Bartoo Island Group Site/Campgrounds

Area Status: Open
This area is Open
 

Bartoo Island Group Site:

This group campsite, also known as Sunrise Group Site, is a rustic group camping area on Bartoo Island, only reachable by boat. Surrounded by the clear waters of Priest Lake, Bartoo Island Group site provides the ideal getaway for groups of 10 to 30 people, looking for a rugged, but highly rewarding camping experience on the peaceful shores of Priest Lake.

Natural Features:  Priest Lake spans 25,000-acres of incredible beauty, fed primarily by the waters of the Priest River. Named after the historical presence of Jesuit priests who settled in the lake area in the mid 19th century, Priest Lake is today a major tourist attraction, drawing water sports enthusiasts, photographers and birders alike. The group campground is located on the east side of Bartoo Island at an elevation of 2,400 feet. Bartoo, spanning 219 acres, is one of nine islands on Priest Lake. Summers at the lake are typically sunny and warm and wildlife in the area includes bears, deer and moose.

Recreation: Visitors enjoy all types of boating from kayaking to canoeing to power boating up the 3.5-mile thoroughfare, which leads to the Upper Priest Lake Scenic Area. The upper lake cannot be access by car, so water is an excellent navigation option. Fantastic birding and wildlife viewing is available, as well as Huckleberry picking from mid-july to early fall, when the sweet berries can be found in abundance throughout the forests of Northern Idaho. Swimming is a popular summer pastime and with beach access not far from the campground, visitors won't have any problem cooling off during warmer months. Anglers will be excited to know that the waters of Priest Lake are home to record-breaking Mackinaw trout as well as Dolly Varden, Cutthroat and Kokanee.

Facilities: Campers are required to bring their own portable toilets to this campground.  No drinking water is available and this is a pack it in, pack it out facility. Picnic tables and campfire rings are provided.

Nearby Attractions: Hike the Lakeshore or Beach Trails that traverse along the west shore of Priest Lake. The Beach trail extends between Outlet Bay Campground and the Kalispell Bay Boat Launch. The Lakeshore Trail runs for 8 miles along the northwest shores of Priest Lake. In winter, ice fishing, shoe shoeing and snowmobiling on nearby trails entertain visitors.

Other Sites on Bartoo Island:

  • Lone Pine - Day use (6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.) west side of island (vault toilet).
  • Cedars - 1 camp unit, north end of island (portable toilet required).
  • North Bartoo - 4 camp units, north end of island (portable toilet required).
  • Solo 2 - 1 camp unit, west side of island (potable toilet required).
  • South Bartoo - 7 camp units, south end of island (portable toilet required).
  • Bartoo Solo - 1 camp unit, south end of island (portable toilet required).
  • West Sunshine - 3 camp units, east side of island (portable toilet required).
  • Sunshine - 5 camp units, east side of island (vault toilet).

Note that all of these sites are accessible by boat only, have a Pack it In, Pack it Out policy on all waste, and have no developed water systems. *NEW* Reservations for this campground now have a 60/40 split between reservable sites and “First-come, first-served” sites, respectively. Information is available on Recreation.gov.

Map of campsites on Bartoo and Kalispell Islands

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Refer to Recreation.gov for latest updates.
Priest Lake Ranger District 208-443-2512
Reservations: There is a mix of first-come-first serve and reservation sites. Check the status of sites and make reservations at Recreation.gov. Reservations must be made 2 days ahead of arrival and can be made up to 12 months in advance.
Open Season: Late May - Late October
Restrictions: Pets must be leashed at all times. No glass bottles are allowed on the beaches. No bathing or washing dishes in the lake. Quiet hours are from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. No fireworks. 14 day camping limit. Maximum of 10 people per site Check-out time is 2:00 p.m Campsite must be occupied first night. Bring your own portable toilet Site is accessed by boat only No drinking water; please bring your own water Bring garbage bags; this is a "pack in-pack out" facility Be bear aware; keep all food out of sight in approved containers or locked inside your vehicle and remove all food from area after eating  
Closest Towns: Priest River, Idaho
Water: Supplied at Kalispell Bay Boat Launch.
Restroom: Vault toilets or required portable toilets (see map).

General Information

Accessibility:

 Accessible boat ramp within 10 miles


Directions:

GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
48.55111, -116.86556
48°33'4"N, 116°51'56"W

Campground is only reachable by boat. Travel north from Priest River, Idaho on State Highway 57 to various boat launches around the lake. 

To access the Kalispell Bay Boat Launch, travel on Highway 57 for 31 miles to Kalispell Bay Road. Turn east (right) until you reach West Lakeshore Road. Head south .5 miles to the boat launch.


Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Activities


Camping & Cabins

Hide detail HIDE

Campground Camping

Attractions include scenic 25,000-acre Priest Lake, motorized and non-motorized boating, swimming and fishing opportunities.

Fire Information Established fire pans at each site. Fires must remain in pan, and extingished when unattended.
No. of Sites 23 camp units
No. of Accessible sites

Group Camping


Water Activities

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Areas & Activities

Location

 
  Latitude : 
48.543949

  Longitude : 
-116.878938

  Elevation : 
2400 feet

 



https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/ipnf/recreation/camping-cabins/recarea/?recid=6773&actid=29