Boondocking / Dry Camping, Off the Beaten Path Series, Travel Destinations & Stories

Off the Beaten Path in North Dakota

If this is your first time here – WELCOME! If not, welcome back!! As full-time RV’ers we travel and see a lot. This is part of our Off The Beaten Path series where we explore the hidden treasures in every state. We love the big popular attractions like everyone else, however, there is just something incredible about discovering something unique and different. Our goals are to find the most unexplored places, and take those roads less traveled. We certainly can’t explore them all, so we’d love you to share your own off the beaten path stories with us. Each series will include at least 1 epic boondocking / free camping area, with GPS coordinates.


Traveling through North Dakota was really much like traveling through South Dakota. Its hard not to fall in love with the hills and buttes that cover North Dakota’s landscape. From the Red River to the Little Missouri and everywhere in between. We loved Theadore Roosevelt National Park. Since it’s more popular, we won’t go into all the things to see there, but definitely go!!

Lewis and Clark Riverboat

The Lewis and Clark Riverboat is a 40-foot flat-bottomed boat that departs from Bismarck and sails along the Missouri River every Summer. You can choose to just cruise the river and take in the landscape views from the water (definitely go at sunset), or opt for the food-filled dinner cruise option if you want to make a night of it.

Enchanted Highway

I think this has gotten more popular, but still a really fun thing to see. Odd, but fun! One man’s quest to save his town with a trail of record-breaking sculptures. If you are traveling with young kids, I think they will love this highway! Located at exit 72, approximately 20 miles east of Dickinson via I-94, the Enchanted Highway is clearly marked by road signs and billboards with easy on-off access from the Interstate.

The International Peace Garden

This garden was intentionally grown where Manitoba Highway 10 becomes North Dakota Highway 3, because, “it’s the longest north/south road in the world,” symbolizing the connection between the United States and Canada. The Garden itself is dedicated to the harmony between the two nations. It spans 2,339 acres and can take up to two hours to drive through. But do it! Tip: There’s a 1.5 mile hike around the gorgeous Lake Stormon. This peaceful oasis is worth the hike. Quiet, and not many people do the hike.

Lake Metigoshe State Park

On the Canadian border, Lake Metigoshe State Park offers a well-rounded, classic lake with walleye fishing, a beach, clean cabins, a Fourth of July fireworks show plus some amazing kayaking if that’s your thing, with way less noise and crowds than you’ll find at big, better-known Lake Sakakawea.

St. Patricks Day Pub Crawl

This is a fun event put on each year. If you plan this right, you’ll have lots of fun! Running O’ the Green is an event in Jamestown where you dress up in green the Saturday before/after St. Patrick’s Day (check calendar for actual date) and run down a snow covered hill to start off a pub crawl for charity. Fun and giving back! That’s perfect, right? If you want more information on this, I think YouTube has some videos on it. 

Abandoned Towns

Since we love photography, sometimes there is just something strangely beautiful about abandoned towns. And there isn’t a lack of those in North Dakota. Most of the ghost towns dwindled because of the railroad leaving, but so many buildings still stand in some towns. We just like the photography and history. Sometimes driving through these areas you can imagine the thriving town and wonder about the people who lived there. Schoolhouses, churches and old homes – dilapidated today. Definitely check them out if you’re curious! Check out Arena and Verendrye for sure!

Boondocking

North Carlson Lake – Douglas – GPS: 47.921023, -101.470419 Big rig friendly! Bathrooms and trashcans. Pretty nice little county park. 

DOUGLAS CREEK – GARRISON ND

Douglas Creek – Garrison GPS: 47.578242, -101.574641 Awesome big rig place, with amazing views, and great cell service! Awesome free CoE (Corps of Engineers) park!

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