The 2017 Solar Eclipse is quickly approaching – on August 21st to be exact. We’ve heard many reports of campgrounds along the path of totality being booked up a year in advance!
If you can’t find a reservation – fear not – we have a list of five FREE camping spots to view the solar eclipse in its totality. We created this list with the help of Campendium, one of our favorite free camping resources. The criteria to make our list was pretty simple; the campground has to be in the path of totality, it has to have a five star review and it must be FREE!
Watch the Video:
#1 – Teton View in Moose, Wyoming
GPS: 43.7645, -110.5558
Location: Bridger Teton National Forest in Moose, Wyoming
PROS: This boondocking site has epic views of the Tetons and great access to the National Park and nearby Jackson Hole. There are many activities in the area ranging from hiking to boating.
CONS: This spot will be crowded. Locals have said that the town won’t be able to accommodate the massive traffic during the eclipse and may run out of gas and other supplies.
Campendium Reviewer Notes: “The lower view makes up a large field with a stream near by and a trail that leads into the woods. In some places, the grass is very low and in other areas it is knee high. We had a problem with field mice, but nothing a few traps didn’t solve. If you can avoid it, don’t park in the tall grass.”
#2 – Lower Burnt Ranch in Mitchell, Oregon
GPS: 44.7426, -120.3615
Location: Mitchell, Oregon on the John Day River
PROS: This is a low traffic campsite which may be a peaceful place to watch the eclipse. The site has a boat ramp and a vault toilet. A campendium review says that all size RVs could fit.
CONS: There is no cell reception at Lower Burnt Ranch and the road in might be rough.
Campendium Reviewer Notes: “The road in is down hill and dirt. The camping area is relatively flat and close to the John Day river … Any size RV could fit in this dispersed camping area – if you can brave the road in.”
#3 – Lake Creek Road in Ketchum, Idaho
GPS: 43.735, -114.3662
Location: Ketchum, Idaho near Sun Valley
PROS: The site has Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T connectivity. There are also hiking & biking trails nearby.
CONS: There is a three night stay limit at Lake Creek Road. The road in is gravel and constantly kicks up dust.
Campendium Reviewer Notes: “This was a great spot to stop and stay for 2 nights. Note: Sign posting length of stay now limits any campers to 3 nights. It was very peaceful with a little traffic down the dirt road adjacent due to it being summer and a nice weekend.”
#4 – Bayard City Park in Bayard, Nebraska
GPS: 41.7622, -103.322
Location: Downtown Bayard, Nebraska
PROS: The city park offers free water & electric hookups and there is a tennis court & pool nearby. The site is walking distance to downtown. Cell reception is good here.
CONS: There’s not much to do in Bayard and this isn’t the most scenic place to view the eclipse.
Campendium Reviewer Notes: “Basically a nice parking lot with 4 RV spaces across from a well tended community park. Signs say it is free for the first 2 nights and then $10 a night after that… they do have their own police department and we did see them drive by a few times, so they do patrol which is nice, but we never felt unsafe and everyone we met was friendly.”
#5 – Snake River in Moran, Wyoming
GPS: 44.1034, -110.6861
Location: John D. Rockefeller Jr. Memorial Parkway, Moran, Wyoming
PROS: This is scenic riverfront camping between Yellowstone & Grand Teton. The vault toilets are very clean and well maintained.
CONS: The area might be overcrowded. Large rigs can get very far down the road leading to the campsites. This site has no cell connection with any provider.
Campendium Reviewer Notes: “Absolutely no cell service available here – even with our WeBoost. We use AT&T and T-Mobile. Fellow campers using Sprint & Verizon received no service as well.”
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