Needing Campground Suggestions for Mt. Rushmore and Yellowstone Area…. HELP!

Discussion in 'General Camping Discussion Forum' started by kmeece, Nov 6, 2013.

  1. kmeece

    kmeece New Member

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    My family is planning a 3 week trip to Yellowstone in June of 2014. We want to pass through the Mt. Rushmore area on the way home or there. We live in Southern Indiana. We will be taking our new travel trailer. So we can stay in any campground. We prefer more of the state park feel for longer stays. The private parks tend to be more crowded. We don't mind staying a night in a park like that, but for our longer stays to would like to not be on top of one another.

    Looking for the highly recommended CG's and the ones to stay away from too!
    Any help would be appreciated!
     
  2. CamL48

    CamL48 New Member

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    There's literally an entire subforum section dedicated entirely to campground suggestions.

    Several threads in there are about Yellowstone and Rushmore ... both make for pretty good search terms, too.

    Good luck.
     
  3. novagirl

    novagirl retired camper

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    For your night in Mt. Rushmore, let me suggest the Rafter J Bar campground in Hill City SD. I know you said you didn't particularly want private but it is a really nice place and fairly close to all the attractions including Mt. Rushmore. I can't put my finger on the pics I took right now but I found one of the entrance.

    [​IMG]

    For Yellowstone, we stayed in West Yellowstone at a private park called Grizzly RV Park. It was very nice but if we ever go again, we would probably stay in Canyon Campground inside the park. We really liked it there and it was close to our favorite sight-the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.

    Grizzly

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    http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a3d701b3127ccef47d4df61bd000000030O11AbOWTJy3Yswe3nw0/cC/f%3D0/ls%3D00301079229620130920215555272.JPG/ps%3D50/r%3D1/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/

    I think if you look up my trip log (Trip Out West) here on the portal there might be some pictures of Canyon Campground in there. Have fun planning. You will LOVE IT!
     
  4. Sumoman

    Sumoman New Member

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    We stayed at Madison in Yellowstone, very cool but no hook ups. We learned too late you can wash in river with proper soap. So we planned out days so we could shower at the areas we visited. This because I was lazy and did not hook up my shower.

    The area has a cool swimming hole very close so every day was ended with a swim in the mountain river.. Cold but fun. Kids loved it.




    CATAPULTAM HABEO. NISI PECUNIAM OMNEM MIHI DABIS AD CAPUT TUUM SAXUM IMMANE MITTAM.

    2000 Land Rover Discovery, loaded with ARB and ready for the end of the world.
    2008 Fleetwood Evolution E3, loaded and ready for the end of the world.
    1967 Heckaman Manufacturing, "Phoenix" 18FT travel trailer.. Beginning of Mobile Man-Cave process.
     
  5. AZJim1

    AZJim1 Member

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    When we went a few years ago, we stayed at Sylvan Lake campground in Custer State Park for our visit at Rushmore, and Madison Campground inside Yellowstone. We usually prefer state parks and national park / national forest campgrounds and Custer SO And Yellowstone did not disappoint! I believe that some or most of the sites in Custer SO have electric but only one campground in Yellowstone has hookups but doesn't allow pop ups, but since you will be using your travel trailer you could stay there otherwise there are lots of campgrounds in Yellowstone to choose from. We chose Madison because it was sort of centrally located for seeing the rest of the park and worked well for us.

    There are pics of our sites at the link below...
     
  6. superbee73

    superbee73 New Member

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    I will also say Rafter J Bar outside of Hill City is a great place to stay. We have been there a couple times in the last few years. We also stayed in Grizzly RV park in West Yellowstone this past summer. They have a very clean park and awesome customer service. Plus its only one mile from the west entrance.
     
  7. ghacker

    ghacker Active Member

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    I strongly 2nd Novagirl's Rafter J Bar Ranch. Nicest CG we've ever stayed at. It's centrally located to many local attractions and @15 min to Rushmore. Staff & owners go out of their way to make sure you have a pleasant stay. Your kids will love the pool, playground, hay rides, etc. As the the CG sites. they have 5 different areas as I recall. We stayed in 2 areas during our wk stay. If you use Google Earth, you can see that they have several that provide some privacy. As far as SP's Sylvan Lakes consistently gets rave reviews. It's located near Rafter J Bar.
     
  8. Jayko

    Jayko Jayco 141J aka Big Bertha

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    Might I suggest Custer State Park, Sylvan Lake Campground. It is a great campground, full of nature, not cement and swimming pools. It is centrally located from Rushmore and Crazy Horse. 10 minutes from each, it is also on the needles highway, a must drive, scenery like you have never saw before.

    Photo from Sylvan Lake
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    Photos taken on the needles highway
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    [​IMG]

    As I'm sure your aware, the photos here do not do the needles highway justice. It is such a MUST DO.
     
  9. Jayko

    Jayko Jayco 141J aka Big Bertha

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    Should you choose Sylvan Lake, I highly recommend site 30E. It seems quite secluded, surrounded by tenters, so no water pump or furnace noise. Close but not next to the restrooms and running water.
     
  10. Jayko

    Jayko Jayco 141J aka Big Bertha

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    If you like shopping, I would suggest Hill City over Custer.
    Great town, with something for everyone.
     
  11. NetDad

    NetDad New Member

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    Third! I stayed at Rafter J Bar Ranch with my two sons about 2 years ago. Biggest complaint I found online was how strict they enforced fire out and quiest hours. Well, traveling with two kids under 10 I saw that as a positive. We loved the place and how close it was to everything. We did a day trip to Badlands from there. It was first week of June when we were there. Hot tub was nice. Kids playground was nice.
     
  12. novagirl

    novagirl retired camper

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  13. Jayko

    Jayko Jayco 141J aka Big Bertha

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    Novagirl, we loved it to, spent a week in the area and could have used several mor days to explore, hike, shop
     
  14. mv520

    mv520 Member

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    On the way to/from Mt. Rushmore (if your going I-90 across SD), I'd recommend Badlands Natl Park. Its pretty unique. If nothing else and your pressed for time just get off on hwy 240 and drive through and get back on the highway 20 miles down the road. Camping wise, Cedar Pass campground near the NP visitor center is quite barren and exposed, but if its a clear night, the sky there is extremely dark for simply amazing stargazing, and unique sunrise/sets playing off the surrounding hills. If the park campground is full, just south of there outside the park is a KOA. I'm not a KOA fan in general, but scoping out that one a few years ago it seemed to be one of the nicer ones.
     
  15. novagirl

    novagirl retired camper

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    Here are some pictures of Cedar Pass Campground in the Badlands.
    We stayed there this year. It was pretty nice and the scenery was spectacular.
    The lots are pull throughs right on the side of the road.

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  16. Dread_Pirate_Bailey

    Dread_Pirate_Bailey Member

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    Hey neighbor! (I'm originally from Bedford, now n Bloomington)


    How old are your kids? Stop at the maze just outside Rapid City for some fun time, if you like labyrinths. The wooden maze is a fun way to spend a couple hours. There's a stave church just past Storybook Park in Rapid City


    I've done your planned trip several times. What route are you planning on taking? 50 west, obviously, but what are your plans after the fist few hours?


    Before you get to Rapid Vity, near Wall, you can go down into an old missile silo. There's also a tour to one from the USAF museum at Ellsworth AFB just east of RC.


    If you're into natural science and minerals, the SD school of Mines and Technoloy has a small museum with lots of mineral specimens. Normal people could spend an hour or so here. (My ex-husband, the Earth Science teacher)could have stayed there forever! LOL
     
  17. Dread_Pirate_Bailey

    Dread_Pirate_Bailey Member

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    Oh, if you're out there over the Fourth of July, the Rapid City fireworks and festival is one of the best I've been to anywhere.
     
  18. lbcarr87

    lbcarr87 New Member

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    Custer State Park was my favorite when we went to the black hills. Close to all of the sites and the wildlife loop. We made a mistake by booking a few different campgrounds when we went because we didn't know the area. It was a few nights in one spot then close up and move down the road 10 or 15 miles and reset up. If & when I get to do it all over again I will stay at Custer and just do day trips to see the sites. We skipped the badlands and I regretted it after the fact. Will likely stay there the next time we go that way.
    It's been over ten years since we went there and I'm determined to make that trip again, hopefully soon.
     

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