There's no reason to rush your visit to Bryce Canyon National Park – why not stay a few days, relax and take the time to really explore? And since you're here already, you might as well make the most of it and spend a few nights camping. Whether you prefer car camping or roughing it at a primitive backcountry site, Bryce Canyon has plenty of beautiful, shaded campsites right next to excellent hiking trails.
While days can be hot, nights can get downright chilly, especially in early spring, late fall and during the winter, so bring plenty of warm layers.
There are two main front country, car accessible campsites in Bryce Canyon National Park, the North Campground and the Sunset Campground. Both campsites are set among Ponderosa Pines, providing plenty of shade and shelter to campers. Both campgrounds have plumbed toilets and potable water.
RV camping is available at both campsites; however, there are no hook-ups. There are dump stations (with a $2 use fee) at each campground, although they are closed during the winter.
The nearby General Store (just across the street from the North Campground and mile-and-a-half from the Sunset Campground) has showers, laundry and groceries.
Commercial campgrounds are also located outside the park boundaries.
- North Campground
Location – The North Campground is located right next to the Bryce Canyon Visitor Center and the Park Entrance.
Number of sites – 103, reservations available for up to 32 sites
Closest to – General Store, Visitor Center, Rim Trail
- Sunset Campground
The Sunset Campground is closed during winter.
Location – The Sunset Campground is located across the road from Sunset Point, 1.5 miles from the Visitor Center.
Number of sites – 96, no reservations, two wheelchair accessible campsites
Closest to – Sunset Point, Queens Garden/Navajo Trail Loop, Rim Trail
If your idea of a good time involves getting away from the car and carrying everything you need on your back, Bryce Canyon National Park has some beautiful primitive sites located along the Under-the-Rim Trail (eight campsites) and Riggs Spring Loop Trail (four campsites), and spending a few days hiking through the canyon backcountry is definitely one of the best ways to experience Bryce Canyon.
Be sure to bring plenty of water with you, as well as a purification system or enough fuel to boil your water. Right Fork Yellow Creek, Yellow Creek Group campsite, Yellow Creek, Sheep Creek, Iron Springs, Riggs Springs and Yovimpa Pass Campsites have reliable water sources, but it must be treated.
Permits are available at the Visitors Center for all backcountry campsites 48 hours in advance.
Riggs Spring Campsite
Located in the quieter, south side of Bryce Canyon National Park, the 8.8-mile Riggs Spring Loop begins at Rainbow Point and descends 2248 feet through forests of Bristlecone Pines, spruce and aspen to Riggs Spring, with plenty of scenic views along the way, before climbing back up to Rainbow Point via Yovimpa Point. While winding your way up and down the canyons, you'll be treated to views of Molly's Nipple, The Promontory and No Man's Mesa. There are four campsites, one of which is a group site, along the trail, but do your best to get a spot at the Riggs Spring Campsite. This open clearing among the Ponderosa Pines and aspen trees is close to the halfway point of the loop (3.3 miles from Rainbow Point and 1.6 miles from Yovimpa Pass) and has reliable water(be sure to treat it!).
Yovimpa Pass Campsite
If you're looking for a backcountry campsite that's not too far from the car and doesn't require a committing hike, the Yovimpa Pass Campsite is just what you're looking for. Located along the Riggs Spring Loop just 1.6 miles from Rainbow Point, this kid-friendly site sits in an open meadow among aspens, Ponderosa Pines and Blue Spruce and has a reliable water source, although it must be treated before drinking or cooking with. Nearby vistas provide idyllic spots to look over the Colorado cliffs of Bryce Canyon National Park and the Grand Staircase.
Since this campsite is relatively high and exposed, expect nighttime temperatures to be colder.
Under-the-Rim Trail and Campsites
This 22.9-mile trail winds its way from the north end of the park to the south, hugging the rim of the major amphitheaters and canyons along the way. While doing the entire trail in one day is possible, most sane hikers take two or three days to enjoy the scenery and amazing rock formations. This trail and the following campsites are easily accessible from a number of different points along the main park road, so it's no problem to plan a trip that fits your schedule.
- Yellow Creek Campsite
The Yellow Creek Campsite is 5.5 miles from Bryce Point Parking Lot and five miles from the intersection with the Swamp Canyon Connecting Trail. This peaceful campsite is shaded by tall Ponderosa Pines that permit views of the Yellow Cliffs and the Claron Formation. Next to the camp, Yellow Creek is a reliable water source (treat it!).
- Iron Spring Campsite
The Iron Spring Campsite is just under four miles from Rainbow Point and about three miles from the Agua Canyon Connecting Trail. More removed from the main trails, you'll be less likely to have early morning or early evening hikers walk past your camp. This campsite, like most of the backcountry camping, is also shaded by tall pines, firs and spruce, as well as some aspens. The water at nearby Iron Spring looks questionable and may have a mineral taste but is potable if you treat it.
More information on RV Camping outside of Bryce Canyon National Park.