Skip To Main Content

RV Life Trip Wizard Banner

RV Texas Y'all Podcast Episode 025

Listen Here!

Audio: RV Texas Y'all Podcast, Ep 25
Published April 27, 2023

If you cannot see the audio player just above this sentence, click on this link to play the episode.

In This Episode

A lot of RVers (ourselves included) are attracted to RVing, at least in part, because they want to visit the US National Parks. Over the past several years, we've visited several major National Parks as well as US National Monuments, National Wildlife Refuges, National Seashores, National Recreation Areas and National Historic Sites. Sometimes we've camped inside the national park and other times we've stayed at an RV park or campground outside of the national park.

In this episode, we discuss what you should consider before showing up to RV camp in a US National Park, the benefits of camping inside the park and the benefits of staying outside of the park (yes, there are pluses and minuses to each). We also share some tips and resources that we use to help us make the decision on whether or not to RV camp inside a national park and how we choose a campsite that will fit our Class A motorhome and our needs.

If you'd like to watch some of our National Park experiences (including our campsites), check out our National Parks Video Playlist! (We've embedded 3 of these videos below... we camped inside Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area and Dinosaur National Monument and outside of Rocky Mountain National Park.)

Mentioned In This Episode

National Parks Passport

US National Park Service

National Park Annual and Lifetime Passes

National Park Service Campground Finder

Resources We Use For Choosing a National Park Campsite - This is the booking website for federal lands. Many parks provide detailed site information and photos.

CampsitePhotos - Provides a picture of many of the campsites located within US National Parks, State Parks and other campgrounds organized by campground and campsite number.

RV Life Trip Wizard - One of our trip planning tools. We use it to find campgrounds and read campground reviews.

Google Earth - A great tool for getting a satellite view of what to expect from the campground, the road to it and tree cover for the individual campsites.

More Tips for RV Camping in the US National Parks

Here are a few tips we forgot to mention in this episode...

We talked briefly about size, but size really is an important consideration when you're talking about taking your RV into a National Park. Sometimes, the campsite might be long enough, but there might be trees, boulders, or other obstacles that might make getting to the site or parking a challenge. We saw 2 fifth wheels struggle inside Bridge Bay Campground and Grant Village Campground inside Yellowstone National Park. Both came away with damage to their RVs.

Our campsite inside Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area was plenty big enough for us and no obstructions. But to get to it, we had to drive through a very tight roundabout that was almost impossible for us to get through.

Our experience inside our major National Parks and National Monuments has been that the roads inside the park have been well maintained. However, that's not always the case for the campgrounds within some of the National Recreation Areas, National Forests or National Wildlife Refuges. Some are great, others need a lot of work. And this is one issue that is tough to know about before you arrive. Be prepared to arrive during the daylight hours and take your time. And remember, many campgrounds are located many miles within the parks... try not to cut it close on nightfall.

We talked about most National Park campground camping being dry camping. Some also have restrictions on generators and generator hours. Again, do your research well before your trip to know what to expect.

If you travel with pets: most national parks will allow pets in the campground and in places where cars can go (like parking lots). Pets are not typically allowed on national park trails and must be on a leash at all times.

And finally, pay attention to the weather! We've changed our plans several times due to weather forecasts, especially when extreme heat or heavy rains are predicted. Not only will inclement weather impact your plans, but it can also be dangerous. Again, it's all about being prepared. While camping in a national park campground without cell service, you can usually find current weather forecasts at campground check-in areas and visitor centers.

Watch Some of Our National Park Videos

Video: Rocky Mountain National Park

Video: Dinosaur National Monument

Video: Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area

Rent an RV

Subscribe to the RV Texas Y'all Podcast!

Like what you hear? Subscribe to us on your favorite podcast network including:

RVTY Podcast

- Amazon Music

- Apple Podcasts

- Audible

- Deezer

- Google Podcasts

- iHeartRadio

- Pandora

- Podcast Addict

- PodChaser

- Spotify

- Stitcher

- TuneIn

If you enjoy our podcast, please leave us a review in your favorite podcast app and share our episodes with your friends and family!

Of course, you can always listen to any of our episodes right here on our website!

Subscribe to our Newsletter for weekly updates on new content and other interesting stuff!

Listen To More Podcast Episodes!