Dispersed Camping Recommended Sites
There are several notable dispersed camping areas, listed below. Some allow open camping, while others allow camping only in designated campsites. Help keep these areas open and accessible to everyone: follow the rules listed on the Motor Vehicle Use Map when driving in the forest (essentially, cross-country travel in a motorized vehicle is prohibited), and always drown campfires out cold to the touch.
Flagstaff Ranger District
Call Flagstaff Ranger District for more information. 928-526-0866.
- (area is unavailable): Dispersed camping in designated campsites. The area is very popular and fills up quickly.
- Wing Mountain: Excellent and easily accessed dispersed camping for vehicles of all sizes along FR 222 and FR 171 in the Wing Mountain area. The area is close to Snowbowl Road and US 180, with several popular trails recreation sites nearby, making this an excellent alternative to Freidlein Prairie Road.
- Ashurst Lake: Just before the top of the hill on the way to the lake.
- Pumphouse Wash: Dispersed camping in designated sites along the southeastern end of FR 237 in the Pumphouse Wash area south of Kachina Village. This is a very popular area, particularly with large groups. (Download the FR 237/Pumphouse Wash Dispersed Camping Guide [PDF].)
Red Rock Ranger District
This Sedona Area Camping Pamphlet has information about dispersed camping as well as campgrounds and cabins on the Red Rock District.
Additional dispersed camping information is listed below.
- Childs, near Fossil Creek, is a popular spot on the Verde River.
- Lawrence Crossing on Wet Beaver Creek: located at the end of FR 618G.
- West Sedona Designated Dispersed Camping & Day-Use area
This Forest Order has been put in place prohibiting dispersed camping and campfires in the 32,130-acre area that makes up most of the national forest in west Sedona. This is to keep campers within the eight designated areas and from creating dispersed campsites along the forest roads that negatively impact the land and can lead to trespassing on private land.
Call the Red Rock Ranger District for information. 928-203-2900.
Mogollon Rim Ranger District
Call Mogollon Rim Ranger District for information. 928-477-2255.
- Jack's Canyon Camping and Climbing Area: popular spot. See photographs on the web page.
- Gooseberry Springs (Google Maps): a beautiful area (no facilities).
- Knoll Lake: popular dispersed camping areas nearby.
- C.C. Cragin (Blue Ridge) Reservoir: popular dispersed camping areas nearby.
Exceptions: Areas Closed to Dispersed Camping
Several areas are closed to camping and campfires. Some of the most popular areas are listed below. See Forest Orders for information and maps of these and other closures.
- West Sedona: This Forest Order has been put in place prohibiting dispersed camping and campfires in the 32,130-acre area that makes up most of the national forest in west Sedona. This is to keep campers within the eight designated areas and from creating dispersed campsites along the forest roads that negatively impact the land and can lead to trespassing on private land.
- Sedona and Oak Creek Canyon: The Red Rock District prohibits dispersed camping within the "pinkish-salmon" colored boundary shown on the Red Rock Country recreation map (JPG, 2.1 MB). Obtain a current copy of this map at a Coconino National Forest Ranger Station or office. This Sedona Area Camping Pamphlet contains maps of recommended dispersed camping areas around Sedona. 928-203-2900.
- Stage Stop, which is located on Highway 179 approximately on mile south of Beaverhead Flats Road and the Highway 179 junction. It is approximately 2 miles north of the junction of Highway 179 and I-17.
- Mormon Crossing/Springs: the closure area is west of the Page Springs Road (County Road 134) and west of the fish hatchery and school. It is often accessed via FS 796.
- Fossil Creek Area: the Fossil Creek Area recreation map and regulations (PDF, 1 MB) outlines areas where camping and campfires are prohibited.
- FR 237 and Kelly Pocket Area: between SR 89A and I-17 south of Kachina Village, except in specific sites along the southwestern end of FR 237 (PDF, 910 kB).
Back to Dispersed Camping Guidelines