Dispersed Camping

Many people enjoy the solitude and primitive experience of dispersed camping - camping away from developed campgrounds and other campers with few services or facilities. Additional skills are necessary for a successful trip. It is your responsibility to know your limits and abilities before you try this experience. Certain rules and regulations will make your experience safe and ensure settings remain scenic and unspoiled.

  1. Leave No Trace.
  2. Be Bear Aware. Bears call the National Forests in Florida home, so camp accordingly.
  3. Reduce Waste.
    1. Pack it in, pack it out. Throw trash in proper containers.
    2. Bury human and pet waste at least 6 inches deep and 100 feet from any water source.
  4. Camp Considerately.
    1. Dispersed camping is not allowed near developed recreation areas or less than 100 feet from streams and other water sources.
    2. Pick a previously used site. Plants, soil and wildlife are impacted by new campsites.
    3. Make your campsite less visible so others can enjoy a “wild” setting.
    4. Avoid camping in the middle of a clearing or meadow.
    5. Be aware of forest boundaries. Get permission before camping on private property.
  5. Control your Campfire.
    1. Check our Alerts & Notices and Forest Orders for fire restrictions before you leave home.
    2. Use existing fire rings, fire pans or mound fires to avoid scarring new rocks, soil and plants.
    3. Gather and use down and dead firewood. Do not cut standing trees or limbs off standing trees.
    4. Burn all wood and coals down to ashes.
    5. Make sure campfires are dead out, wet and cold to the touch before leading Soak them with water and stir with a shovel.
  6. Know the Rules.
    1. Generally, there is a 14-day per month stay limit on the National Forests in Florida. It's illegal to establish residency on the forest. 
    2. Groups of over 75 people must get a special use permit from the district office for the forest where you want to hold your event.
    3. Pets are welcome in most areas but must be controlled.
    4. Camping is allowed only in designated campsites during general gun season, as defined in Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission regulations for Wildlife Management Areas.

[Expand Text]

Dispersed Camping Areas

Areas & Activities