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Free Camping Near Bend Oregon

Alder Springs Campground Bend

3 Best Free Camping Near Bend Oregon #VANLIFE | FnA Van Life

Alder Springs Campground is a first-come, first-served campground that sits in Willamette National Forest. Its just off the historic McKenzie Pass Highway. The massive Douglas fir trees help provide privacy for campers.

If you enjoy hiking, the Linton Lake Trailhead is just across the highway from the campground and gives you access to the 1.9-mile Linton Lake Trail. However, there are plenty of user-made trails that arent maintained once you reach the end of the official trail. This is an excellent place to check out when its hot outside. Cooling off at the waterfalls is a great way to end a hike.

Where To Find Free Camping In Oregon

Most of the Oregon free camping spots are dotted across public lands, which include areas like National Forests, Bureau of Land Management lands and wilderness areas. Savvy searchers wont have to travel far to find for free camping on Oregon public landsabout 60 percent of the state is made up of public lands, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. If youre in a pinch you can use the offline maps and campgrounds of The Dyrt PRO to find the free public lands near you.

The beauty of dispersed camping, besides costing absolutely nothing, is that you wont need to make reservations. These campgrounds are almost always first come, first served. Additionally, as camping on public lands is typically not a crowded affair, Oregon free camping has a chance to offer glorious solitude and welcome peace and quiet amid gorgeous natural scenery.

Not all campgrounds on public lands are free, however, so some research is required to plan your trip. To make things a bit easier for you, weve come up with the best places for free camping in Oregon from real camper reviews on The Dyrt.

Sand Island Marine Parknear Portland Or

This is an excellent Oregon free camping spot on kayaking trips. Sand Island is a man-made island in the Columbia River just northwest of Portland that offers primitive free camping, as well as short nature trails and grassy areas for picnics. If youre on a multi-day kayaking excursion, you can resupply in St. Helens, a short stroll from the camping area.

Accessible by boat or kayak. Sites are primitive, no tables. This is on the Columbia River water kayak trail. The Dyrt camper Daniel L.

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Scandia Rv & Mobile Park

Just south of Bend along US-97 is Scandia RV & Mobile Park with nightly and monthly rates. They have three sections with full hookup RV sites that are often full throughout the summer months. Call ahead early to make reservations, especially if you want one of their 14 pull-through sites.

Their basic amenities include WiFi, cable, and laundry facilities. Restaurants are within walking distance and the Bend Factory Outlet stores are less than a mile away.

Scandia RV & Mobile Park. Photo by Coopsecondact

Pine Mountain Campgrounddeschutes National Forest

Free Camping near Bend Oregon

Located at the summit of Pine Mountain in the Deschutes National Forest, this campground lies near the Pine Mountain Observatory, one of Oregons best places for stargazing. Pitch your tent or park your RV at one of the six first-come, first-served campsites .

Entrance is free. The sites are strung through the trees and overlook the badlands of Central Oregons High Desert. Cool temps in summer. The Dyrt camper Richard L.

Also Check: Solar Power Packs For Camping

Cook Creek Campsites Nehalem

Cook Creek Campsites are in a state forest that sits in the town of Nehalem. The road is narrow and a little bumpy but navigable if you take your time. This is a hidden Oregon gem that offers several designated free camping sites off the road.

Its important to note that as of August 2021, Cook Creek Road closed at the four-mile mark. So if youre planning to stay here, youll want to make sure you choose a site before reaching this point.

The reviews for this site are slim, but only because it hasnt hit the radar for many boondockers. Once other boondockers discover the waterfalls, caves, and many areas to explore while camping here, its sure to gain popularity.

Free Camping Sites Washington And Oregon

*Updated for 2020

Camping is so popular for families here in the Northwest and generally a very affordable way to visit new places. If you are looking for something very budget-friendly & affordable, did you know that there are actually a number of places that you can camp for FREE around the Northwest?

There are a number of public lands that do offer camping at no cost they may not have many services like water or flush toilets, but if you can rough it a bit, you can find some great, out of the way spots. Most of these are available on a first come, first serve basis, but if you are a bit adventurous, it does not get more affordable than free.

Also, here in the Northwest, the most popular time for camping is of course in the summertime, but many locations will open up their sites with free or reduced rates once the busy season has passed, so those are great options as well.

Read Also: Tent Camping Near Gainesville Fl

List Of Best Bend Or Camping Spots

  • Sparks Lake
  • I hope you enjoyed this list of the best campsites in Bend, Oregon.

    Choose from lake camping, mountain camping, camping in volcanic areas, desert camping in Bend, river camping, forest camping, and so much more, Bend has it all!

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    Until next time,


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    Bonney Meadow Campgroundmount Hood National Forest

    Free Camping 10 Minutes Outside of Bend Oregon #MapItMonday | FnA Van Life

    In addition to popular Mount Hood National Forest campgrounds like Trillium Lake and Lost Lake, theres also amazing free Oregon camping in the same area. At Bonney Meadow, six individual campsites and horse corrals cater to self-sufficient hikers, mountain bikers and horseback riders. Sites can accommodate vehicles of maximum 16 feet in length.

    This awesome untrafficked campground is perfect for people who really want to get away from people. Its often mostly empty and sits on the edge of a stunning meadow. The Dyrt camper Leaha W.

    Read Also: Best Camping In Dc Area

    Barnhouse Campgroundochoco National Forest

    Set in a ponderosa pine forest a few miles from the main highway through the Ochoco National Forest, the Barnhouse campground is wonderfully tranquil and serene. There are six campsites with fire pits, grills and picnic tables, some of which can accommodate vehicles up to 25 feet.

    This is truly a great little campground! It is first come first serve as they require no fee. Tucked away in the hills and the woods, with numerous hiking trails from the campground to explore the surrounding areas. It is quiet and a great way to see the Painted Hills that are close by. The Dyrt camper Katy T.

    Mineral Camp Campgroundumpqua National Forest

    Image from The Dyrt camper TJ B.

    This tiny campground along Sharps Creek in Umpqua National Forest is open year-round and has three individual campsites surrounded by towering Douglas Firs. There are fire pits, picnic tables and vault toilets, but no drinking water or garbage disposal.

    This is a very small remote campground past Dorena lake near Bohemia Mountain. If you can luck out, or go in the off season, this is a nice far out spot, off the beaten path to just relax by Sharps Creek. I liked how this place is small and more primitive than others, while still being a legit campground. The Dyrt camper TJ B.

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    Getting To And Around Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway

    Flying | There is an airport in Redmond, but flights dont really go there from many places outside of Oregon. The international airport in Southern Oregon is Medford International Airport. Look for flights from your location to MFR , although fair warning prices for flying into Medford are a bit more than Portland. Portland is probably the best option for flights, and will honestly probably be the cheapest place to fly into. This is the search engine we use when booking flights. Eugene, Oregon sometimes has random good deals flying into their airport too!

    Rental Cars | If youre not from the area or dont have your own car, youll want to rent a car to get drive Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway. Public transportation in Oregon is a joke, so renting a car is certainly your best bet! No need to rent a big off roading vehicle for any of these campgrounds on Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway, we accessed them all with a 2004 Dodge Neon, !

    Training | Klamath Falls, Oregon offers the only train stop in the area with the Amtrak trains. You can train to Klamath Falls from places all up and down the west coast and then rent a car from there to explore Central Oregon. The drive from Klamath Falls to Central Oregon is really pretty, so its not a bad place to train into!

    Lake Billy Chinook Cabins

    The Best Places To Go Camping Near Bend, Oregon

    Billy Chinook Lake is stunning, and the Cove Palisades State Park is a good option for camping near Bend Oregon and the lake. The park as more than 200 campsites, some of which have RV hookups.

    However, if you want something a little more luxury, you could always book one of the deluxe, lakeside cabins which can sleep up to 8 people.

    There are two main campgrounds in the park, the Crooker River Campground and Deschutes Campground, both of which are surrounded by nearly 10 miles of hiking trails, boat rentals, and the towering cliffs that surround the unique Lake Billy Chinook.

    Price: tent site $20, electrical $30, deluxe cabin $87 | More Info: Website

    RELATED: 21 of the Coolest Cabins in Oregon

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    Free Campsites For Big Bend National Park

    Big Bend National Park has a beautiful and serene environment that has been surrounded by ancient nature and blessed by mother nature with the Chisos mountains. Big Bend allows people to enjoy various animals and plants that enhance its beauty. The variation of the desert temperatures gives the park a unique feeling. Viewing the existence of plants in the park enables one to appreciate the work of nature and view life positively. Read on to learn more about Big Bend and the reasons why you should plan to visit.

    Three Creek Lake Campgrounds

    Why you should stay: Camp near amazing hiking options on the footsteps of the Cascades.

    • Reservations accepted: Yes
    • Best seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall
    • RV hook-ups: No

    Three Creek Lake resides east of Bend in the shadow of Broken Top Mountain. Youll get there by heading south from the town of Sisters, and the drive through the gorgeous Cascade Range will leave your jaw dropped and have you itching to get onto the trail.

    Comprised of Three Creeks Campground, Driftwood Campground, and Meadow Campground, this seasonally-accessible area around the lake has 18 campsites and a few horse campsites, all of which are mostly first-come-first-served, though several can be reserved ahead of time.

    Three Creeks Lake is open to non-motorized boating and swimming. Campsites are quite rustic, but still cost $14 per night. No potable water or RV hookups exist on premises, though there are pit toilets and fire rings.

    Enjoy the lake and explore the dirt roads in the area which connect to a series of hiking and off-road vehicle trails. From the campground, the five-mile out-and-back Tam McArthur Ridge Trail gains 1,200 feet of elevation toward a breathtaking view of Broken Top Mountain and The Three Sisters.

    Adventurous folk can continue onward to No Name Lake and beyond to complete the 24 mile Broken Top Loop Trail which circles around the gargantuan mountain.

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    Free State Park Camping Oregon

    While state parks typically charge a fee to stay within their grounds and utilize camping spots, a few groups are exempt from this charge.

    The state offers special camping passes to U.S. veterans with a service-related disability or active military on official leave. This pass allows for free parking and free camping in Oregon state parks, including RV sites, campsites, and horse campsites.

    Additionally, several parks within the Oregon state park system will sometimes offer free yurts and cabins for groups of underrepresented campers such as people of color, disabled campers, and those who identify as LGBTQ.

    Badlands Rock Dispersed Bend

    FREE camping in Bend Oregon – Road Trip USA

    This secluded spot near Bend is easy to navigate, even for larger rigs, and can provide tons of privacy. Youre far enough from the highways that youll fall asleep to the sounds of nature. With decent cell phone coverage from all major cell phone providers, you can stay as connected as you like while still enjoying the beauty of the Oregon landscape.

    If youre looking for an easy-to-navigate area, theres a gravel lot. What you gain in convenience, youll lose in privacy. However, if youre looking for a quiet place to camp for a few nights, this could be a great pick.

    Keep in Mind:You can increase a weak cell signal with these cell phone booster options.

    Read Also: Camping Near Painted Hills Oregon

    Resources For Free Campsites:

    We have just featured a highlight of free campsites that are found across the Northwest in Washington & Oregon, but there are many more that are available. Here are some of the resources we found for finding free campsites in the Northwest for you to see if there are more options in an area you want to check out.

    Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife Lands This is a great resource as its an official state resource with information about a variety of lands, including areas that are available for camping. Just pick a region, county or area to start checking out whats available in those areas.

    Bureau of Land Management Website This is another official resource for BLM lands. You can select camping as an option to search & then the area & it will give you a list of places to camp you will then need to go thru & find which ones are free.

    Campendium Website features free campsites for across the country including listings for Washington & Oregon plus reviews from readers who have gone to these campsites. This is more of a community-driven website, so you may want to try to confirm these locations with another website such as the WDFW Lands website.

    Free Campsites.Net This is another site that is community-driven, with reader reports & reviews, but Id encourage you to also try to confirm these with another website such as the WDFW Lands website.

    Fort Stevens State Park

    Known for its size, amenities, and range of things to do nearby.

    Fort Stevens State Park has to be one of the largest Oregon state park camping spaces in the state, with almost 500 camping sites available. It is located way up in northwest Oregon, with the campsites set out in two huge loops.

    There is plenty to see and do in the immediate vicinity such as visiting the incredible remains of the Peter Iredale shipwreck that sits on the beach.

    Price: Tent $22, RV $32, Yurt $48-$58, Cabin $93-$103

    More info:Website

    Fort Stevens is a converted military space, and you can find out more about this in the Military Museum.

    Recommended Reading: Schnebly Hill Road Dispersed Camping

    Loon Lake Lodge And Rv Resort

    Great for the range of amenities available at a reasonable price.

    If miles of stunning, open water is what you are after, then look no further than Loon Lake. These Oregon state campgrounds offer a range of sites, all set on comfortable grassy knolls.

    The park offers a huge range of amenities, including boat rentals and a convenience store so that you can stock up on all the camping necessities. The Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area is very close, which is a fantastic place to explore.

    Price: $18-$70 dependant on location and hookups

    River Rim Rv Park Llc

    Free camping near Bend, Oregon ...

    Image Source:

    If you have never sat out under the stars on the rim of a mighty river, youre missing out. This is exactly the type of experience that you can have at River Rim RV Park. The park is settled right close to the Cascade Mountains with an amazing view of Central Oregon, and youll enjoy seeing golden eagles, rabbits, deer, and maybe even the mysterious mountain mouflon sheep.

    Also Check: State Park Rv Camping Cost

    Rufus Landing Recreation Areacolumbia River Gorge

    Image from The Dyrt camper Karina J.

    If youre traveling along the Columbia River and need a place to stop east of The Dalles, the Rufus Landing Recreation Area is a convenient boondocking and dispersed camping site. Managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, it has no designated sites but is rather a huge gravel parking area, meaning tent campers might have to plan to snag spots before RVers do.

    Just because its a straightforward camping site doesnt mean it doesnt offer amenities, though. There are restrooms available just a short walk away, and theres a hiking access down to the Columbia River.

    This campground is a simple gravel lot for drop-in camping. No fire pits or reserved spots. If youre going to a show at Maryhill or just need a place to crash along the highway this is a great spot. Has restrooms and river access! The Dyrt camper Karina J.

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