Big Springs Campground
The Big Springs Campground is located 22 miles south of West Yellowstone, Montana in beautiful Island Park, Idaho at an approximate elevation of 6,300 feet. Visitors love Island Park for its world-class fishing and outstanding scenery and wildlife viewing opportunities.
Natural Features: Island Park is composed of two areas of extinct volcanic activity. The Henry's Fork Caldera sits inside the larger Island Park Caldera.
The area is known for its dense forests of lodgepole pine, broad grassy meadows bursting with summer wildflowers and a wide variety of wildlife, including black and grizzly bears, moose, elk, deer, bald eagles, Sandhill cranes and much, much more.
The campground is situated in a clearing surrounded by a forest of lodgepole pines. Grasses and summer wildflowers dot the landscape.
Recreation: Big Springs is the headwaters of Henry's Fork and is one of the largest springs in the country. Henry's Fork is considered one of the best fly-fishing streams in the nation. Fishermen cast for rainbow and brook trout. Tubing, canoeing, kayaking and rafting are also popular on the river.
The Big Springs National Recreation Water Trail can be accessed from the Big Springs Boat Launch and ends 4.5 miles away at Macks Inn. It offers a lazy three-hour float or canoe trip through beautiful scenery. Wildlife, including moose, bald eagles and Sandhill cranes, are often seen along the trail.
The charming and historic John Sack Cabin is nearby, noted for its unique location, construction and furnishings.
Hiking, biking, horseback riding and ATVing are popular activities. Many miles of trails crisscross Island Park, including the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail and the Nez Perce Trail are in the area.
Facilities: The campground provides one accessible group site that can accommodate up to 40 people, with picnic tables, a campfire circle, grill and tent pads. Accessible vault toilets, drinking water and trash collection are provided. 30-amp electricity is available for a fee. Firewood is available for purchase from the host. Roads and parking spurs are gravel.
Nearby Attractions: Macks Inn is 4.5 miles west. This full-service facility offers boat rentals, rafting, shuttle service, gas, groceries, showers and laundry facilities.
Island Park Reservoir and Henry's Lake are nearby, both offering boating, water skiing, fishing, kayaking and canoeing. Numerous additional small lakes and streams are scattered throughout Island Park.
Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks are within a short drive, offering hiking and fishing, as well as outstanding scenery.
At a Glance
|Current Conditions:||Campground is open.|
|Reservations:||The 14 single campsites are on a first come first serve basis. The campground is run by a concessionaire. There is a small group site (40 person) that can be reserved by dialing 1-877-444-6777 or on the website - https://www.recreation.gov/camping/campgrounds/234576|
|Area Amenities:||Interpretive Site, Accessible, Boat ramp, Tent camping, Camping trailer, Picnic tables, Toilets, Drinking water, Parking|
|Fees:||Please go to www.recreation.gov for the latest site fees.|
|Permit Info:||Firewood Permits: Firewood permits are available to purchase from the Westside Ranger District June 1 through November 30 and allow the collection of wood that is standing dead or dead/down on the ground. Purchase is a minimum of 4 cords of wood for $25.00 with a maximum of 8 cords per household. You must have a map and brochure of the Ranger Districts you will be cutting in and the Caribou-Targhee Terms and Conditions.|
|Open Season:||May 26 - Sept. 9|
|Passes:||Federal Passes: *America the Beautiful Pass (Annual, Senior, Access, and Military Passes) will waive fee to picnic areas and trailheads. Senior passes waive camping fees by 50% at campgrounds in the forest. Federal Recreation Passes can be purchased at any ranger district office or at Recreational Passes | USGS Store.|
|Operated By:||Aud and Di Campground Services|
|Information Center:||No ATVs/OHVS allowed in the campground
Pack in Pack Out all trash
From West Yellowstone, Montana, travel 22 miles south on Highway 20 to Mack's Inn. Turn east on the Big Springs Loop Rd. Travel 4.5 miles to campground.
Big Springs Campground is 4 1/2 miles from Macks Inn, ID which is part of Island Park. The nearest bigger town is West Yellowstone, MT 22 miles north of Macks Inn. Ashton, ID is 30 miles to the south. Ashton has several gas stations, motels, restaurants and a grocery store. Rexburg, ID is 50 miles to the south (this is home of the BYU-I campus) and Idaho Falls, ID is 90 miles to the south.
Big Springs is near several large springs that form the Henry's Fork of the Snake River. There is a universally accessible interpretive trail that follows along the river. The nearby historical Johnny Sack Cabin is open to the public from July 4th through Labor Day. There is no fishing from Big Springs to Henry's Lake Outlet (2 miles downstream). You can normally see big trout in the water from the bridge. A mile west from Big Springs Campground is the boat launch for the Big Springs Water Trail. This is an easy 2-4 hour non-motorized flat water float. The takeout is on the north side of the river 1/2 mile above Macks Inn. Mosquitoes can be a bit overwhelming the first couple of weeks in June.
Map showing recreational areas. Map Information
Hiking, ATV trails, Johnny Sack Cabin Historical Site, float the Big Springs Water Trail.
|No. of Sites||14 Single Sites and 1 Group Site|
|Reservation Info||Group Site reservation information. https://www.recreation.gov/camping/campgrounds/234576|
The group site can hold 40 people.
|Interpretive Site:||Johnny Sack Cabin|
|Boat ramp:||One mile west - non motorized|