Just because it’s typically the least-visited state in the union doesn’t mean there’s nothing to see or experience in North Dakota. Indeed, the North Dakota RV parks and campgrounds include some of the best places to make camp in the entire country. Many who choose to make camp in the state have the benefit of being relatively close to attractions in neighboring states like Minnesota, South Dakota, and Montana, and many enjoy an easy weekend drives to Manitoba, Canada and having the benefit of being within several hours from major Canadian towns like Regina and Winnipeg.
At the eastern edge of the state, near the border with Minnesota, are the towns of Fargo and Grand Forks, both of which have plenty of their own RV resorts nearby. Some of the most popular RV sites are those around the perimeter of Lake Ashtabula, and near the Tomahawk National Wildlife Refuge. To the north, along Route 2 you’ll find plenty of RV parks on either side of Grand Forks Air Force Base, which are close to natural gems like Turtle River State Park and Kellys Slough National Wildlife Refuge.
Motor westward towards the middle of the state and you’ll find yourself around the Spirit Lake Reservation, Devils Lake, and Arrowwood National Wildlife Refuge. This area and the land extending a few hundred miles west beyond it is dotted with lakes and rivers teeming with wildlife, especially migrating fowl and large raptors like bald eagles. Bison and other large mammals also pass through at different times throughout the year.
It was a bison hunt that first drew President Theodore Roosevelt to the area, who, upon completion of his hunt fell so hard for the western part of North Dakota that he purchased a ranch there. Roosevelt spent a great deal of time in western North Dakota after the deaths of his wife and mother, and the land was later designated to what we now call Theodore Roosevelt National Park. This is diverse land with badland washes with sandstone formations, piney woods, and grassland prairie. It’s a hunter’s paradise, as herds of deer and flocks of migrating fowl pass through the area routinely. Wild horses, bighorn sheep, cougars, and elk also populate the area, and there are a variety of large raptors present to enchant birders.
Near the northwestern corner of North Dakota are three National Wildlife Refuges: Upper Souris, Des Lacs, and Lostwood. Further south along the Missouri River is the Fort Berthold Reservation and Lake Sakakawea, an amazing place for outdoor recreation far from the crowds. The Missouri River drifts south to North Dakota’s largest city, Bismarck, and widens south of town as it flows back into the Standing Rock Reservation and South Dakota.