Gifford Pinchot National Forest

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Dispersed camping is allowed within 150′ of the edge of an allowed road
  • Time limit: 14 days, after which you must move 5 miles
  • No camping within 100′ of water sources
  • More rules

Designated Dispersed Camping Areas:

Continue reading “Gifford Pinchot National Forest”

George Washington and Jefferson National Forests

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Dispersed camping is permitted except in specifically designated areas
  • Groups must be limited to 10 people in wildernesses or 75 people otherwise
  • Time limit: 21 consecutive days
  • No camping within 200′ of any water source
  • Private land is intermixed; check the MVUMs.
  • More rules

There are no designated dispersed areas in GWNF. Continue reading “George Washington and Jefferson National Forests”

Fremont-Winema National Forest

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Dispersed camping is allowed within 300 feet of the edge of an approved road.
  • Time limit: 14 days. The forest office could not tell me how far you must move or how long before you can return, but it sounds like you have to leave the forest completely (including equipment) to reset the camping “period”.



Francis Marion National Forest

Francis Marion NF is mixed in with Sumter NF on the website, which may make the rules a bit harder to find and separate. FMNF handles “dispersed” camping in a somewhat unusual way.

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Roadside vehicle camping is not allowed within FMNF. Backcountry / wilderness tent camping is allowed with a free permit.
  • Camping is allowed within designated primitive sites without a permit.  Free; time limit: 14 days.
  • Campfire permits are not required, but check for fire bans

Apparently some people cook meth in this forest. Be able to recognize meth trash, avoid it, and report it. Continue reading “Francis Marion National Forest”

Flathead National Forest

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Dispersed camping is allowed within 300 feet of an allowed road according to the MVUMs, but the office said you can camp basically anywhere.
  • Party size limited to 15 people around the South Fork of the Flathead River; 10 people in some areas.
  • Time limit: 16 days in one spot, after which you must move 5 miles. You can return to the original spot after 7 days.
  • The office says there are some good spots for vehicle camping. Don’t block gates, roads, etc.  Described it as “so-so”.
  • Cell coverage is basically nonexistent.

Continue reading “Flathead National Forest”

Fishlake National Forest

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Dispersed camping is allowed within 150 feet of the centerline of an allowed road.
  • The way this is worded, it sounds like dispersed camping is only allowed within one mile of a campground. That doesn’t sound right.
  • Time limit: 16 days, after which you must move 5 miles. Campers may not return to the same campsite within one calendar year.
  • No camping within 100′ of any water source.
  • No camping within 150′ of a roadway.
  • No camping “in the vicinity of” campgrounds, trailhead, picnic areas, etc.
  • No camping in the middle of a clearing or meadow; try to hide your campsite

Continue reading “Fishlake National Forest”

Finger Lakes National Forest

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Dispersed camping is allowed in most locations unless there is a specific closure order for that area
  • There is a lot of private property mixed in with the forest, so be sure to check the MVUMs.
  • Camp at least 200′ from trails or bodies of water
  • Reuse existing campsites if you can
  • Do not camp in alpine or subalpine zones where trees are less than 8′ tall
  • Time limit: 14 days in a 30 day period, after which you must leave the forest entirely.

Continue reading “Finger Lakes National Forest”

Eldorado National Forest

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Time limit: 10 days in each district per year. That is, you can camp in a given district for any 10 days out of the year, regardless of when they are. There are 4 districts, so you can camp in the forest for up to 40 total days per year.
  • This is California, so (free) permits are required for campfires.
  • Visitors can camp “just about anywhere in the forest, unless specifically prohibited”; and not around 9 specific lakes; and not within 100 feet of a stream or lake; and not within the boundary markings of a developed campground.
  • Vehicles must be parked within one vehicle length of the edge of the surface of an allowed road.

Continue reading “Eldorado National Forest”

El Yunque National Forest

El Yunque is the only tropical rainforest in the National Forest system.

Dispersed Camping Rules:

  • Camping permits must be requested at least 10 days prior to the camping date(s).  There is no fee for the permit.
  • Camping is allowed year round, but the gate to Road PR191 is closed from 6PM to 7:30AM.
  • Time limit: 14 days.
  • I called to get more information, but I kept getting a fast busy. Roadside camping does not seem practical in Puerto Rico.

There are no developed camping facilities in EYNF.