Camping Death Valley: Your Hottest Desert Camping Guide

Camping death valley: Find your best site in our Guide

Death Valley is a mesmerizing camping spot; don’t let the grim name fool you. Now, while you’re camping during the peak season or heading to a high-altitude campsite, you need to consider that you’ll be in the hottest desert in the United States. Camping Death Valley can be the most unusual adventure of your life.

camping death valley

Can you camp anywhere in Death Valley?

In the valley of death, you can safely camp in a tent. There are many campsites in Death Valley National Park that provide tents for free. Most of the park’s 700-mile dirt roads allow backcountry camping and camping dispersal.

You should be aware that scorpions, snakes, rodents and insects live here. Therefore, you need to take precautions and not allow such creatures to come to you.

Attach food to a vehicle or hang above the ground. To limit access to wildlife, close all tents and motorhomes.

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The network of remote campsites in Death Valley can be physically challenging, but planning ahead reduces any dangers. Water supplies that you need to take with you on a trip should be enough for several days. In such conditions, it is necessary to drink more water than usual, so consider this issue in advance.

Is there free camping in Death Valley?

The unique natural complex, which is located on the territory of Death Valley National Park, is a unique park to explore – the largest in the continental United States. Some sections of the road are dirt and are a paradise for off-road enthusiasts as well as land drilling rigs.

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For those who love outdoor activities, there is an opportunity to visit a free campsite in Death Valley National Park. If you do not have a drilling rig, then you can do it in a tent. Death Valley is open to dispersed campsites; you can download a map directly from the Death Valley National Park Service.

If you are going to visit new places, then be sure to set up camp in pre-disturbed territories. Be careful with fragile desert plants as well as the environment. Do not approach the water source within 100 yards. And one more important point – the installation of the camp with the help of a drilling rig leaves no traces.

There are several roads where travelers can camp for free:

  • Hippodrome
    At this point, the high ground clearance road is suitable for 4×4 trucks. It will lead you to a dry lakebed known for its mysterious moving rocks. Camping is prohibited at the very bottom of the lake, but camping can be arranged, which will be located away from the shore.
  • Saline Valley Road
    This road leads to hot springs in the middle of the desert. For bathing in the baths, there is a primitive campsite where vacationers can enjoy an unusual spa.
  • Upper Wildrose Road
    If you want to see mountains and desert, then this road is for you. This high mountain road takes you to historic coal-fired ovens, pine forests and trails.
  • Pleasant Canyon Road
    At this location, you can find mountains, mining stories, and breathtaking views down into the Butte Valley.
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The campsites dotted around Death Valley National Park offer plenty of places to get away from people and have fun. Just make sure you have the right equipment, off-road tires and the ability to call for help in an emergency. There are hundreds of miles of back roads that can be driven by campers like Jeeps, but there are still plenty of places in Death Valley where you can’t pitch a tent.

Fortunately, the Death Valley National Park clearly indicates where backcountry camping is not allowed: at the bottom of the valley from Ashford Mill up to two miles north of Stovepipe Wells, Eureka Dunes and Greenwater Canyon.

The first rule you need to follow is that you can live in Death Valley National Park as long as the traveler is within 1 mile of any paved or day dirt road. This rule is easy to follow – after all, there are many dirt roads in Death Valley.

Do Death Valley campgrounds fill up?

The good news is that there are many campsites in Death Valley National Park, so the campgrounds in Death Valley are rarely crowded except during the spring and fall holidays. Most campsites have large, level areas that provide the perfect shelter for RVs and trailers.

It should be noted that since this is a desert, collecting firewood is prohibited (almost impossible). Before going camping, it is recommended to buy firewood from the nearest department store. This is done to protect the fragile desert ecosystem and to ensure that wood imported from outside does not introduce pests and plant diseases into the park.

How much does it cost to camp at Death Valley?

Fiddlers Campground

Fiddlers Campground is a campsite at the Oasis Death Valley Resort. It is the best of backcountry camping options with multiple RV dump stations. It is located near the Death Valley Visitor Center at Furnace Creek.

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Most sites do not have electricity, but guests are allowed to run generators at night. His booking systems lists the full meet and greet location, but you can’t count on it as it’s a campsite clean in Death Valley National Park, where seats sell out a year in advance. Guests at Fiddlers Camping have access to resort facilities including a swimming pool and shower cubicles.

Short guide


Graveled; RV length restrictions – 50ft maximum platform with additional towing vehicle parking.


FHU or no connection (generator available overnight), communal campfire and picnic tables, resort pool, laundry room with showers, playground, access to sports field, shop and restaurant on site. Tow vehicle is available.


$30 to $35


Book online through the Oasis Resort website (available 24/7).

Furnace Creek Campground

Among the national park campgrounds in Death Valley, Furnace Creek is very popular due to its convenient location near the main attractions that park visitors want to see. Furnace Creek Campground is the only NPS campsite in Death Valley with electricity.

Only 18 sites in Furnace Creek have electricity, so early bookings are recommended during the peak hiking season. Peak camping season in Death Valley National Park is between October 15th and April 15th.

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During the high season, Furnace Creek Campground has few free electric camping sites. Reservations in Furnace Creek can be made at least six months before arrival.

Travellers should be aware that large SUVs cannot enter Furnace Creek Campground. Therefore, visitors to Death Valley on large motorhomes are better off looking for other campsites only NPS campgrounds. Many of the sections leading to Furnace Creek will not be passed by an inexperienced driver, which can lead to sad consequences. Unaccompanied travelers may also need assistance to navigate rough terrain safely.

Short guide


This Death Valley campground has 136 sites, 18 of them with electricity connections.


Picnic area, water, toilets.


$11 to $36


Book online through or call 1-877-444-6777.

Sunset Campground

Sunset Camping in Death Valley is located across the street from Furnace Creek Visitor Center. This is a large gravel pad that can accommodate several hundred motorhomes. Flush toilets and a place to wash dishes are available at the campsite.

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National Park Sunset Campsite is the best place to get cell phone data at a campsite in Death Valley. However, despite being in the middle of a state park, mobile coverage is very poor or non-existent. Wi-Fi is available at the Death Valley visitor center and nearby resorts, but is difficult for tourists to catch at sunset.

Campsites at Sunset Campground in Death Valley are gravel sites. Only cars with long rigs will not be able to accommodate Sunset Campground.

Access to installations of any size is easy. The Furnace Creek Information Center is located across the street from the campsite. In the event that vehicles do not fit on the site, a campsite parking facility may be provided.

National Park Sunset Campground is open for camping in Death Valley National Park on a first come, first served basis. This seasonal Death Valley campsite near Furnace Creek is usually open from October 15th to April 15th.

Short guide


There are 230 sites within the campsite; large gravel patches can accommodate a vehicle up to 50 feet in length.


Paved road, ADA facilities sites, no connection, the generator can be connected from 7:00 to 21:00; trash bins, places for washing dishes, flush toilets, communal fire pits.


from $7 for visitors with a lifetime pass to $14


Death Valley campground is available in spring, winter and autumn; in order of priority.

Texas Spring Campground

Texas Spring sits on a hillside overlooking Furnace Creek, above the Sunset Campground. It doesn’t look like Sunset’s gravel parking lot, as it has a much greater variety of sites.

The campsite in Death Valley is surrounded by trees, but only a few are large enough to provide shade in the hot sun. Each area has a picnic table and barbecue grill.

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Death Valley NPS is prohibited from using the Texas Spring Campground for RVs over 35 feet. The fact is that access to large vans can be a little difficult due to the angle at which the plots are located and the proximity to neighbors. Always explore new territory before blindly indulging in the placement of a large rig.

Spring Texas offers tent camp and car camp three seasons of the year on a first-come, first-served basis. Death Valley campgrounds that do not work in summer are usually open from October 15th to April 15th.

Generators are not allowed at Texas Springs Campground. However, generators are allowed at Upper Texas Springs Campground in the spring.

Short guide


There are 92 sites throughout the campsite; large gravel areas can accommodate a maximum 25′ trailer or 35′ RV. The tent can be set up in 26 sites out of 92.


No connection, you can’t connect to the generator either; flush toilets, picnic areas with fire pits at each site.


from $8 for visitors with a lifetime pass to $16.


Death Valley campground is available in spring, winter and autumn; in order of priority.

Stovepipe Wells Campground

Stovepipe Wells Campground in Death Valley is located at sea level at CA-190. Located across the street from the Stovepipe Wells resort and behind a private department store, Stovepipe Wells is about 30 minutes from Furnace Creek.

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It is close to the Mesquite Flats dune and the campsite overlooks the dunes. The Mesquite Flats Dunes are a popular destination in Death Valley.

A dishwasher and a flush toilet are available at Stovepipe Wells Camping, but no showers. Showers and pools can be visited at the resort. Asking for his location is easy at a nearby store.

Camping Stovepipe Wells in Death Valley has no restrictions on the length of campers. It’s better to explore a new campsite than to drive a big car through uncharted territory.

Short guide


There are 190 sites on the territory of the Death Valley campground, 28 of them can be accommodated with a tent.


There is no connection, it is possible to connect to the generator from 7 am to 19 pm; flush toilets, picnic areas with fire pits at some sites; dishwashers; depending on the season, access to water for draining and filling is open.


from $7 for visitors with a lifetime pass to $14.


This Death Valley camping is available in spring, winter and autumn; in order of priority.

Stovepipe Wells Village RV Park

For a more luxurious RV experience in Death Valley, the Stovepipe Wells Village Resort, a private RV park and campsite, is a great choice.

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Death Valley Stovepipe Wells RV is a small and cozy campsite with only 14 spots. All plots have everything you need to connect electricity, water and sewerage. Camping rates include access to the resort’s pool and Wi-Fi in the lobby.

Reservations for Death Valley RV Park can be made online. Campsites are selling out fast. Lots range from small (vans under 27 feet) to large (vans up to 40 feet).

Short guide


There are 14 sites within the campsite, and vans up to 40 feet can be accommodated on site.


Free access to the pool and shower, full connection to the necessary communications (electricity, water and sewerage), a restaurant and a shop are available on the campsite.




Booking in this Death Valley camping is available online.

Mesquite Spring Campground

Mesquite Spring Campground is located at 1,400 feet, next to Scotty Castle and Grapevine Canyon. This is an ideal base for visiting the northern sights of Death Valley, such as the Ubehebe Crater.

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Mesquite Spring offers year-round camping in largest national park Death Valley. Flush toilets, van containers and potable water are provided even in summer.

The campsite is 1 hour 15 minutes from Furnace Creek. First-time visitors to Death Valley may want to stay at South Campground in addition to Mesquite Spring to cut travel time to the main attractions.

Access from Nevada to Mesquite Spring Campground via Highway 267 is currently closed due to bad weather until further notice.

Short guide


There are 40 sites on the territory of the camp; Desert Mountains are located around the sites.


No connection, you can connect to the generator from 7 am to 19 pm; flush toilets, picnic tables with fire grates at each site; the motorhome dump is open all year round, drinking water can also be refilled all year round.


from $7 for visitors with a lifetime pass to $14.


This Death Valley camping is available all year round; in order of priority.

Emigrant Campground

The Death Valley Emigrant Campground is open to tent visitors only and can be found 40 minutes from Furnace Creek and near Emigrant Canyon Road. At 2,100 feet above sea level, it’s cooler here than campsites at lower elevations.

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Emigrant Campground has only 10 places and is open all year round. There is no camping fee at Death Valley Emigrant Campground.

Short guide


There are 10 sites on the territory of the camp; accommodation is possible only with tents.


Flush toilets, picnic tables with fire pits at each site.


free campground.


This Death Valley camping is available all year round; in order of priority.

Panamint Springs RV Resort Campground

The Panamint Springs RV Resort in Death Valley offers tent rentals with camp beds set up inside and campsites for tents and motorhomes. Some RV sites have everything you need (full connectivity). Electricity in campsites is provided by a diesel generator, so places with electricity and full connection are more expensive.

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The campsite is located at the western entrance to the largest national park Death Valley. The Furnace Creek Visitor Center is 1 hour away. We recommend stopping at Panamint Springs if you need to leave or enter Death Valley. The campsite is not well located for the main attractions of the park and is not competitively priced compared to other campsites in Death Valley.

When booking sites with Panamint Springs, always check the commission rate before providing payment information. Extra people and pets are charged separately, so the price shown may not cover the cost of accommodating the whole family here.

In these private campsites, there is a wide range of prices depending on the services provided, so be careful when choosing car camping spots or privately owned campgrounds.

Short guide


There are 26 sites in the camp site for accommodation in a trailer, with a tent can be accommodated in 22 sites, 8 sites with full connection; places for tents with baby cots are limited.


Flush toilets; picnic areas with fire pits at each site; picnic tables at some sites; shower cabins; depending on the season, access to water for draining and filling is open.

  • $15 for visitors with tents;
  • $30 for motorhome travelers;
  • $55 for those who wish to book a double tent with a camp bed;
  • $75 for tents for 4 people with cots;      
  • $80 for fully connected lots ($40 extra for electricity).

The supplement is made for pets and extra beds.


This Death Valley camping is available at and 775-482-7680.

What is the best time of year to visit Death Valley?

Death Valley is the hottest place on earth… True reality: From May to September, daytime highs often top 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and the evenings don’t get much cooler: in April 2020, the park recorded a staggering 130F!

For this reason, Death Valley National Park is best visited between October and April. In fact, some of the public campsites located at a lower elevation in Death Valley are only open from mid-October to mid-April. However, private campsites mostly operate throughout the year.

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However, Death Valley has a few high-altitude Death Valley campgrounds that are suitable (or rather preferred) for camping during the cooler seasons. These are Wildrose, Thorndike, Mahogany Flat and Mesquite Spring.

Death Valley National Park is the hottest and lowest elevation national park in the US, but it can still be visited in the summer! How to do it?

For example, the Badwater Basin is 300 feet below sea level, but high mountains surround it. The highest peaks that rise above Death Valley is over 11,000 feet high. Therefore, during the hot summer months, travellers can find free camping in Death Valley National Park by climbing to higher ground via a dirt road.

It’s worth noting that it’s still too wet and muddy in March to take the West Side Road up the mountain slopes on the western side of Death Valley, but it’s a route well suited for the drier months.

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Passing through the valley and climbing high mountains, one can camp next to old mines, juniper pine forests and clear springs. Many of these trails require high-clearance 4WD vehicles to get higher and keep out the heat.

In winter, spring and autumn, you can also camp in Death Valley National Park. Some of the free campsites we found are around 1,000 feet above sea level and work well during the cooler months. Regardless of the time of year, weather conditions must be taken into account when exploring Death Valley. There is a risk of flash floods, strong winds or cold. Under these conditions, you can sit at the campsite all evening, so check the weather in advance.

How cold does it get at night during Camping Death Valley?

Death Valley is known as Dark Sky Park due to its remote location. It’s a phenomenal place to watch constellations and photograph the Milky Way as its many miles away from major cities, and SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) is nearby as it’s a vast desert area with excellent views.

Death Valley National Park is also very large. In many other national parks, you can go from trail to trail in less than an hour. On the other hand, if you camp in the cooler highlands near Telescope Peak, getting to many of the local attractions can be quite difficult. For this reason, you need to plan well, including preparing a convenient route, your best playlist, and taking plenty of water with you.

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Extreme temperatures in Death Valley National Park make it difficult to stay in the area during the summer, as most Death Valley campgrounds do not offer summer accommodation.

Even at night, temperatures remain above 100 degrees F, making it unsuitable for summer camping in national park campground near Furnace Creek Area or Texas Springs in Death Valley.

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