your walk? Didn't think so but 3 people did within 30 minutes.
Facilities are well maintained with good water and power at sites. Area is beautiful and you can wade in the river right behind the tent area. Only drawback is lack of privacy between tent sites. Would stay here again.
We stayed in a tent with electricity. The tent site was on the back stretch with the badlands as a backdrop. There was not a fire ring at the campsite but we didn’t feel like we were missing anything. Our site was extremely small wIth no room for our camp chairs. Alao, there was some inconsistency in sizes of the tent area sites. Bathrooms were clean. Showers were alright, they could use some work on the ventilation.
Cottonwood Campground forms a loop near the Little Missouri River. It's a short convenient drive from the visitor's center, and near the beginning of the larger loops that bring you to all parts of the south unit of the park. Bison wander in and around the campground, which offers 76 shady sites . Wild horses can also be found within the park, along the circular drives that take you around the colorful buttes. Sunrises and sunsets are quite beautiful.
The campground was arranged very nicely. Though there are many sites, most are tucked away for some amount of privacy and quiet time. The bison roam the campground often. Being on the river is fun for recreation and wildlife viewing.
Next to the little Missouri River. Most campsites have shade and tucked in. Ours was a light exposed- but not bad. No campfire rings. They have raised grills that can be used as to have a small fire.
I didn’t have a spot in the National Park so this was next. The park is right on the horse and hiking trail so I thought we could take advantage.
The sign in was confusing. Be sure to stop at the ranger station before entering the campground. The ranger set me up with a site that was out in the open. There are some shaded sites but they fill up. Another camper told me that many didn’t show up because of the rain storms.
There is plenty of space between sites even if it’s in the open. Water is available throughout the campground. Vault toilets are in three spots but it’s quite a long walk to get to them. There is a shower house near the front. I didn’t expect to pay for showers but the site is only $12 so another $1 is fine.
This was an ok spot for us. I would try some of the other primitive campgrounds next time. We loved being close the the NP and the town of Medora.
The campsites are pretty spread out here with the exception of the tent area. There are beautiful sites right along the river. No dump station or showers.
We were thankful to have found Buffalo Gap Campground on our return drive home from Glacier National Park. There are not a lot of options when driving the lonely highways of Northrn Montana. When we arrived at the campsite at Midnight during a thunderstorm, we were surprised to see so many available sites that were level for our small A-frame Popup. While located right off the highway, the noise was not excessive. Due to other reviews we had anticipated paying to take a shower; however the coin slots were taped over and we showered for free with plenty of pressure and hot water. We spoke to the very friendly camp host the next morning and he confirmed the nightly charge of $6 per site. If you have the National Park Senior pass it is only $3!!! Quite the bargain for a night's stay in a very clean and convenient campground. Note: The cost may increase to $10 in the future, but even that is still a bargain!