Camping at the End of the Road: The Loner’s Guide to the Best Campsites


Johnny Gulch, Montana

Some of our best friends are people.   We like them.   And sometimes we even like to go camping with them.

But more often than not, we* prefer to camp alone, and we’re perfectly happy if we don’t see another soul the whole time we’re out there.

* “we” = my husband and I.  Apparently we don’t really consider each other “people”.

It’s pretty easy to be alone when we’re backpacking.  But what about car camping?  What makes a campsite that you drive to the perfect site for the anti-social camper?

1.  The first requirement is obvious:  solitude.  If you want to get away from it all, it’s important to get away from them all.    This is where the campsite at the end of the road comes in pretty handy.


Missouri Breaks, Montana

Sometimes all you need is a barely used road; no need to go all the way to the end.


Canyon Pintado, Colorado


Gravelly Mountains near Black Butte, Montana


Gravelly Mountains, Montana

When you’re having your morning coffee it’s important to feel like you’re the boss of all you see.  You’re not, of course, but your solitary campsite lets you live the dream.


2.  Since you’re all alone out there, grand vistas are the second requirement.


Near Granite Butte, Montana


Granite Butte

Even if the best spot to stop is at the bottom of a swale, make sure that it will only take a short climb to give you the required grand vista.


North of Red Rock Lakes, Montana

3.   Rainbows over your chosen campsite are not a requirement, but they are a definite plus.  Double rainbows give you double points, of course.


Gravelly Mountains


Medicine Rock Creek, Montana

4.  Likewise, a full moon rising over your campsite is not required.  But extra points, for sure.


Missouri Breaks, Montana


Butler Wash, Utah


Near Canyonlands, Utah

5.  Once that moon is up, a nice fire can be a big plus, especially in the winter.



6.  And a little whiskey by the fire  (again, not required!) is pretty nice in my book.


7.  Finally, a critter at the campsite will give you lots of bonus points.    The requirement is actually the possibility of a critter showing up for a visit, but the actual visit of something bigger than a rabbit is a huge plus.  If a grizzly or a wolf shows up, the bonus points go through the roof.

Missouri River, Montana

Missouri River, Montana


About westerner54

Hello. I'm Cindy, and I love to hike, bike and explore the outdoors - particularly the western U.S.
This entry was posted in Adventure, Camping, Montana, Nature, Travel, Yellowstone and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

25 Responses to Camping at the End of the Road: The Loner’s Guide to the Best Campsites

  1. swridgerunner says:

    Great post! Thanks.

  2. avian101 says:

    Terrific life that you live Cindy! 🙂

  3. brickthomas says:

    Great post. I love the photos and concept.

  4. It looks like you’ve enjoyed some wonderful loners moments over the year!

  5. Jeff Katzer says:

    Marvelous work, if you can get it. Beautiful.

  6. You have camped in some mighty gorgeous spots. I’m not a camper. But I never can understand why folks camp in campgrounds where they are right on top of one another. Your style of camping looks appealing.

    • westerner54 says:

      I sure do prefer this type of “on your own” camping. But I’ve got to admit that sometimes a bathroom (or at least an outhouse) and a water spigot are pretty appealing, too!

  7. Lyle Krahn says:

    It looks like you’ve got that part nailed down. I guess thats why good things like bears follow you around.

  8. mullinshinch says:

    I’m thinking of all the nice walks you must take at the end of the road

    • westerner54 says:

      There are lots of nice walks…nicer when it’s not cold and snowy, don’t you think? Next summer you guys should come to the end of the road with us sometime! You guys would count in the “not people” group!

  9. Shadysace says:

    Post like these are the best! Thanks for sharing them 😊

  10. jrobtport says:


    Look at that amazing and really beautiful stuff, it’s just what you need, take a look

    My best to you, jrobtport

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