During your next outdoor adventure head to a Forest Service (FS) or Bureau of Land Management (BLM) area. These public lands are open to you for camping! For the most part that is - it’s called dispersed camping. In a tiny nutshell, this is when you drive down a FS or BLM road and find an area you want to call home for a few days and set up camp.
There is a little bit of fine print to this:
|Dispersed camping in Lamoille Canyon|
- Make sure you are on public lands that allow dispersed camping; I recommend getting a map of the area you plan to travel.
- Some areas within FS and BLM do not allow dispersed camping, such as day-use areas and areas with heavy use – check with the local land management offices if you are unsure.
- Some states require campfire permits to have any type of open flame, which includes a campfire, charcoal grill, propane stove and lantern, candle, etc. Nevada and California are two of these states. Also note if there are any current fire restrictions in the area you are traveling to – at the moment that’s pretty much, if not all, of the western United States.
- Be sure to plan ahead and prepare! When you disperse camp you get the benefits of quiet, solitude, and the reasonably low price of free! However, you don’t get any of the usual amenities of a developed campground, so bring your own water and bathroom supplies; plus, be sure to pack out everything you packed in.
- Camp on durable surfaces – as in chose an existing site rather than the middle of a meadow.
Leave it better than you found it,