Dispersed Camping

Camping on the Mendocino is not limited to developed campgrounds. Most of the forest is open to those who prefer the quiet and solitude of a completely undeveloped setting. This type of camping is called Dispersed Camping.

You may disperse camp in any one location for up to 14 days on the forest. When you go home, leave the forest the way you found it, or better, for the enjoyment of the next visitor.

A Clean Camp is Required

Please choose a camping spot where you will leave a minimal impact.

  • Always plan ahead for accumulation and storage of your garbage and take it with you when you leave. Never burn or bury garbage in the forest.
  • Likewise, it is your responsibility to manage human waste.  There are many commercial products on the market to deal with human waste.  If you must bury it, be sure to dig a hole at least 6 inches or more down into soil and stay at least 100 feet away from any river, lake, stream, spring or trail. Never bury toilet paper or sanitary products. Animals will dig it up and scatter it around the area.
  • Never damage trees or vegetation to create a campsite. Do not dig trenches or build tent platforms.
  • A current California Campfire Permit is required to use a camp stove, barbecue or have a campfire outside of developed areas. Local fire restrictions supersede the campfire permit. Inquire at the Ranger Station before having a fire. You may use "dead and down" wood for your campfire.
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Dispersed Camping Areas

Areas & Activities


https://www.fs.usda.gov/activity/mendocino/recreation/camping-cabins/?recid=25120&actid=34