Alaska and Canada have both government campsites and private campgrounds. Provincial and territorial government campgrounds and private campgrounds are readily available along the Alaska Highway and connecting routes in British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon Territory and Northwest Territories. State, federal and private campgrounds are available along the highway system within Alaska. Campers are urged to use established campgrounds. Overnighting in rest areas and turnouts may be unsafe and is illegal unless otherwise posted.
Keep in mind that season dates for most campgrounds in the North depend on weather. Campgrounds are generally open from mid- to late May until early September. The farther north the campground, the shorter the season.
Most roadside campgrounds accommodate both tents and RVs. Private campgrounds generally offer RV hookups, flush toilets, hot showers and other amenities not found in the government campgrounds. Since private campgrounds in the North often must produce their own power, park generators may be shut down at night.
Government campgrounds generally include basic services—water, tables, firepits, outhouses. Some government campgrounds may have flush toilets, dump stations and cut firewood available, although most do not offer RV hookups and some may not be able to accommodate large RVs and 5th-wheelers. Public campgrounds may or may not have a resident campground host. Camping fees and length-of-stay limits usually apply. For more details, check with the government agencies listed below.
Abbreviated highway logs on this website include locations of public and private campgrounds. The current print and digital editions of The MILEPOST® have more detailed information about all private and public campgrounds in northwestern Canada and Alaska at their roadside locations.
Government agencies offering recreational campsites in Alaska are the Alaska Dept. of Natural Resources/Division of Alaska State Parks; the Bureau of Land Management; the National Park Service; the U.S. Forest Service; and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Links to these agencies are found at Alaska Public Lands Information Centers.
Alaska State Parks:
The largest state park system in the United States, with 40 state recreation sites, 5 state parks, 14 state recreation areas and a state historic park. Alaska State Parks also offers 60 cabins for rent by the public. These cabins are in 18 state park units, as far north as Fairbanks, in Interior Alaska, and as far south as Ketchikan, in Southeast Alaska.
Alaska’s 5 state parks are Chugach, Denali, Chilkat, Kachemak Bay and Wood-Tickchik. Of these 5, all but Wood-Tikchik and Kachemak Bay are accessible via the road system. Chugach State Park, the third largest state park in the United States, covers a half-million acres and has 3 campgrounds.
Go to the following link for a list of individual state parks and their facilities and fees.
Bureau of Land Management:
The BLM maintains 14 campgrounds on the road system in Alaska: 2 on the Richardson Highway; 2 on the Denali Highway; 3 on the Steese Highway; 4 on the Dalton Highway; and 3 on the Taylor Highway. Campsites are available first-come, first-served. For fees, number of sites and amenities, follow links at the BLM website.
The National Park Service:
The Nation Park Service maintains 6 campgrounds in Denali National Park and Preserve, hike-in campgrounds at Glacier Bay and Katmai national parks and preserves, and wilderness camping in other national parks and preserves in Alaska.
Advance reservations are highly recommended for Denali National Park’s 6 campgrounds, 3 of which are accessible by vehicle, and 3 accessible via the Park’s Camper Bus. For details on the campgrounds, go to the Campgrounds page (under Plan Your Visit/Things To Do/Places to Go). Also visit the Fees and Reservations page for pertinent information.
U.S. Forest Service:
U.S. Forest Service campgrounds are available in Alaska’s 2 national forests, Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska and Chugach National Forest in Southcentral Alaska. There is a fee charged and a 14-day limit applies at most U.S. Forest Service campgrounds. Some campsites may be reserved. For information on camping, public-use cabins and other recreation in Alaska’s national forests, visit the Camping & Cabins page for Chugach National Forest or the Recreational Activities page for Tongass National Forest.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service:
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service manages 16 national wildlife refuges in Alaska, totaling 76,774,229 acres. These refuges are part of a National Wildlife Refuge System dedicated specifically to wildlife conservation. The USF&WS manages campgrounds along Skilak Road, Swanson River/Swan Lake Roads and the Sterling Highway within Kenai National Wildlife Refuge on the Kenai Peninsula. Campsites cannot be reserved in advance: First come, first served.
Details on provincial and territorial campgrounds in British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon Territory and Northwest Territories are listed below. Camping is also available in Canada’s national parks. A park sticker, available at entrance stations, is required for motorists staying overnight in the national parks. National Park campgrounds may have electrical service (standard 60 cycle). Firewood is supplied for free, but bring your own ax to split kindling. “Serviced” campgrounds have caretakers. Tools and services for finding campgrounds and making reservations at Canada’s national parks are available online.
Yukon Territory has more than 50 government campgrounds located along its road system. These well-maintained campgrounds have picnic tables, firepits, firewood, outhouses, well water and a picnic shelter. There is a 14-day limit. A camping permit is required for nonresidents to camp in Yukon government campgrounds. There are no dump stations in Yukon Government campgrounds, but there are links on Environment Yukon's website that take you to a list of RV Dump Stations as well as to details on Yukon campgrounds, camping permits and a campground map.
British Columbia has an extensive provincial park system, with camping available at most parks. Park gates are generally open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Camping fees apply, there is a 14-day limit and some sites may be reserved. Visit the BC Parks website for details on individual parks, how to make reservations and other popular topics. British Columbia’s national parks include Kootenay, Mount Revelstoke and Yoho.
Alberta also has a provincial park system with 108 provincial parks and recreation area campgrounds and 79 forest provincial recreation areas. Campgrounds and picnic areas in provincial parks and recreation areas are normally equipped with picnic tables, fire rings, drinking water, toilet facilities and garbage containers. Many group campgrounds and day-use areas are also equipped with picnic or cook shelters. Additional amenities, such as electrical hook-ups, boat launches and showers may also be available. This information is provided in the individual park and recreation area listings on their website.
Alberta’s national parks include the popular Banff and Jasper national parks in the Canadian Rockies.
The Government of Northwest Territories’ Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment operates 34 parks divided into 4 different categories: Heritage Parks, Natural Environment Parks, Recreational Parks and Wayside Parks. Click here for a list of NWT parks and services.
Most NWT parks are open from May 15 to September 15, with advance reservations and current prices available online at Camping NWT. Day-use areas and kitchen shelters may also be reserved.
There are also 4 national parks in NWT operated by the federal government: Tutkut Nogait, Aulavik, Nahanni and Wood Buffalo. The only national park with highway access is Wood Buffalo.