Near Island Park, Idaho and West Yellowstone
It is only 114 miles from Paradise Valley (Livingston Montana) to Henry’s Lake State Park at Island Park, Idaho. We picked this park because it is only 15 minutes or so from the West Yellowstone entrance. Web reviews were good but it was hard to find many pictures to show the lay-out. We were very pleased with the park.
Off of highway 20 just past Island Park is the road leading to the state park. Go up and over a knoll, then you see the park and Henry’s Lake along with a small range of spectacular mountains to the west. Reservations are required, so we had our spot picked out already. The facilities look brand new with a really nice bath house. Our site was equipped with water and electric, including 50 amp power, however we lost one leg of our 50 amps during a wild lightning storm the 2nd night, so dropped down to 30 amps. We had parked closer to the electrical box to give our kids room to set up their tent on the asphalt pad where Lola was parked, so we elected to just keep 30 amp power and have the park staff repair the electrical equipment after we left.
The bath house has regular toilets and there are additional “pit” toilets scattered around the park. This park has the newer pit toilets that have cement floors and the staff must use something like Happy Camper enzyme treatment because as long as the previous occupant has put the lid down there is very little smell ;-).
There is lots of room between camping spots, with mowed grass and wild flowers in between. The staff is friendly and everything is well maintained.
Flying the Eyes of Lola (Our Drone)
After checking the Idaho State parks websites and a few blogs it looked like it was okay to fly the drone. I took it up to get pictures of Mt. Two Top to the east and Black Mountain and Bald Peak to the north. A few days later while I was doing some maintenance on the drone a ranger stopped by to let me know that drones could no longer be flown in Idaho state parks. He was very nice about it, and if I had wanted to get some more pictures it would have been easy to drive off the park land to fly.
If you are looking for a campground near Yellowstone that also has boating and ATV access, check out Henry’s Lake State park. We were sure glad we did!