Slough Creek Campground Yellowstone

The Slough Creek Campground in Yellowstone is one of a few sites that will begin taking advance reservations this year.

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Visitors will be able to reserve more campsites in advance at Yellowstone National Park for the first time this year, federal officials announced Tuesday.

The National Park Service announced it plans to bring the Mammoth, Slough Creek and Pebble Creek campgrounds into its reservation system this spring. Starting on March 24 at 8 a.m. Mountain Standard Time, the sites will open for reservations on Recreation.gov. Reservations can be made up to six months in advance.

To cover the cost of the online reservation system with Recreation.gov, officials plan to raise campground fees by $5. The fee hike applies to the Mammoth, Slough Creek, Pebble Creek, Indian Creek and Lewis Lake campgrounds.

The change means only two-and-a-half campgrounds in Yellowstone will continue to operate on a first-come, first served basis. Those campgrounds include the Indian Creek and Lewis Lake campgrounds and some sites at the Pebble Creek Campground. The Norris and Tower Fall campgrounds are closed this year.

Starting on March 24, visitors can reserve all 85 sites at the Mammoth Campground in advance for dates between May 1 to Oct. 15 — the park’s busy season. The sites will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis the rest of the year.

All 15 sites at the Slough Creek Campground can be reserved for dates between June 15 and Oct. 15, beginning on March 24. The campground is closed the rest of the year.

At the Pebble Creek Campground’s 27 sites, 16 will be available for online reservations from June 15 to Sept. 27. The campground is closed the rest of the year.

The park plans to continue offering the other 11 sites at the campground on a first-come, first-served basis.

The decision to include more campgrounds in the reservation system was in response to requests from the public, park officials wrote. Sites managed by Yellowstone National Park Lodges can already be reserved in advance. They include the Bridge Bay, Madison, Canyon and Grant Village campgrounds and the Fishing Bridge RV Park.

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Helena Dore can be reached at hdore@dailychronicle.com or at 582-2628.

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