As the least populated state in the U.S., Wyoming remains a wild place. Its wide open spaces are ripe for free camping; almost half of the state is public land. With campgrounds filling up daily and quickly in Yellowstone and Grand Teton, the state’s two national parks (and among the country’s most popular), visiting top sites like those can be cumbersome if you’re looking for a Wyoming campsite with a view. However, savvy campers know that both Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Park are next to forest land. That means there’s free camping in Wyoming that boasts mountain views, exposure to wildlife, and easy access to your favorite destinations.
Where to Find Free Camping Around Wyoming
Free camping goes by many names. Call it dispersed, primitive, backcountry, dry camping or boondocking, it’s still going to be camping with limited—or often zero—amenities. The trade-off is that you don’t pay a facility fee. You also have the freedom to choose your campsite, whether that means nestled between deep in a forest or pulled off an isolated road. And in a state like Wyoming, you could be the only camper for miles.
Two federal divisions manage free camping options in the U.S., the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). You can also camp for free on some Wildlife Management Areas, county and city parks, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers land, but be sure to research those options before you go.
Whether you’re looking for a mountain landscape, rocks to climb, or waters for your fishing rod, we’ve got you covered. Here are some of the best options for free camping in Wyoming, with some general tips to help you camp in style.
1. Vedauwoo — Buford, WY
Just beyond Vedauwoo’s developed campground is Vedauwoo dispersed camping. Vedauwoo is a rock climber’s playground, set amidst a collection of giant slabs. Designated spots can accommodate tents and RVs, but you’ll need to visit the developed campground for amenities. The Dyrt camper Carrie C. notes that the camping areas are spaced very far apart from each other, meaning you get plenty of privacy.
In order to avoid the risk of getting kicked out, limit camping to 14 consecutive days and follow the seven Leave No Trace principles. Minimizing impact keeps Wyoming pristine. Keep an eye out for nearby sections of public land closed off to free camping. They’re marked with signs that say “no camping” or “camp only in designated areas.”
2. Beartooth Scenic Byway — Northern Wyoming
The Beartooth Scenic Byway features free dispersed camping in Wyoming’s along the wilderness near the main road. With a crest of 11,000 feet, the byway gives travelers expansive views of the Absaroka and Beartooth mountains, as well as the expansive Shoshone National Forest. The Dyrt camper Stavros M. attests it’s an “amazing spot to stay.”
Residents of Wyoming love to hunt. Be cautious camping during big game season, which usually runs mid-September through January. If you’re in a popular hunting area, wear bright colors and make yourself known. And be aware of road conditions, as your car or RV may not like the rough Wyoming back roads. The Beartooth Scenic Byway is clear for two-wheel-drive vehicles, but some of the summit’s access roads are rutted.
3. Upper Teton View — Popo Agie Wilderness Area, WY
Upper Teton View dispersed camping is the unicorn of free camping in Wyoming. Once in a while, someone mentions having seen it, but most people think it’s mythical. It’s real, my friends. I’ll let you in on a secret; there’s also a Lower Teton View. Both are on U.S. Forest Service land, so they don’t have any amenities. But what they lack in amenities they make up for in romantic scenery and memories. You can bring a tent or RV.
Since you don’t have access to amenities, you’ll need to bring water and a filtration system. Be prepared to relieve yourself in the freedom of the backcountry. Bring a trowel to dig a 6” hole for your waste, and pack your TP out with you. To help keep the area clean, you can pack out your trash and recyclables to follow more general Leave No Trace guidelines.
4. Grayrocks Reservoir — Guernsey, WY
The Grayrocks Reservoir Public Access area allows free camping on the north shore of the reservoir. The Grayrocks Reservoir is a home for many species, the white pelican being the most sought after. The south beach has vault toilets, but there are no amenities on the north end. The Dyrt campers Jason & Sara S. suggest you “check the weather before you go,” as it can get pretty windy.
Dispersed camping is always first come, first serve. Don’t get comfortable within 200 feet of any road, body of water, or trailhead, as those are the most important guidelines to follow to avoid getting booted. Most dispersed camping doesn’t include a fire ring or grill, so you should know how to collect wood and start a fire. Before lighting up, make sure there isn’s a fire ban or permit requirement; Wyoming has frequent wildfires, so restrictions do happen.
5. Weeping Rock — Fontenelle, WY
Situated on the Green River, Weeping Rock campground is the choice spot for anglers looking to snag a plump trout or Kokanee salmon. There are 16 designated sites, half of which accommodate RVs (without hookups). You even get the luxury of a toilet, picnic table, and fire ring. The Dyrt camper Jessi B. warns that it “does get busy on the weekends” so show up early to grab a site near the water.
You can bring your four-legged companion with you, but make sure they’re safe and within sight. Wyoming is home to buffalo, deer, elk, moose, bears, and many other critters, so be sure to keep your area clear of anything that will attract unwanted attention.
Resources for Free Camping in Wyoming
You might not be familiar with Wyoming’s geography, so finding free camping can be daunting. Whether you’re tent camping, rolling in a van or RV, or on foot, these resources can help you find free camping near the destinations you enjoy.
- The Dyrt makes it easy to find free camping in Wyoming (or anywhere else). Put Wyoming in the search bar. Under Type, select “dispersed.” Each listing includes a rating and reviews, detailed description and list of features, images, weather report, and geographical data.
- Google Maps is an accessible tool for locating public lands in Wyoming. The green areas are public land. Use the satellite view to get a better idea of roads and access to your destination.
- The USFS website lets you view public lands on a map of Wyoming. You can also select campsites to get more information on USFS campgrounds. If you don’t have WiFi, the U.S. Public Lands app for iPhone and Android does the same thing offline.
- The National Geographic Road Atlas Adventure Edition has maps showing public lands. It’s a great resource to keep in your car, pack, or RV for when you may need a paper solution.
- If you’re traveling by RV, Boondockers Welcome lists free places to park your ride on private property. For a small fee, you can find similar listings on Harvest Hosts and Overnight RV Parking. And rv-camping.org has listings for other boondocking sites.