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Old 05-27-2013, 11:23 AM   #1
Name: Gail
Trailer: 1975 Trillium & 2013 Escape 17B
North Carolina
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Reservations necessary???

Hi All,
Wondering if reservations will be necessary at campgrounds across the Northwest (WY, ID, MT, OR, WA) in June and July. We've always done our cross country camping in Sept and Oct and never needed to reserve ahead. We're leaving on June 10 and the only res we have is Yellowstone for 3 nights. Thanks!
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Old 05-27-2013, 11:50 AM   #2
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Gail, I have done a number of trips through those areas in July and August and you should be ok. Good idea though for reservations at Yellowstone but I had no problems though getting into the Gros Ventre Campground in the Tetons in the middle of July without reservations though. Once the kids are out of school in late June it does gets busier during the week but I have never had a problem getting into most places. Holiday week-ends though can be a real problem without reservations as it can be in July on week-ends at most state parks on the coast.

Be warned that if in Washington or Northern Oregon during a Canadian Holiday long week-end (July 1 & Aug 1) you can have problems as well - we Canucks love to cross border camp. If you get to a state park early - ie on a thursday night or early on a Friday you stand a good chance though of getting in on one of the first come first serve sites though.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:47 PM   #3
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Name: jim
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Wyoming and Montana are very busy those months with Yellowstone and Glacier NP visitors, further west may not present problems.
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Old 05-27-2013, 03:18 PM   #4
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I spent two spring & summers in those states without reservations, and the only problem I had was getting into most of the Oregon coast state parks (it did take a couple of tries to get a space at Dead Horse Point State Park in UT). Other than that, I usually found a place even though Reserve America often showed the parks full. They don't list the first come non reservable sites. If I wanted to get into a popular campground such as the south campground at Zion, I found you need to arrive early, usually before 10:00AM.

Some of the National Parks post fill times, both current & previous years that can be helpful for planning. For example, here are the fill times for Apgar at Glacier National Park.
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Old 05-27-2013, 03:52 PM   #5
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Having owned a Rv park in the Glacier area, I will say there are weekends/weeks that you have to have reservations. You might slip in on a busy weekend, but you might not! Holiday weekends are a reservation must! If you knew how many times I had people parked wherever I could get them parked, just because they didn't have reservations and none of the campgrounds/parks within a 30 mile radius had room for them. They just wanted off the road, so I would stick them in a field just to get them off the roads. And believe me, our field wasn't our overflow. But it worked! During a busy week if you get in early to wherever your wanting to stay you have a far better chance to get a site. If you pull in after noon you might not find a site. Good Luck, enjoy!
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