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Sand Island Recreation Area

Bears Ears National Monument



Sand Island Recreation Area is a campground located along the San Juan River, with 23 campsites featuring tents/trailers, picinic tables, fire rings, and vault toilets. Visitors can launch San Juan River float trips from the campground, explore the Cedar Mesa area of Bears Ears National Monument, and visit nearby attractions including Valley of the Gods and Goosenecks State Park.


Sand Island Recreation Area is a good camping option for visitors launching San Juan River float trips, or wishing to camp close to the town of Bluff or the Cedar Mesa area of Bears Ears National Monument. The campground provides 23 campsites that each feature a tent/trailer space, a picnic table, a fire ring, and vault toilets. Drinking water is available seasonally (typically March through October). Each campsite can hold 8 people and 2 vehicles. Reservations are not available for camping at this location. Individual campsites are available on a first come, first served basis upon arrival at the self-register kiosk at the site. The Sand Island Group Sites are available for larger groups, and may be reserved here


Sand Island is the primary launch point for multi-day San Juan River float trips. San Juan River trips provide boaters with access to spectacular canyons rich in scenery, geology, archeology, history and wildlife. A river permit is required in advance. The Sand Island Petroglyph Panel site is located on the sandstone walls on the north side of the recreation area. There are many nearby hiking and scenic driving opportuites in the Cedar Mesa area of Bears Ears National Monument.

Natural Features

Sand Island is located along the San Juan River. Cottonwood trees line the banks of the river and are scattered throughout the campground, providing shade at many of the sites. The north side of the campground is lined with red sandstone walls.

Nearby Attractions

  • Bears Ears National Monument 
  • San Juan River
  • Cedar Mesa
  • Valley of the Gods
  • Goosenecks State Park


For facility specific information, please call (435) 587-1500.

Charges & Cancellations

No refunds are available.

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Campground Matrix

Set alerts at more campgrounds to increase your odds of getting a place to stay! Below is a list of the closest campgrounds supported on Campflare. Or, view all campgrounds in Bears Ears National Monument.

Nearby Campgrounds Distance Notification Rate
Sand Island Group Sites
Devils Canyon
Manti-La Sal National Forest
Manti-La Sal National Forest
Manti-La Sal National Forest
Mcphee Recreation Complex
San Juan National Forest
Superbowl Group Site
Bears Ears National Monument
61.0mi 50%
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