Standard (tent/RV)
Dispersed
Group
Tent Sites
Equestrian
No Fires
No Pets
No Drinking Water
About Sage Creek
Operator
National Park Service
Access
Drive In
Walk In
Features
ADA Accessible
Alcohol Allowed
No Drinking Water
No Electric Hookups
No Fires
No Firewood Available
No Market
No Pets
Phone Service
Picnic Table
Not Reservable
No Sanitary Dump
No Sewer Hookups
No Showers
Toilets
Trash Available
No Water Hookups
No WiFi
Location
Sage Creek is located in Badlands National Park in South Dakota
Latitude
43.8941 N
Longitude
-102.4139 W
Get Directions
37 Reviews of Sage Creek
Buffalo and prairie dogs!

Nice, clean campground in the national park. The campground itself is free but you need to purchase a pass for the park. No host or registration required. There are some marked sites in the center of the loop but you can camp pretty much wherever you can find a spot, as long as you're within the campground area. While we were cooking dinner a buffalo walked right through! Clean restrooms, but no water so remember to bring some. There were hiking trails around the campground and the sunrise was beautiful from the top of the hill.

Beyond cool but crowded.

This was a really cool campsite, mostly because of the wildlife and the views! It’s only about 30 minutes away from the Badlands NP, and very close to Wall,SD. The campsite is actually made around a flat spot in the prairie lands, and the tents are set up in a circle. We set up camp around 5pm, and went to visit the Badlands which is a definite must! Upon coming back, we ran into a herd of bison on the road and because they were so close we got some awesome pictures! Prairie dogs are also everywhere, which if you can be quiet and quick enough you can maybe snap a pic! The only problem with this campsite is as it’s a popular campground, the amount of people there was too much for us. We had our tent moved by a group of rowdy people who kept us up at night and woke us up in the morning. Nonetheless, we had an awesome time and I would definitely recommend staying up long enough to check out the stars because it was quite a sight! Also we were traveling in a 2wheel drive, and the last part of the road to the campsite is a bumpy one so drive slow..!

Awesome

Super nice spot. No real negatives for free camping. Only problem I had was a ton of late arrivals keeping me up with lights and noise, but once again for a free night of camping I couldn’t care less.

Campground within the badlands

Free camping within the badlands! There are designated spots but also people just randomly popped up their tents/RVs! Lots of prairie dogs and buffalo around!

Amazing free campsite

We stayed here for one night as our first stop on our road trip and we were SO impressed! The prairie dogs were right there in the middle of the campground and bison roamed the fields around it. We stayed in our tent and there was plenty of spots even into the evening. Nice hiking trails right off the campsite loop.

Free Camping IN the Badlands

A crowded, but nice, site right in Badlands National Park! A great scenic drive in on awesome and well maintained gravel roads. Large loop site with tons of space for tents and parking. Definitely noisy, but well worth being inside the park. Overall well maintained bathrooms, tons of little trails, and a creek nearby. Stunning sunset views and distant views of Badland choss formations! One thing to mention—there is a massive prairie dog CIVILIZATION living in the campsite, so be prepared for squeaky little neighbors.

Easy, breezy, beautiful

The other reviewers had it right. Sage Creek is a sweet little spot within Badlands National Park. Definitely pay your park entrance fee! BUT it’s true - this spot is completely free. Lots of people dig this spot. Doesn’t feel too crowded though. Tons of tents, vans, and car campers fit into this somewhat small but open space. Bison are common visitors. Plus, there is a prairie dog town right in the center of the loop the road creates in the camp. They are so fascinating to watch! There are two basic but clean restrooms. Several pic nic tables with small shade shelters. A nearby creek for water filtering / road trip baths. Make sure to bring lots of water or a filter people! We saw folks asking around for extra water. Be prepared. Definitely would highly recommend for anyone traveling through South Dakota. Badlands National Park is so unique and so special.

Weird and wonderful in Badlands National Park

Our one night in Sage Creek has to be one of my favorite campground camping memories and is probably #1 for experiencing the National Parks. It's a strange spot. Just a big circular drive with not trees, spots are sort of marked by tables, but it gets too crowded for people to limit themselves to one camper per table. It's enough of a drive out there and people get there at hours, that people will just crowd in even if its officially overfilled, not that there an easy way to tell if it is or not. So definitely not your typical camping experience. But it is a free place to camp in a national park and doesnt require any reservations. There was a prairie dog colony right in the middle of the campground. You wont see the typical bonkers badlands geological features on this side of the park, but the grasslands are gorgeous and the flat spot where the campgrounds are is nestled between hills that were fun to scamper up. No water or fires. Come for the camaraderie, not the isolation.

Wide open spaces with plenty of room

We came in late, and although its seems like there are only about 10 designated sites with tables and the like, there's a bit off allowance for overflow and no one seemed to mind.  Got to the Badlands just in time to see it in the fading light while our eardrums got used to the silence. After that we had to force our way though a herd of bufallo, but they weren't hostile or scared. It's a long trek to get back there, just don't get in a hurry.

There is one vault toilet and some trash cans scattered about.

Primitive and Wonderful Campground

You have to travel down 12 miles of gravel road in the Badlands to reach this campground but it is so worth it! The campsites are all on the outward edge of a big circular road, pretty close together, but still very quiet and respectful. There is NO COST and there are 2 vault toilet facilities provided. The adorable prairie dogs are everywhere but go to sleep with the sun. During the evening, a wild bison came to the campground edge to graze. The campground filled up by dark, so be sure to get there early for a place to camp. Picnic tables are also provided, some with sun shades.