Primitive Campgrounds

The Ozark National Forest has five wilderness areas totaling 65,826 acres of undisturbed beauty. These wilderness areas were created by the Arkansas Wilderness Act of 1984. The wilderness areas are open for primitive camping, hunting and fishing (in season), hiking, swimming (if available), nature study, and to those seeking solitude.

The Ozark Region has four distinct seasons with a temperature range from 10-15 degrees below zero to over 100 degrees F. Winters have occasional cold periods of brief duration with daily temperatures near zero in January and February. Annual precipitation measures around 50 inches, but the range may vary considerably from this average. Snowfall occurs in the forest covering the ground from a few hours to occasional extended periods of up to several days.

Please place camps well away from creeks and tributaries. Showers can be locally heavy and occasionally have been known to produce 5 to 10 inches of rain in a few hours. Such storms will cause flooding in the rivers and tributaries of any or all of these wilderness areas. These same streams will usually be dry in the late summer and early fall. Carry water or a water filtration device with you into the wilderness.

The five wilderness areas span nine counties and three Ranger Districts, providing a wide variety of plant and animal life.

Please follow wilderness ethics and "Leave No Trace" guidelines while visiting the Wilderness Areas.