Platte Creek Recreation Area South Dakota (SD) RV Rentals

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Introduction

Platte Creek Recreation Area is a dream destination for RV campers seeking a serene and adventurous getaway. Located in the picturesque valley of the North Platte River, the park offers a rich history and cultural significance that adds depth to the camping experience. Established in the early 20th century, the park was once inhabited by Native American tribes and later became a popular spot for fur trappers and pioneers.

The park’s unique feature, the Platte River, is a natural wonder that has shaped the landscape over thousands of years. The river’s braided channels create a maze of islands, sandbars, and channels that are perfect for fishing, boating, and hiking. The park’s diverse ecosystem is home to a variety of wildlife, including deer, elk, and bald eagles.

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RV Rentals in Platte Creek Recreation Area

Transportation

Getting to Platte Creek Recreation Area is straightforward with several transportation options available. The most convenient way to access the park is by private vehicle as the park has several entrances that cater to different types of vehicles. RV renters should note that there are restrictions on rig sizes with the park’s roads and campsites accommodating rigs up to 40 feet in length. Visitors can also access the park by boat with several boat ramps available along the North Platte River.

RVs are welcome at the Platte Creek Recreation Area but there are certain guidelines to follow. There are designated RV parking areas throughout the park and overnight parking is permitted only in designated campsites. It’s recommended to camp with an RV and explore the park using alternative transportation methods such as biking or hiking.

Public transportation options are available for getting around the Platte Creek Recreation Area. There are shuttle buses that run on a regular schedule as well as walking paths for those who prefer to explore on foot. These options make it easy to see all that the park has to offer without having to worry about driving or parking.

Top Campsites in Platte Creek Recreation Area

1. Elk Meadow Lodge and RV Resort

Nestled in the heart of the Rockies Elk Meadow Lodge and RV Resort is the most popular campground near Platte Creek Recreation Area. With 169 sites it offers plenty of space for RVs and trailers of all sizes. Elk Meadow is pet-friendly and offers amenities such as full hookups free Wi-Fi and laundry facilities. The resort also features a heated pool hot tub and playground. Visitors can enjoy hiking fishing and wildlife viewing in the surrounding area. Elk Meadow is open from May to October.

2. Rainbow Lakes Campground

Rainbow Lakes Campground is a scenic campground located just a short drive from Platte Creek Recreation Area. With 20 sites it offers a more intimate camping experience. The campground is pet-friendly and can accommodate RVs and trailers up to 30 feet in length. Amenities include picnic tables fire rings and vault toilets. Visitors can enjoy fishing hiking and birdwatching in the surrounding area. Rainbow Lakes Campground is open from June to September.

3. Glacier Basin Campground

Glacier Basin Campground is a popular campground located in nearby Rocky Mountain National Park. With 150 sites it offers plenty of space for RVs and trailers of all sizes. The campground is pet-friendly and offers amenities such as picnic tables fire rings and flush toilets. Visitors can enjoy hiking wildlife viewing and ranger-led programs. Glacier Basin Campground is open from late May to early October.

4. Olive Ridge Campground

Olive Ridge Campground is a smaller campground located near Platte Creek Recreation Area. With just 10 sites it offers a quiet and peaceful camping experience. The campground is pet-friendly and can accommodate RVs and trailers up to 25 feet in length. Amenities include picnic tables fire rings and vault toilets. Visitors can enjoy hiking fishing and wildlife viewing in the surrounding area. Olive Ridge Campground is open from June to September.

First-come first-served campgrounds

Pine Beach Campground

Pine Beach Campground is a first-come first-served campground located near Platte Creek Recreation Area. With 20 sites it offers a more rustic camping experience. The campground is pet-friendly and can accommodate RVs and trailers up to 30 feet in length. Amenities include picnic tables fire rings and vault toilets. Visitors can enjoy fishing hiking and wildlife viewing in the surrounding area. Pine Beach Campground is open from June to September.

Kelly Flats Campground

Kelly Flats Campground is a first-come first-served campground located along the Cache la Poudre River. With 15 sites it offers a peaceful camping experience. The campground is pet-friendly and can accommodate RVs and trailers up to 30 feet in length. Amenities include picnic tables fire rings and vault toilets. Visitors can enjoy fishing hiking and rafting in the surrounding area. Kelly Flats Campground is open from May to October.

Big South Campground

Big South Campground is a first-come first-served campground located near Platte Creek Recreation Area. With 13 sites it offers a secluded camping experience. The campground is pet-friendly and can accommodate RVs and trailers up to 25 feet in length. Amenities include picnic tables fire rings and vault toilets. Visitors can enjoy hiking fishing and wildlife viewing in the surrounding area. Big South Campground is open from June to September.

Alternative camping options

Private Campgrounds

If the campgrounds inside Platte Creek Recreation Area are full there are several private campgrounds nearby that offer RV sites. These campgrounds often have more amenities than the park’s campgrounds such as electric and water hookups showers and laundry facilities. Some popular options include River Run RV Resort Estes Park KOA and Jellystone Park of Estes.

Backcountry Camping

For a more rugged camping experience visitors can try backcountry camping in nearby Rocky Mountain National Park. Backcountry camping requires a permit and involves hiking to a designated campsite. Visitors can enjoy stunning views wildlife sightings and a true wilderness experience. Backcountry camping is only recommended for experienced campers who are prepared for the challenges of backcountry travel.

Platte Creek Recreation Area is a haven for outdoorsy RV campers who love to indulge in various recreational activities. Here are some popular activities in the area

Hiking

With over 6 miles of hiking trails Platte Creek Recreation Area offers a perfect opportunity for campers to connect with nature. The trails range from easy to moderate and offer stunning views of the surrounding landscape. The most popular trail is the Platte River Trail which follows the river and provides excellent opportunities for wildlife viewing.

Fishing

The Platte River is a popular fishing spot for RV campers. It is home to a variety of fish species including rainbow trout brown trout and walleye. The river is easily accessible from the campground and fishing licenses can be obtained from the park office.

Biking

The park offers over 4 miles of biking trails that wind through the forest and offer stunning views of the surrounding landscape. The trails are suitable for all skill levels and provide a great way to explore the park.

Boating

The Platte River is also popular for boating kayaking and canoeing. Campers can rent boats from the park office or bring their own. The river offers a peaceful and scenic experience and campers can enjoy a leisurely paddle while taking in the sights and sounds of nature.

Horseback Riding

The park has over 12 miles of horseback riding trails that offer a unique way to explore the area. Campers can bring their own horses or rent them from a nearby stable. The trails offer stunning views of the surrounding landscape and provide an excellent opportunity for horseback riders to connect with nature.

For RV campers who prefer less strenuous activities Platte Creek Recreation Area offers several alternative options. Here are some popular ones

Sightseeing

The park offers several scenic overlooks that provide stunning views of the surrounding landscape. Campers can enjoy a leisurely drive through the park and take in the sights.

Nature Watching

The park is home to a variety of wildlife including deer elk and birds. Campers can enjoy watching the animals in their natural habitat from the comfort of their RV or while taking a leisurely walk through the park.

Photography

The park offers several Instagram-worthy photo opportunity spots. Campers can capture stunning sunsets wildlife and landscape shots.

Picnicking

The park has several picnic areas that offer a perfect spot for campers to enjoy a meal in the great outdoors.

Stargazing

The park is located away from city lights making it an excellent spot for stargazing. Campers can enjoy the night sky and identify constellations.

Season-specific experiences in Platte Creek Recreation Area

As the snow melts and the weather warms up Platte Creek Recreation Area becomes a haven for RV campers looking to enjoy some springtime activities. One popular activity is hiking the Platte River Trail which offers stunning views of the Platte River and the surrounding mountains. The trailhead is located near the campground making it easily accessible for campers.

Another must-see landmark is the historic Mormon Handcart Site which commemorates the brave pioneers who traveled across the plains in the 1800s. Visitors can learn about their journey and even try their hand at pushing a replica handcart.

For those looking to get out on the water the Platte River is a great spot for fishing and rafting. The river is home to a variety of fish including trout and smallmouth bass. Rafting trips can be arranged through local outfitters.

Birdwatching is also a popular activity in the spring as many migratory birds make their way through the area. The Platte River Valley is home to a variety of species including bald eagles sandhill cranes and pelicans.

Finally no visit to Platte Creek Recreation Area would be complete without a stop at the nearby Fort Laramie National Historic Site. The fort which dates back to the 1800s offers a glimpse into the area’s rich history. Visitors can tour the fort’s buildings learn about its role in the settling of the West and even participate in living history demonstrations.

As summer arrives Platte Creek Recreation Area comes alive with even more activities for RV campers. One of the most popular is horseback riding which offers a unique way to explore the area’s beautiful landscapes. Local outfitters offer guided tours for riders of all skill levels.

Another must-do activity is visiting the nearby Scotts Bluff National Monument. The monument features stunning rock formations including the iconic Scotts Bluff which rises over 800 feet above the surrounding plain. Visitors can hike the trails take in the views and learn about the area’s history and geology.

For those looking to beat the heat the swimming beach at Lake Minatare is the perfect spot. The lake is also popular for boating water skiing and fishing.

Another great way to stay cool is to take a trip to the nearby Chimney Rock National Historic Site. The site features a stunning rock formation that rises over 300 feet above the surrounding plain. Visitors can hike the trails learn about the area’s history and even take part in ranger-led programs.

Finally no summer visit to Platte Creek Recreation Area would be complete without attending one of the many events and festivals that take place in the area. From rodeos and concerts to farmers markets and art shows there’s always something happening in the area.

Fall is a beautiful time of year at Platte Creek Recreation Area with its vibrant foliage and crisp air. Here are five recreational activities landmarks and famous spots that attract RV campers especially during this season

Hiking through the aspens

The Platte River Trailhead offers an easy hike that takes you through a stunning aspen grove. The golden leaves of these trees create a breathtaking sight and the trail is perfect for all skill levels.

Fishing at the reservoir

The Platte River Flowage is a popular spot for fishing especially during fall when the fish are active. Anglers can catch a variety of species including walleye northern pike and bass.

Exploring the historic dam

The Platte River Hydroelectric Dam is a fascinating piece of history built in the early 1900s. Visitors can take a self-guided tour and learn about its significance in the area’s development.

Wildlife watching

Platte Creek Recreation Area is home to a diverse array of wildlife including deer elk and bald eagles. Fall is an excellent time to see these animals as they prepare for the winter months.

Enjoying the fall festivals

The nearby town of Sable hosts an annual Harvest Festival which features live music food vendors and a farmer’s market. It’s a great way to experience the local culture and celebrate the season.

When the snow starts to fall Platte Creek Recreation Area transforms into a winter wonderland. Here are five recreational activities landmarks and famous spots that attract RV campers during the winter months

Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing

The Platte River Trailhead offers groomed trails for both snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. It’s a great way to explore the area’s natural beauty while getting some exercise.

Ice fishing

The Platte River Flowage is a popular spot for ice fishing with many anglers setting up their shanties on the frozen lake. It’s a unique experience that’s not to be missed.

Snowmobiling

The area boasts over 300 miles of groomed snowmobile trails making it a paradise for winter sports enthusiasts. The trails offer stunning views of the surrounding landscape.

Visiting the ice caves

During the winter the Platte River creates stunning ice formations that can be explored on foot. It’s a magical experience that’s sure to leave a lasting impression.

Enjoying the winter festivals

The nearby town of Sable hosts an annual Winter Festival which features ice sculptures snowshoe races and a chili cook-off. It’s a great way to experience the local culture and celebrate the season.