Find An Affordable Campground with Hookups Near You!

Traveling around the US in your RV is great for retirees, families, singles, and anyone who wants to hit the open road. The best part is you don’t have to break the bank to RV. You can find an affordable campground with hookups near you.

Check out some of our picks to help you RV on a budget with these affordable campgrounds with hookups.

white pickup truck with topper pulling a teardrop camper at an affordable campground in New Mexico.
Photo courtesy RV LIFE Campgrounds.

1. Valley of Fires Recreation Area

Located near Carrizozo, New Mexico, the Valley of Fires Recreation Area is adjacent to the Malpais Lava Flow. Water and electric sites are $18 per night. Book through Remaining sites are first-come, first served.

The spacious sites at this affordable campground have a great view of the lava flow and don’t miss out on the amazing sunsets.

More than 5,000 years ago Little Black Peak erupted and flowed 44 miles into the Tularosa Basin, filling the basin with molten rock. The resulting lava flow is 4-6 miles wide, 160 feet thick, and covers 125 square miles. The lava flow is one of the youngest in the continental US.

As you walk through the Malpais nature trail, you will see many varieties of flowers, cacti, trees, and bushes typical of the Chihuahuan desert. Animals include bats, roadrunners, quail, cottontails, barberry sheep, mule deer, and lizards. It’s also a birdwatcher’s paradise with the chance to see great horned owls, burrowing owls, turkey vultures, hawks, gnatcatchers, golden eagles, and more.

Check out the visitor’s center, watch an interpretive program, or see nearby petroglyphs, arches, or a slot canyon.

white and black Class A camper in campground site with black dog outside
Photo courtesy RV LIFE Campgrounds.

2. Cave-in-Rock State Park

At just $20 for weeknights and $30 for the weekend, Cave-in-Rock State Park is a great place to connect with nature. The affordable campground features 30-amp hookups and a centralized area where you can get water and dump your RV’s holding tanks. The park is located on the Ohio River in Hardin County, Illinois.

The park is named for the 55-foot-wide limestone cave which was carved out of water. Don’t miss the beautiful views overlooking the Ohio River, hiking trails for exploration, as well as shaded picnic areas, a playground for the kids, and a fishing pond. The river is accessible from two boat ramps.

On the property is the Cave-in-Rock Restaurant and Lodge which features southern-style cooking.

3. Three Rivers Petroglyphs Site

According to one reviewer, this affordable campground is off the main road and is a “hidden gem” with beautiful views. The sites are large, but they are first-come, first-served. There are only two with electric and water hookups. The sites are big-rig friendly with plenty of room to maneuver. Each site has a cement patio with a covered table.

The campground is located 17 miles north of Tularosa, New Mexico, and 28 miles south of Carrizozo, where you can check out the Valley of Fires Recreation Area.

The site has some 21,000 petroglyphs including masks, sunbursts, wildlife, handprints, and geometric designs. This is one of our notable affordable campgrounds because its one of the few locations in the Southwest set aside for its rock art. It is also one of the few sites that gives visitors direct access to petroglyphs. A rugged .5-mile trail begins at the visitor shelter and showcases many of the most interesting petroglyphs. Another short trail begins on the east side of the picnic area and leads to a partially excavated prehistoric village.

The petroglyphs here date back to between 200–1450 AD. They were created by the Jornada Mogollon people.

Make sure to take both sides of the loop trail. Don’t miss the Trading Post to browse beautiful art, jewelry, textiles, and a used book collection.

Photo courtesy RV LIFE Campgrounds.

4. Clark Canyon Recreation Area

This affordable campground (FREE!) has full hookups with 30- and 50-amp service. It is located on the Beaverhead River south of Dillon, Montana, and is managed by the Bureau of Reclamation.

The campground is the site of Camp Fortunate, a significant spot along the Lewis and Clark Trail. It was here that the expedition met the Lemhi Shoshoni Tribe and Sacagawea was reunited with her people. The Camp Fortunate Interpretive Site provides information about the Lewis and Clark journey.

The Clark County Reservoir has 17 miles of shoreline with great fishing for rainbow and brown trout. There are concrete boat ramps, picnic areas, and picnic shelters. The nine campgrounds include one RV-only lot for a total of 96 campsites. The Cattail Marsh nature trail offers wildlife-watching opportunities.

Dillon is only 15 miles north of the campground and has plenty of shopping and dining opportunities. Also check out the Dillon Visitor Center, Bannack State Park, Beaverhead River, or the Beaverhead County Museum.

5. Fort Kaskaskia Campground

Located in Ellis Grove, Illinois, the Fort Kaskaskia campground is south of St. Louis near the border of Missouri and Illinois. Electric-only sites at this affordable campground are $18 a night. There is water and a dump station nearby.

green grass in foreground with stone pillars overlooking a river
Photo courtesy RV LIFE Campgrounds.

Fort Kaskaskia and the grounds of the Pierre Menard home are open 365 days a year from sunrise to sunset. Tours are offered during seasonal hours and are also available by reservation.

The area is somewhat isolated, but there’s plenty to do. Enjoy the bluff overlooking the Mississippi River, and explore the fort or an old cemetery. There are also picnic areas, a playground, and more beautiful views.

Fort Kaskaskia was constructed by the French in 1759 to defend the town of Kaskaskia, founded in 1703. It served as the first capital of Illinois from 1818–1820. Also, check out the Pierre Menard home. Menard was a French-Canadian businessman and fur trader, and was presiding officer of the Illinois Territorial Legislature from 1818–1822. He also served as the state’s first lieutenant governor.

white pickup truck with white travel trailer in heavily wooded campsite
Photo courtesy RV LIFE Campgrounds.

6. Huckleberry Campground

Huckleberry Campground is located near Calder, Idaho, along the shores of the St. Joe River, 29 miles east of St. Maries, Idaho. Make your reservation at RV sites at this affordable campground with electric and water are $23 per night. Sites are paved (some gravel) and feature picnic tables and fire rings. There is a dump station available.

The campground is a hub for campers, hunters, fishermen, and ATVers. Nearby are US Forest Service and Idaho Department of Lands roads. It is also a central location for fishing and floating trips.

There is no cell service here. Unplug and enjoy nature and the abundant wildlife. Make your reservation well in advance and secure a river access site. It is a popular campground.

Calder is about 9 miles from the campground and has plenty of modern conveniences. Check out Avery, which is about 23 miles away, for local cuisine and hike the route of the Hiawatha.

white and black Class A camper parked next to a black pickup truck with firewood in the bed and picnic table in the foreground
Photo courtesy RV LIFE Campgrounds.

7. Kil-So-Quah – J. Edward Roush Lake

The J. Edward Roush Lake, Kil-So-Quah campground is near Huntington, Indiana, and is managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. There are 41 electric sites at this affordable campground at $15 per day. There are 20 primitive sites at $12 per day. Water is available seasonally and there is a dump station. All campsites have fire rings and picnic tables. Camping is open year-round on a first-come, first-served basis. The maximum stay is 14 days after which you must leave for 48 hours.

This wildlife area provides outdoor recreational activities on its 7,347 acres of land and 900 acres of lake. The property is a 15-mile-long band along the Wabash River. Huntington Lake was constructed in 1967 to control floodwaters along the Wabash River basin.

There are a number of activities provided at the Lake. Fishing, hunting, trapping, and wildlife observation are all popular. So is biking, hiking, and water recreation. There is a nearby shooting range for archery, handguns, rifles, and shotguns.

Huntington is only 7 miles away and home to the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum. You can also check out a murder mystery detective experience, scavenger hunt, or the Dan Quayle Vice Presidential Learning Center.

More Options To RV On A Budget

Maybe you prefer campgrounds with lots of amenities and don’t mind paying for those options. If you are a little more budget-minded, check out more affordable campgrounds or free camping options that can provide you with plenty of adventure and stories to tell your families and friends.

Harvest Hosts

The annual $179 fee includes both Harvest Hosts and Boondockers Welcome. It grants access to thousands of sites across the US. While most of these sites do not have hookups, you will find a few that have electricity and water. When you sign up you can access the information about sites and find out whether they provide hookups. Sites include farms, wineries, breweries, attractions, and other unique camping spots.

BLM land

The Bureau of Land Management manages millions of acres of land across the US. Camping on BLM land is a valid way of camping for free, but most do not have hookups. Some BLM land campgrounds do require a fee and will have some utilities available. Go to for more information.

Camping on these public lands away from developed recreation areas is called dispersed camping. It’s a great way to RV on a budget. There is a ton of dispersed camping in the western half of the US. Make sure a spot you pick isn’t designated for other use or is posted “closed to camping.” Dispersed camping is generally not allowed on public land for more than 14 days within a 28-day period.

Most dispersed campsites are located along secondary roads and may not be marked. If possible, use existing sites to avoid creating new disturbances in natural areas.

Department of Natural Resources

There is a Department of Natural Resources website for all 50 states. Check it out here to find campgrounds, lakes, and reservoirs that are guided by these state agencies.

Final Thoughts On How To RV On A Budget

Hopefully, you found some great low-cost campgrounds on our list. Also check out Top 10 Places to Find Free Hookup RV Sites or go to site to see more than 20,000 campgrounds with all the details, reviews, and photos.

The post Find An Affordable Campground with Hookups Near You! appeared first on RV LIFE.