In our RV travels so far, we’ve found dispersed camping in some fairly spectacular locations across the United States. These include fabulous options for dispersed camping by national parks.

Dispersed camping (aka boondocking) refers to camping in an RV without any hookups, usually in a remote location in a forest or other scenic area.

It is almost always free as you are camping on open, public land.

Finding areas for dispersed camping can be easy in National Forests or on Bureau of Land Management land, but can be a little more complicated to locate around national parks due to their popularity.

See below for highlights of three of our favorite dispersed camping locations near the Badlands National Park, Grand Teton National Park, and Yellowstone National Park.

We found these locations using the approach outlined in our step-by-step tutorial on finding dispersed camping locations in US National Forest locations using free mapping tools. We think you’ll find it useful for finding dispersed campsites like these.

The Wall Overlooking Badlands National Park in South Dakota

This location is going to be hard to beat when it comes to a spectacular dispersed camping location with a view.

We spent a spectacular few days high up on a cliff overlooking the Badlands National Park in South Dakota.

The area is popular with RVs of all sizes, as it’s easy to get to off a main road. That’s our Airstream propped up all alone overlooking the national park.

badlands boondocking area campsite cliff
Our Airstream camping location atop a cliff overlooking Badlands National Park

More details about the Badlands boondocking area.

Spread Creek Meadow with a View of the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming

A second wonderful location where we boondocked was at a site in the Bridger-Teton National Forest with a perfect view of the Grand Tetons in Wyoming.

We were just across the street from the Grand Teton National Park but basically had the whole place to ourselves.

We woke up to a deer family munching the grass next to our Airstream and took in the gorgeous views each evening as we watched the sun set over the Grand Tetons.

Grand Tetons dispersed camping in an airstream
Grand Tetons dispersed camping spot in the Spread Creek meadow

More details about the Spread Creek Meadow dispersed camping area near the Grand Teton National Park.

Carbella Recreation Site in Montana Just North of Yellowstone National Park

Finding available campsites in Yellowstone National Park can be difficult during the summer months as the park is extremely popular with RV’ers.

One alternative to staying at a private RV park outside Yellowstone National Park is to boondock. 

There’s a great dispersed camping location located about 17 miles of Yellowstone National Park in Montana at the Carbella Recreation Site.

RVs and tents can camp right along the Yellowstone River.

Our Airstream camping along the Yellowstone River at carbella boondocking site
Our Airstream camping along the Yellowstone River in Montana

More details about dispersed camping at the Carbella Recreation Site.


Dispersed camping provides a great alternative to camping in an RV park or established campground.

If you do it right, it’s easy to live without electrical, water, and sewer hookups for at least a few days in most RVs.

We’ve comfortably boondocked for nearly a week at a time in our Airstream with its relatively small fresh water and holding tanks.