When my family sets out on our camping trips, I like to leave some wiggle room for exploring something that catches our attention. Last summer, I read about camping at Hart Mountain National Antelope refuge. I had visions of antelope roaming the prairie by the thousands. Additional wild life includes mule deer and big horn sheep. We saw both deer and prong horned antelope.
The area boast 2 natural hot springs which we really enjoy. One hot spring is developed with a large concrete pool and the other is a natural pool sitting in a meadow. The developed hot spring is large enough to stand in. It’s fun to mingle with other campers and hot spring enthusiasts. The undeveloped hot spring rests in a field a few hundred feet away and is not visible nor marked and offers complete privacy. Both are wonderful.
Hart mountain is really off the beaten path. It’s not on the way to or from anywhere. You have to make it a point to drive there. The gravel roads can be bumpy when driving up or down the mountain grade. Hart mountain is located on top a high plateau with steep cliffs. The drive up gives you beautiful views of the watershed below. My kids said it was like being on an African Safari in the savannas. How they knew this is beyond me because we have never been to Africa.
Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge Campground Review
Other than a basic visitors center with a small museum, there are no services such as electricity and running water at the campgrounds. Camping at Hart Mountain is primitive at best. There a few clean stove pipe outhouse toilets. Don’t expect picnic tables and fire rings either. This is bush camping. Drinking water is available at refuge headquarters. Camping is on a first-come, first-served basis. There are no reservations and no camping fees. This is my kind of camping.
When we pulled into the camping area with our old white cargo van, we were surrounded by a group of Land Rovers with tents on the roofs. The people belonged to Land Rover club that hunts deer and antelope with bow and arrows. This fascinated my wife who now is determined for me to become skilled in archery.