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Old 06-25-2016, 04:46 PM   #1
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We're planning a western trip starting mid July and want to visit Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana and points west. I'm wondering how crowded the campgrounds are and if reservations need to be made to find accommodations. I normally don't like to make reservations in advance due to taking a lot of flexibility out of our travels.
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Old 06-25-2016, 05:11 PM   #2
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We're with you in not liking reservations. If you're doing quick overnights along the highways, you'll get a site.

For longer term such as in national parks, look at the official national park websites for their campground information. You'll find that some campgrounds within the parks don't even accept reservations. Those are the ones we aim for and have succeeded in getting a site even with our 40' motorhome. For instance, Apgar in Glacier, Mammoth in Yellowstone, Colter Bay and Gros Ventre campgrounds in Grand Teton Nat'l Park are ones we've stayed. You do have to stay nearby the previous night and move into those campgrounds early morning.

https://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/campgrounds.htm

Other times we've gotten cancellation sites in the major parks...again by being there early morning.

Also, don't try for the center of the park. Lewis Lake in Yellowstone usually has openings later in the day

There are also plenty of national forest campground which are beautiful. Baker's Hole a mile north of West Yellowstone is one we've stayed multiple times. No reservations accepted so get there in the morning.

If you're not fussy as to where you stay your plan is doable. Have a great trip.
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Old 06-25-2016, 11:15 PM   #3
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Plan on stopping by 3PM. We do that and seldom make advance reservations. Now popular destinations are different when kids are not back to school yet. Fishing Bridge CG in Yellowstone is most always full when kids are not in school, but if you can dry camp, you can find a parking spot if you search before noon.
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Old 06-26-2016, 01:53 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by fonz46 View Post
We're planning a western trip starting mid July and want to visit Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana and points west. I'm wondering how crowded the campgrounds are and if reservations need to be made to find accommodations. I normally don't like to make reservations in advance due to taking a lot of flexibility out of our travels.
You know what Yogi said "Nobody goes there anymore it's too Crowded!"

And that's a fact, you will need to plan a little - start calling early and not be afraid to stay where there are no Hook Ups. Maybe even look at a reservation/cancellation list if possible. Many State and Local Parks will have openings during the week, so you should be able to get in there - but the weekend is what I'll call Moving Day, Not sure what your setup is but we were always able to go up to a week on our own - during the summer it is critical to put yourself in a cool location on the weekends so you are not running the generator for the entire night. Another Great resource just answered your Post, twogypsies, has been to just about everywhere you are looking and with a little more info/PM will likely give you insight that will make your quest possible.

Don't be afraid to ASK for a site without hookups or and overflow site to get you in then you can take something if it opens up.

I'm in the group who never make reservations, but....... I tend to travel in the Off Season.

BOL,
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