Steer Creek Campground

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Bessey Ranger District - Steer Creek Campground

Tucked in the shade of ponderosa pines planted in the early 1900's, this 23-unit campground is located in the southeast corner of the Samuel R. McKelvie National Forest. A hand water pump, picnic tables, fire rings, and modern vault toilets make this an attractive base from which to explore the Sandhills.  The Blue Jay Trail, a one-mile nature loop, starts and ends at the campgound.  

For horseback riders, a corral with 8 stalls is available, with a manure bunk nearby.  We ask that horses not be in individual campsites unless being saddled. 

Samuel R. McKelvie National Forest, Niobrara River The Steer Creek valley at sunrise. A close-up of a box turtle. A mountain biker and a cow on the same trail wonder about each other.

At a Glance

Operational Hours: Open all year.
Reservations: None; the campground is first-come, first-served.
Area Amenities: Tent camping,Camping trailer,Picnic tables,Toilets,Drinking water
Fees It costs $5.00 per night to camp.  Fee envelopes and a collection box are located near the entrance.  Please pay your fees within 30 minutes of selecting your site.
Usage: Light-Medium
Busiest Season: Rifle deer season, mid-November
Closest Towns: Nenzel, about 16 miles north, has a post office.  Valentine, approximately 40 miles north and east, is a full-service community.
Water: Yes
Restroom: Yes

General Information


From Highway 20 at Nenzel, go south on State Spur 16F for 18 miles.  The campground will be to the west (right).  

From Valentine, head south on Highway 97 for 26 miles, then turn right onto the Merritt Dam Road.  Continue on the Merritt Dam Road (County Road 5) for 15 miles.  At the T, turn left onto at State Spur 16F and go 2 miles to the campround.


All sites and the vault toilets are accessible.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Camping & Cabins

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Horse Riding & Camping

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Picnic tables
Drinking water
Toilets Two modern vault toilets
Tent camping
Camping trailer
Areas & Activities


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