Dispersed Camping

This page includes information on backcountry campsites and dispersed camping.

Backcountry Camping

While camping in the Sylvania Wilderness is remote, it is not considered dispersed as use of these designated, backcountry camp sites is managed and requires a special recreation permit. These single isolated campsites within Sylvania Wilderness require boating or hiking to reach. They have a cleared area for a tent, a campfire ring, and a wilderness latrine (an open pit toilet with no outhouse building).

Reservations for Sylvania Backcountry Camping are available on Recreation.Gov.  A few sites are reserved for walk-in, first-come/first-served visitors.  For more click here.

Dispersed Camping

Camping is allowed in general National Forest areas for no longer than 16-days in any one location. After that period of time, if you wish to continue camping in a dispersed area of the Ottawa National Forest, you must relocate to another site at least five miles away. This means you may not set up a dispersed campsite within a developed campground or adjacent to it, or on a road, or on a trail. Remember to pack out what you pack in.


Dispersed Camping Areas

  • Bergland Ranger District
  • Trap Hills
  • Bessemer Ranger District
  • Kenton Ranger District
  • Sturgeon River Gorge Wilderness
  • McCormick Wilderness
  • Watersmeet Ranger District
  • Sylvania Wilderness Backcountry Camping

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities