Standard (tent/RV)
Tent Sites
Fires Allowed
Pets Allowed
Drinking Water
About Steel Creek - Buffalo National River

Steel Creek is a first come, first serve campground in the upper district of the park. It has 26 tent only sites with no electrical amenities, but flush restrooms and water are available from March 15 through November 15. Steel Creek also has 14 first come, first serve horse only sites for campers with horse trailers. ADA Access: Steel Creek Campground does not have any ADA compliant campsites. The restroom facilities are ADA compliant.

January 1st - December 31st
National Park Service
Drive In
Walk In
ADA Accessible
Alcohol Allowed
Drinking Water
Fires Allowed
Pets Allowed
Picnic Table
Trash Available
Water Hookups
Steel Creek - Buffalo National River is located in Buffalo National River in Arkansas
36.042 N
-93.3443 W
Get Directions
Steel Creek Campground is located off of Highway 74 in the the upper district. The campground is approximately 3 miles east of Ponca, Arkansas and 14 miles west of Jasper, Arkansas. The access road to Steel Creek is paved.
14 Reviews of Steel Creek - Buffalo National River
Primitive Camping

Great Campground with restrooms and running water. Campground sits next to the Buffalo River and Roark Bluff background. Lots of wildlife such as deer, elk and if you are lucky black bears. Very quiet and every site has a picnic table. Half of the sites can be reserved. GO!!!! ITS IS A BEAUTIFUL PLACE!!

Beautiful place to stay!

Kayaking, swimming, and fishing were awesome!

Needs improvement

We booked 6 sites of horse camp for Labor Day weekend back in July. They had plenty of time to take care of sites. We got there and the grass was high on all sites. One of the guys with us brought a battery operated weed eater and started to weed eat our area when a park ranger stopped and said we weren’t allowed to weed eat only they are allowed to mow. We asked if they would mow sites and they said NO. The people right down from us on other horse site had to keep horses tied to trailer because weeds were that high you couldn’t get to horse post. One of had brought our RV with horses and were told we weren’t allowed to bring RV even though when we booked it online, it gave us the option to book RV with horses. We usually come to horse camp 5-6 times a year, but think this might be our last time going. Seems they are trying to close down horse camp.. we had reservations on Memorial Day and when we got there it was full of tent campers with NO HORSES but they were allowed to stay there. This place is turning into a joke. You pay $20 a night to get nothing but harassed by the park rangers!!

No road noise

This is one of my all time favorite places to camp. I’ve only ever been in the fall and winter. So it’s quiet. When you first get there it’s a little unnerving because it’s so quiet. There’s no road noise at all. Just nature and the occasional chopping of firewood. It’s all very clean. They have toilets and water spigots that are open til November. And vault toilets for winter.

Beautiful views, easy access

Steel Creek is home to the most iconiv and photographer bluff of the Buffalo National River, Roark Bluff. It is an absolutely gorgeous area and features a short trail to a vantage point for taking pictures of Roarok Bluff as well as access to other Buffalo River hiking trails.

Campground has tent sites, self-pay, and bathrooms with running water. Not as many sites have the trees for hammocking as some of the other campgrounds. Sites have picnic tables and firepits.

Easy access with paved roads up to the campground.G

It does get fairly crowded in the summer, so the best time to visit is a warmer spell during off-season.


Great location close to the river, very primitive, campgrounds can get a little close and are not as private as some! Beautiful views especially in the morning!!

Close sites, beautiful area

We rolled in at 8pm on a Friday night. The sign said "campground full" but thanks to another review we disregarded this and found an open site, as did the person who drove in behind us. The 26 sites are in two layers, one closer to the parking lot, one closer to the woods, river and bluffs. Rangers patrol regularly and are very helpful. There is a ranger station beyond the horse campground which is a pleasant walk or a quick drive. We stopped there to get our National Park stamp! Easy access to a trail directly from the lot, or walk beyond the horse camp to the Old River trail head. Centerpoint Trail is a 15 minute drive away and offers access to the Big Bluff/Goat Trail. Caution drivers: the road in to the campground is windy and steep. A sign warns against bringing RVs. However there were an enormous bus and tons of horse trailers and campers at the bottom of the hill - braver people than I:) Bathrooms are clean, dimly lit at night presumably to keep bugs out. Each site has a lantern pole, fire ring and picnic table. Lost Valley Trail and shelter are a 10-15 minute drive away. Since it was raining we cooked our dinner in the shelter. Overall a beautiful place with great access to multiple trails as well as river access. Sites are a little close, but if you're fine with having neighbors 20 or so feet away, we highly recommend:)

Gorgeous views close hiking

They may not have showers but they do have bathrooms and running water. Right next to the Buffalo River along the gorgeous towering bluff.

Quiet creek connection

This is a great campground, even in early July. It’s quiet and has plenty of space, including restroom facilities. Right behind the campground you will find the creek and the view is amazing. Amongst tons of small rocks and pebbles the water flows freely and the view is perfect. The view from your tent isn’t perfect as it’s surrounded by trees but me and my family found it wonderful!

Clean, accessible and a great starter site!

This is a great campsite if you’re wanting to get outdoors, but aren’t quite adventurous to go full-out. You wake up every morning to the sound of the Buffalo River coursing by just a few hundred yards away, and are greeted by the breathtaking view of the bluffs you are surrounded by!

It has running water, and even a pretty nice public bathroom. Fees are not outrageous, and there is even a site for campers with horses. Overall, it was a great experience, and I’d recommend to all! One thing to consider, however, is to make sure your car has pretty good handling and brakes— as the drive up to the entrance and down to the campsite is steep and curvy (it is paved, though)!