Devil's Elbow Recreation Area

BLM

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5981 York Road
Helena, MT 59601
406-227-3570
406-533-7600
Official Website

GPS: 46.7001, -111.8057

Last Price Paid: $15
Number of Sites: 42
Pad Type: gravel
Open Seasonally: April-Nov.
Elevation: 3694 ft
Max Stay: 14
Tent Camping: Yes

2 people have reviewed this location.

Ratings Summary

Access
Location
Cleanliness
Site Quality
Noise

Cell Phone Coverage

2bars
Verizon 4G
2bars
AT&T 4G
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The Dog Is Driving

38 Fleetwood Revolution
2008 Jeep Wrangler
8 reviews
Nightly rate: $15
Days stayed: 13
Site Number: Loop A, Space 1

The Dog Is Driving would stay here again

“Popular with boaters, dry camping, nice sites & dog friendly. ”

Reviewed Aug 12, 2017

Overall Rating

Dry camping, but the are RV friendly potable water spigots on site and a $10 dump station a few minutes down the road at a Lakeside General store. Pit toilets, no showers.

We showed up on a Monday afternoon, which was a great time to arrive. Summertime, this seems to be a really popular weekend spot for boaters. We noticed people dropping off travel trailers to secure spots starting on Wednesdays and by late Thursday it seemed every RV spot was taken (tent sites didn't seem to fill up as much). Rules are that you can't leave your property unattended for 24 hours so if you're a local and you stop by once a day to check on your stuff, I guess it's a good way to save a spot for the upcoming weekend (at the cost of $15/day). We chose space 1 in loop A. It overlooked the Missouri river and we only had neighbors to our left. Each spot comes with a metal picnic table and fire ring.

Camp hosts are very friendly and helpful. They let us know about the off-leash dog area recently created, which includes access to a "pet swim cove" which was really cool (our dog wanted nothing to do with the water, but if you have a water dog, they'll love it!) You can continue past the pet swim cove with your off-leash dog, on some trails. We did a 1.5 mile loop each morning and evening within the campground (leashed) on pavement.

It got hot here in late July, early August. There's a breeze though an you can run your generator during the day. You can swim right below the cliff at the "swim beach" which is more of a kiddie-swim area. It's all of 3 feet deep, but, it's close and refreshing. If you want to walk further, you'll have a bigger swim area at Clark's Bay, which connects via paved path to Devil's Elbow.

About a 25 minute drive up the road, past the town of York, you'll find the Trout Creek Canyon trailhead. It's a 6 mile out and back hike, but after the first 1.5 miles the terrain got steeper and rockier so we turned back, making it 3 miles in total. Nice hike for a cool day.

Overall we really liked our stay at Devil's Elbow Campground. Pretty mellow and quiet during the week. Weekend boaters seemed to play their music a lot louder than the mid-week crowd -- so be ready for that! Pit toilets were clean. And the most pleasant surprise was that there weren't really any bugs around! Groceries and services in Helena, about a 20 minute drive.

Access
Location
Cleanliness
Site Quality
Noise

This review is the opinion of a Campendium member and not of Campendium.com


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zo.roy
TX
30 Grand Design Reflection
2013 Ford F250
7 reviews
Nightly rate: $15
Days stayed: 5

zo.roy would stay here again

“Back to basics right on the lake”

Reviewed Oct 06, 2016

Overall Rating

While the facilities are basic (no hookups) Devil's Elbow can't be beat for spacious sites (most with waterfront views), close location to town, helpful hosts and clean facilities. We were looking for a cheaper place to stay close to Helena for a few days to catch up on some errands. This place fit the bill and as we arrived on a Tuesday had a lot of sites to choose from and were lucky enough to get one on the waterfront - we were so close to the lake we could hear the fish jumping out of the water!
As this seems to be a popular place for the locals with boats to hang out on the weekend (there is a boat launch at the campsite) try to get here earlier in the week if possible to snag a good spot as you cannot reserve. There is no dump station, no power, no showers, there are drop toilets, and each site seems to have its own picnic table and fire ring. There are also a number of group sites I believe can be reserved. Cell phone coverage for AT&T was a bit patchy, but as you are so close to town we just drove in and set up in a cafe for a few hours when we needed the net. There is also a great path network along the lake and to the next cove which is good for dog walking or a run up the hill if you need a bit of exercise!

Access
Location
Cleanliness
Site Quality
Noise
2bars
AT&T 4G
2bars
Verizon 4G

This review is the opinion of a Campendium member and not of Campendium.com


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RV park review: Devil's Elbow Recreation Site

We chose to stay at Devil's Elbow Recreation Site in Helena for several reasons. It was about a 20 minute drive to town, the location was known to get windy, which we thought would help in the current...

Hookups:
  • dry camping
Recreation:
  • boat ramp
  • fishing
  • picnic area
  • recreation trail
  • swimming beach
  • water access
Site Amenities:
  • fire ring
  • picnic table
Facilities:
  • group sites
  • restrooms: vault
  • trash
  • water available
Pets:
  • pets

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