Can You Camp in Buffalo Gap National Grassland?

Camping in Buffalo Gap National Grassland is an exciting experience that allows you to explore the beauty of the Badlands and enjoy the solitude of the prairie. Located in southwestern South Dakota, Buffalo Gap National Grassland offers over 1 million acres of public land that is open for recreational activities such as camping, hunting, hiking, and horseback riding.

Camping in Buffalo Gap National Grassland can be done either in designated campgrounds or dispersed camping along roads and trails. Campgrounds are located throughout the grassland, offering tent and RV sites with access to water and restrooms.

These campgrounds offer a variety of amenities such as picnic tables, fire pits, and grills. Dispersed camping is also allowed along roadsides, but be sure to follow all regulations regarding where you can camp. Additionally, some areas within the grassland are off limits to camping.

Wildlife Viewing

In addition to camping opportunities, Buffalo Gap National Grassland is home to a variety of wildlife species including mule deer, pronghorn antelope, coyotes, bison, elk, and wild turkeys. Birdwatchers will appreciate the vast selection of species that visit or reside in Buffalo Gap during certain times of year.

Things To Do

Hiking: With over 300 miles of trails ranging from easy day hikes to strenuous backpacking trips there are plenty of options for exploring the prairie on foot.

Horseback Riding: Horseback riding is allowed on all trails in Buffalo Gap National Grassland. If you’re looking for a more leisurely ride there are also several horseback riding stables nearby offering guided trail rides.

Fishing: The Cheyenne River runs through much of Buffalo Gap National Grassland offering anglers ample opportunities for catching catfish and smallmouth bass.

Hunting: Hunting is allowed throughout most of the grassland with some areas closed seasonally or permanently due to their sensitivity or importance as habitat for species like sage grouse and bald eagles.

With its expansive prairies and abundant wildlife viewing opportunities Buffalo Gap National Grassland offers visitors an excellent opportunity to enjoy nature while camping outdoors. Whether you’re looking for a primitive experience with dispersed camping or prefer a more developed site at one of the campgrounds there are plenty of options available for enjoying your stay in this unique part of South Dakota.

Photo of author

Samantha Mckinney