Camping and Picnicking opportunities on the Salmon-Challis National Forest

Release Date: May 14, 2014  

Contact(s): Amy Baumer 208-756-5145


SALMON, ID - The Salmon-Challis National Forest offers 87 campgrounds, two (2) cabin rentals, and one (1) lookout to meet a variety of overnight experiences.  Amenities vary from site to site, providing opportunities from back-country "roughing it" to group camping to historic guard stations with comfy beds.

Campgrounds:  Forest visitors can select from almost 87 campgrounds with fishing, hunting, hiking or other outdoor activities nearby. All Salmon-Challis National Forest campgrounds are available on a first-come-first served basis.  Group campsites at Bonanza and Loristica and a portion of the Boundary Creek campground take reservations via recreation.gov website. Campgrounds may charge an overnight where improved facilities and services are provided.

Dispersed Camping:  Forest visitors may camp outside of developed campgrounds in most areas on the Salmon-Challis National Forest, up to 300 feet from an open road, at no charge.  Potable water, toilets, and other amenities are not generally available. If you choose to camp outside developed areas, Please use the Forest Motorized Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs) to ensure that the area you want to use is available for motorized access.  Be sure to bring adequate water or be prepared to purify any water source before drinking.

Picnicking:  The Salmon-Challis National Forest is perfect place to spend the day picnicking in the great outdoors.  Picnicking provides people with the opportunity to have a picnic or barbecue with friends and family or a place simply to relax and enjoy the sounds and scent of nature.  Forest visitors are more than welcome to set out a blanket and picnic the old fashioned way.  Some picnic table within campgrounds are available to picnickers, as well. 

Starting in 2014, there are some changes in campground fees on the Salmon-Challis National Forest.  Please refer to the list below for changes: 

Challis-Yankee Fork Ranger District:  Custer #1 and Flat Rock Extension campgrounds are now $5.00 per night.

Middle Fork Ranger District: Boundary Creek and Dagger Falls Campgrounds have increased from $5.00 to $10.00 per night.

Lost River Ranger District:  Iron Bog, Park Creek, Phi Kappa and Starhope campgrounds have increased from $5.00 to $10.00 per night.

North Fork Ranger District: Corn Creek, Spring Creek and Twin Creek campgrounds have increased from $5.00 to $10.00 per night.  Use for the Twin Creek Group Picnic Site is now $20.00 

The Salmon-Challis National Forest has made numerous upgrades to these sites such as improved sanitation, parking, fencing and water systems over the past four years.  The fees will be used for facility improvements and continued maintenance at campgrounds across the forest. 

“We recognize how important these sites are to our local communities and those who use the sites,” said Trish Callaghan, Salmon-Challis Forest Recreation Program Manager.  “Our goal is to maintain the sites to the level and quality people have come to expect.” 

Further information about camping and picnicking opportunities on the Salmon-Challis National Forest is located on the forest website: http://www.fs.usda.gov/recmain/scnf/recreation; or by contacting the Public Lands Center in Salmon at 208-756-5100.

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