Savage River Campground
A Window to Mount McKinley
Savage River Campground is located at mile 13 on the Park Road. It is the smallest of the three vehicle-accessible campgrounds in Denali, with 33 sites available for tent or RV campers. It is open mid-May - mid-September each year.
This campground is near the end of the paved, publicly-accessible portion of the Park Road.
You may make reservations online, through a third-party reservation system. Reservations are possible as early as December 1 of the summer before you wish to visit (e.g., Dec 1, 2015 for a 2016 visit).
What to Expect in Savage
No campground in Denali has electrical or water hookups for RVs. Savage does have potable water, but no shower or laundry facilities.
Savage River Campground sits a few hundred feet below treeline, which is fairly low in Denali - about 3,000' above sea level for many areas. Sites are screened with brush in most cases.
An old gravel road leads through the campground towards Savage River itself, where the trees are less dense and beautiful, open views can be had. On clear days, Mt. McKinley is visible from this area, a short walk from all the sites in Savage. Only two campgrounds in Denali boast such a view - Savage River and Wonder Lake.
The nearby Mountain Vista Rest Area and Savage Rest Area offer opportunities for hiking, scenic views, picnicing and more.
Small animals, such as red squirrels and snowshoe hare, are commonly seen in Savage. On occasion, a variety of birds will nest in the immediate area - great horned owls, merlins and ravens being some examples from recent years. Bear sightings are rare in Savage, but a few pass through the campground every summer. Read below for more wildlife safety information.
There is a maximum of eight people per site.
Group Camp Sites
There are three group camping sites in Savage. These are for parties of 9 to 20 people. Commercial groups must have pre-approval to use these sites.
The group sites are located towards the rear of the campground.
Necessities. Restrooms, both flush-toilet and pit-vaults, can be found throughout the campground. Potable water is available at spigots throughout the campground. All sites have a picnic table and fire grates (see below).
Be courteous. Quiet hours are between 10 pm and 6 am. Generators may only be operated from 8 am to 10 am, and 4 pm to 8 pm. There are no exceptions to these rules.
Wildlife & food storage. Keep all food and scented items (e.g., toothpaste, sunscreen, ice chests/coolers, etc.) in your hard-sided vehicle, if available. If you are tent-camping without a vehicle, use the food lockers found throughout the campground. Label and date your items in the food locker. Keep a clean camp and wash your dishes immediately. Learn more about wildlife safety.
Fire. Fires are allowed only in established grates. Wood may be purchased at the Riley Creek Mercantile. Use of power saws and cutting of live vegetation or standing deadwood are prohibited. Do not leave your campfire unattended. Do not cook on fire grates - use foil, and immediately dispose of it after cooking.
Pets. Pets are welcome at Savage. Dispose of pet feces in garbage cans. Secure pet food in your vehicle or a food locker. Learn more about camping with your pet.