Madison Junction Area

Yellowstone Park

Yellowstone Park

Madison Junction Area

Includes Madison Campground, Madison Junction, Madison River, Madison Canyon, Firehole River Drive


Madison River along the Madison Canyon in Yellowstone National Park.


"America's Campground"

The Madison Area in Yellowstone National Park is home to what many people feel is "America's Campground". We definitely agree because the Madison Campground was where Dave's parents would take many of their family vacations while he was growing up.  In fact, some of his fondest childhood memories are of camping at Madison Campground, and now every time we visit the Madison Area, all of those memories come pouring back.  And that's true for many families across the country.  If you want to truly experience the magic of camping in Yellowstone Park, then the Madison Campground is exactly what you're looking for.  It's one of our favorite campgrounds in Yellowstone Park.
(See the Madison Area Map at the bottom of page

Madison Campground


Madison Campground is one of our favorite Yellowstone Park campgrounds, and we highly recommend camping here.

Madison Campground is without a doubt one of the most celebrated campgrounds in Yellowstone National Park, and once you've camped here, you'll understand the magic that surrounds this area.  You'll probably start a family tradition of camping here for many years to come just as millions of other visitors have.  Camping at Madison Campground in Yellowstone National Park is indeed a genuine American Tradition.
For more information on Yellowstone Park campgrounds, click here.
This beach along the Madison River in Yellowstone National Park is right next to the Madison Campground.  It's a favorite place for everyone to relax and play in the river.
A beautiful bull elk crosses the Madison River in Yellowstone National Park near Madison Junction.

The Madison River

One of the great things about the Madison Area in Yellowstone National Park is the Madison River that flows right next to the campground.  This beautiful river is a kid's dream come true- you can swim in it, you can play on the incredible beach, you can fish, you can explore the river banks, and there is even a warm hot spring right along the river where you can actually sit in it!

The Madison River is an incredibly famous image of Yellowstone Park, and it forms right at Madison Junction where the Gibbon River and the Firehole River meet.  The Madison River heads straight west through the broad Madison Canyon, and flows just to the north of West Yellowstone, Montana. (West Yellowstone is located at the West Entrance of Yellowstone National Park.)   The highway between Madison Junction and West Yellowstone follows the Madison nearly the entire way, and it is definitely a terrific side-trip off the Grand Loop.  You'll see a lot of wildlife and incredible scenery the entire way.  There are buffalo, elk, wolves, trumpeter swans, bald eagles, and many other species of wildlife.  If you've got the time, it's really a fantastic drive
Mount Haynes dominates the southern skyline along the Madison Canyon between Madison Junction and West Yellowstone, Montana in Yellowstone National Park.  

The Madison River is one the most beautiful rivers in Yellowstone National Park.

Firehole River Drive

The Firehole River Drive in Yellowstone National Park is located just a few miles south of Madison Junction on the Grand Loop.  It's a 2 mile long one-way paved road that takes you through a deeply cut canyon that is both fascinating and breathtaking.  You will pass through lava rock that is 800 feet thick, as well as pass by the 40 foot Firehole Falls and Firehole Rapids.
This is really a great little side trip off the Grand Loop, and it's well worth the time.  It doesn't take long and the scenery is oustanding!  By the way, the photo to the left is an example of the 800 foot wall of lava, and you'll drive right underneath!  We really enjoy this short drive every single time we go on it, and we're confident that you will too!

Firehole Swimming Area

Along the Firehole Canyon Drive in Yellowstone National Park, you'll pass the famous Firehole Swimming Area.  We had some of the best times ever swimming here when we were kids, and if you like that sort of thing, we highly recommend it.
The water is fairly warm because most of the geyser water from the Old Faithful Area and "Geyser Row" ends up flowing into the Firehole River in Yellowstone National Park.  There is a really deep pool that you can enjoy, or you can try to swim up the rapids which is a ton of fun as well.  In the "old days", kids and adults used to jump off the towering cliffs that surround the swimming area, but it is now illegal to do so.   The bottom line is this: if you've got the time and desire, you will absolutely have a blast swimming in the legendary Firehole Swimming Area in Yellowstone Park!  Oh, and by the way, it has a great beach too!
Firehole Swimming Area
A bull elk bugles during the fall mating season along the shore of the Madison River in Yellowstone National Park.
Fly fisherman on the Madison River

Buffalo Jams!

These Buffalo really have a mind of their own, and if they want to be stubborn, they will hold up traffic for miles.  We like Buffalo Jams because it's such a "Yellowstone Park Thing".  It's another tradition that generations of visitors have endured throughout the years.
If you're ever in one, just relax and enjoy the view.  There's really nothing else you can do but to wait it out!

Trumpeter Swans are found throughout the Madison Canyon in Yellowstone National Park, and are a real treat to observe.

Madison Junction Map, Yellowstone National Park Map
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