Recreate Responsibly: Camping
Welcome to Camping Season!
It's summer and camping is on! Here are some important know-before-you-go tips before heading out.
The popularity in camping has increased greatly over the last year, so consider hopping onto Recreation.gov to make a reservation. You can book a site up to six months in advance.
Some campgrounds are all first-come, first-serve, and others sometimes have a few such sites available. If you are planning to try, know that the early bird often gets the worm: The farther out from a weekend you arrive, the better the chance of grabbing a spot.
Having a campfire is one of the best parts of camping, but knowing where and when you can have it is very important to protect the forest from severe wildfires.
If you're in a developed campground or yellow post site, campfire rings are provided and can be used when fire restrictions allow. If you're dispersed camping, a traditional wood campfire is never allowed. Instead, you can use a portable propane campfire ring, provided fire restrictions allow and you have a California Campfire Permit.
Fire restrictions change throughout the year based on weather and vegetation conditions, so make sure to check if they have changed before you head out.
Dispersed, or undeveloped, camping provides more solitude and an opportunity to “rough it" in general forest areas. It's important to tread lightly when taking part in this activity.
Vehicles must stay on roads and pullouts, wood campfires are not allowed (see above), and if you are using a tent, you must find a spot clear of vegetation to put down your tent.
We ask that you camp at least 200 feet from springs, water, meadows, trails and roads, at least a quarter-mile from designated campgrounds, picnic areas, trailheads developed private property and state highways. As always, pack out all of your trash.
Camping lightly on the land keeps the forest healthy and enjoyable for all visitors.