Camping at Buffalo Lake National Wildlife Refuge

Buffalo Lake NWR

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Where to Find Camping at Buffalo Lake NWR


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Camping at Buffalo Lake National Wildlife Refuge is allowed at the refuge’s only campground. It’s not free, however, but it’s still cheap at just $2.00 per day, and will accommodate all sized rigs from the largest RVs down to motorcycle campers.

Camping at Buffalo Lake National Wildlife Refuge

While it’s not free, it may as well be. Camping at Buffalo Lake National Wildlife Refuge costs only $2.00 per day, with a decent seven (7) day maximum stay. The good news is that Buffalo Lake is never crowded and is one of the least visited campgrounds within the NWR system.

  • Campgrounds are primitive with no hookups. Each campsite as a picnic table and that’s it. There is a trash dumpster on location.
  • A total of seventeen (17) campsites large enough to accommodate any size of RV.
  • Access road into the refuge and campground is hardpacked gravel, suitable for any vehicle.
  • The refuge closes its gates at 6:00pm and does not reopen until 8:00am. Campers must return to their sites before gates close.

Permits and Reservations

No permits or licenses required.

However, if you hold a Golden Age Passport, Golden Access Passport, Golden Eagle Passport, or Federal Duck Stamp, the campground fees are waived.

Reservations are not accepted, camping is all first-come, first-served. There is a self-serve pay station.

Boondocking at Buffalo Lake NWR

There is no boondocking or dispersed camping anywhere at Buffalo Lake NWR. All camping of any kind is restricted to the single campground.

Maximum Camping Stay

Campers may stay no more than seven (7) days at the campground. There is no posted rule on how long you have to stay away from camping after the seven days have been reached.


Campfires are allowed in campgrounds at Buffalo Lake NWR, however you have to provide your own fire container. Ground fires are not allowed.

Quiet Hours and Firearms

Buffalo Lake NWR does not specific quiet hours. Firearms are allowed into the campground, shooting is not allowed inside the campground.


Sources of the above information comes from Buffalo Lake NWR’s official website.

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