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Hoosier National Forest Dispersed Camping Map

Camping Near You Find A Free Campsite

Hoosier National Forest Solo Camping (Dispersed Camping, Overlanding, Setup, and more!)

Whether you just need to know where to camp nearby or you want to plan a free camping road trip, we’ve got you covered. You can simply use your smart phone’s GPS to find camping near you or even use our trip planner to plan your route from coast to coast.

Our community provides the best free camping information available. Free campgrounds can be hard to find. makes it easy. We give you a simple, map based search engine to find free and cheap camping areas. Community reviews and ratings provide you with up to date information and help you select the best camp site for your next camping trip.

This is a platform for sharing campgrounds and camp sites you have discovered. We are community driven, and while we will be adding many free camping spots, we hope that you will add some of your favorite camping places as well. By sharing camping information freely, we can all spend less time researching campgrounds, spend less money, and more time camping. If everyone contributes a few campsites, we’ll all have more places to go camping.

Please come back and let us know what you find!

We are not actively seeking Wal-Marts, truckstops or other parking lots and will not be adding very many of these. There are enough Wal-Mart and truck stop directories out there already. However, if a member of the community finds one of these locations to be useful for overnight RV parking and creates an entry, we may approve the listing.

Please come back and let us know what you find!

Where Can You Find Free Dispersed Camping

Free camping, or dispersed camping, is allowed in all national forests, unless noted otherwise. You can find places to camp on the side of main roads, or follow forest access roads to more remote sites. Theres also the option to backpack in for several miles and find a quiet site away from any roads or people. These sites are available on a first-come, first-serve basis and cannot be reserved in advance. If youre in a pinch you can use the offline maps and campgrounds of The Dyrt PRO to find the BLM land near you.

The general rule is to camp 100-200 feet away from any road, trail, or water source. If a previous campsite is visible, using that site will minimize impact to the area.

Free Indiana Camping Spots

Indiana is rich with natural treasures waiting to be found, with approximately 200 days of sunshine a year, 4.7 million acres of woodland, and innumerable stunning rivers, dunes, lakes, and caves. One of the finest ways to see them is to go camping in Indiana!

In Indiana, primitive camping is legal and free in public locations such as the gorgeous state forests. Camping is also a cheap and easy way to enjoy the scenery in the Hoosier State, as there are some free campsites alongside hiking routes in state parks and woods.

Indiana provides wild camping, as well as guidelines and where to find Indiana camping spots. As well as where to find inexpensive Indiana RV parking. So take your tent and prepare for starry evenings and breathtaking views.

There is nothing better than camping, in our opinion. Its your chance to get back to basics, reconnect with nature, and disconnect from the stresses of modern life. It also allows you to enjoy some of natures most beautiful sights for free.

The great thing about free Indiana boondocking is that free camping is permitted as long as you stay on state property and follow a few basic rules. State-owned land will be managed by the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service, the United States Forest Service, and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources . Any areas that are green on Google Maps are usually public property. Just keep in mind that there are a few places in Indiana where free camping is prohibited.

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Is Boondocking Legal In Indiana

Indiana, like many states, allows boondocking in approved areas. One of the best places is Hoosier National Forest in south-central Indiana. You can boondock practically anywhere in the national forest, as long as your vehicle doesnt block developed trails or roadways.

However, you cant boondock in campgrounds, parking areas, day-use areas, boat launches, or any other area with signage indicating no camping.

Finding a campsite can pose a challenge as many roadside spots in the national forests arent mapped. You should only camp in already established sites, and you must stay within 125 ft of the road. Though, you should have no problem finding them if you travel to the most popular sections of the national forest.

Pro Tip:Check out these national forests that are better than most nation parks.

Free Camp Sites In Missouri

Hoosier National Forest Dispersed Camping / Hoosier National Forest in ...

Indian Trail Conservation Area This location can fit RVs up to 45 feet in length and while just a very basic place to camp its right b the Mark Twain National Forest and has hiking and fishing.

Bismarck Conservation Area A well-maintained camping area near water and a boat dock. Each site has picnic tables, a fire pit, and a grill.

Daniel Boone Conservation Area This camp area can fit RVs up to 30 feet in length and is also well maintained near the Missouri River and close to wineries!

Total National Forest Acreage: ~9 million

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Despite calling itself the Land of Enchantment, New Mexico is a tragically underrated state where the secret to finding said enchantment is to stay off of the freeway towns and explore its many national forests.

The Gila National Forest is a personal favorite, particularly the whirlwind juniper drive through US 180, options like the lonesome, wide-open Cattleman Trail will introduce you to the elusive Continental Divide Trail hiker and just get out there, youll dig itApache Creek are some of the highlights. Cosmic Campground is a designated dark sky sanctuary, but there doesnt tend to be a lot of light bleeding into any campsite in Gila National Forest. Silver City is the anchor town here, a more laid-back, small town version of artsy New Mexican villages like Santa Fe and Taos.

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Disclosure: Opinions Camping Practices And Experiences Expressed With Articles Posted Here Or Otherwise Via User

The Rise in Designated Dispersed Camping

Thereâs nothing quite like camping in the great outdoors. And while some campers prefer the amenities that can be found at a developed campground, which can range from flush toilets, showers and RV hookups to even swimming pools, playgrounds and other deluxe amenities, others prefer the freedom, solitude, adventure and spontaneity to be found in dispersed camping. In some cases itâs about necessity. With the increase in required reservations at state and national park campgrounds, sometimes dispersed camping is the only option available.

Dispersed camping, also known as primitive camping or boondocking, refers to camping outside of a developed campground on public land. There are no amenities or services available, but then there are also no fees. Dispersed campsites are usually first-come, first-serve, with no need for reservations. It used to be that you could camp just about anywhere dispersed camping was allowed on public lands, with a few limitations, like how far away from the road and how close to waterways your campsite could be, along with limits on length of stay, noise and lighting, whether or not fires are allowed and an adherence to the Leave No Trace principles. With national forests spanning 192 million acres and BLM managing 245 million acres across the United States, or about 20% of the country, thatâs a lot of land.

Areas where camping areas have been closed or have moved to dispersed camping :


Upper Teton View Wyoming

There are almost 200 sites that offer free camping across Wyoming. Upper Teton View Toppings Lake Dispersed Campsites are popular due to their proximity to the Teton Range. Its advised to try to get to the area in Bridger-Teton National Forest , located in Moose, early due to the sites popularity.

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Hoosier National Forest Dispersed Camping

The family and I are looking to head to the Hoosier National Forest the second weekend of June and I’m hoping to find a dispersed camp site to use and maybe some forest roads to explore. Does anyone know of any dispersed camp sites and/or fun forest roads? I will have a 3 and 1 y/o in the Jeep so nothing to crazy. I’ve downloaded the motor vehicle use map and have some ideas for forest roads to try but was hoping to hear from someone who has been there. I’ll be coming from south west Indiana so I’m look at the southern part of the forest but I am open any area if it’s recommended. Thanks in advance for the help.

Hoosier National Forest: A Guide For Camping Hiking And Rving In A National Forest

Free Camping Hoosier National Forest

The Hoosier National Forest comprises about half of the public forest lands in Indiana. It provides a diverse mix of opportunities and resources for enthusiasts to enjoy. The forests vast size plays a crucial role in enhancing biological diversity on a regional scale, covering over 200,000 acres in nine counties of Indianas south-central area.

This woodland is a popular choice for many enthusiasts like mountain bikers, amateur and veteran hikers, campers, and RVers because of its sheer vastness and beauty, which will relieve stress and provide an escape from the noisy, bustling streets of the urban city.

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Everything You Need To Know About Dispersed Camping In National Forests

Dispersed camping in national forests is a great way to save money on your outdoor adventures. But it also protects more popular places from overcrowding and damage . Similar to backpacking, youll have to be self-contained and you almost definitely wont have nearby neighbors.

That being said, dispersed camping in national forests typically means parking at a primitive campsite or in a pull-off, just off of a forest access road. So unlike backpacking, you will have your car nearby and you wont have to hike far to set up camp.

If youre interested in exploring a wilder side to camping, this is a good first step. Dispersed camping in national forests might become your new favorite way to sleep outside.

Mogan’s Ridge East Trail

Mogan’s Ridge East, Hoosier National Forest Mogan’s Ridge East, Hoosier National Forest Almost fall colors at Mogan’s Ridge East, Hoosier National Forest
Pate Hollow Trail, Hoosier National Forest Fall colors along Pate Hollow trail, Hoosier National Forest Pate Hollow, Information at trail head, Hoosier National Forest Lake Monroe, from Pate Hollow Trail, Hoosier National Forest Shag bark hickory, on of my favorites, Pate Hollow Trail, Hoosier National Forest

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Research Your Campsite Ahead Of Time

Whenever you camp in a national forest, its imperative that you research your potential campsite ahead of time. No two campsites are alike in any given national forest, so you definitely dont want to assume that a given campsite will have specific amenities, like electrical hookups, water, or even a fire pit.

If youre staying at a campground or a cabin, you should definitely take the time to read any and all information you can find about your destination online. Most ranger offices are also happy to answer any questions you might have about your potential campsite before your trip, so feel free to give them a call if you cant find the information you need on a national forests website.

Enjoy Hidden Gems While Camping For Free In Indiana

Hoosier National Forest Dispersed Camping / Hoosier National Forest in ...

Youll find much more than corn and cows in Indiana. During the summer and fall, you can enjoy some fantastic sunsets and views of nature all over the state.

Some camp locations are so untouched they practically give you a glimpse into what the area would have looked like hundreds of years ago. While many rush out west to find epic boondocking spots, you have some great options in the midwest as well.

Whats your favorite free camping spot in Indiana?

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Patton Cave / Grubb Ridge Loop

Patton Cave / Grubb Ridge LoopKey Features:

The first 2 miles of the Grubb Ridge Loop trail are clear and wide, Hoosier National Forest Working up the draw to the entrance of Patton Cave, Hoosier National Forest Trails in the Deam Wilderness are clearly marked, Hoosier National Forest Spring entrance to Patton Cave, Hoosier National Forest Exploring Patton Cave, Hoosier National Forest

What Can I Expect From Dispersed Campsites In National Forests

Dirt. Trees. Bugs. Views. What more can you ask for?

Free camping in National Forests, or dispersed camping, is about enjoying nature without all the fuss and clutter of amenities, like toilets, showers, and fire pits.

This means you need to arrive fully self-sufficient, and prepared to clean up after yourself thoroughly.

If youre in bear territory, remember that dispersed camping wont come with bear lockers. Bring odor-proof storage for your food, and store food away from your camp.

Since youre camping in a place that hasnt been altered for camping, it typically wont be as flat or clutter-free as traditional campsites. If youre pitching a tent, youll probably want a sleeping pad for added comfort.

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How To Reserve National Forest Campsites

If you want to stay at a reservable campsite in a national forest, there are a number of ways to make a reservation.

The easiest way to make a reservation for a national forest campground is to go to This is the governments website for making reservations for campsites and cabins at most federally managed outdoor recreation areas, including national parks, national forests, and national monuments. is primarily used to book campgrounds on federal land. However, some national parks and forests with designated backcountry campsites also use to process backcountry campsite reservations and permit lotteries.

To reserve a campsite at a national forest campground, do the following:

  • Type in the name of a national forest or a specific campground.
  • Choose a campground from your search results.
  • Review all of the available information about the campground, including the information under the Facility Information, Fees & Cancellations, and Seasons & Bookings tabs.
  • Enter a check-in and a check-out date to find available campsites for your trip. You can limit your search by site type or by available amenities .
  • Scroll through all of the available campsites in the availability grid.
  • Select an available campsite.
  • Log in to your account.
  • Enter your personal information, group size information, and number of vehicles.
  • Review your campsite reservation.
  • Enter your payment details to finalize your booking.
  • Free Indiana Boondocking Camp Sites

    Hoosier National Forest- Solo Camping Trip (12/15/20)

    Indianas parks are popular among outdoor enthusiasts, from the sandy bluffs and hundreds of lakes in the north to the limestone caverns in the south. Peaceful days on the river and hundreds of miles of isolated trekking are just a short drive away in a state distinguished by its love of automobiles. You wont have to travel far to locate your retreat, so come explore the Indiana camping spots!

    Its easy to discover the perfect place to stay with over 30 state parks and a national forest nearby. Summer evenings are a terrific time to get the family together outside for a weekend away, and campers appreciate choosing the finest area to visit in the fall for the gorgeous autumn colors.

    Escape to Indianas White River, which meanders for more than 200 miles among sandstone bluffs that rise from the rivers banks. The White River is popular with locals and tourists alike because of its excellent fishing chances and wealth of animals. Its the perfect excuse to take a day off from work and go camping in Indiana, with over 12 different areas of the river to explore.

    The bird watching and calm views of Indianas riverways will appeal to nature lovers camping in Indiana. Call ahead to arrange for an outfitter to take you to the best fishing spots on the river. Adventurers may want to go it alone, thanks to a comprehensive river guide available online.

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    Hikers Paradise: Hoosier National Forest

    The Hoosier National Forest is quite popular because it has many trails that an enthusiast can enjoy. It is a hikers paradise because of the beautiful forest one can enjoy while hiking and the number of paths campers can enjoy. Heres a quick list of the available hiking sites that you can enjoy when you get to the Hoosier National Forest.


    Dispersed Camping & Backpacking

    Dispersed camping is technically defined as camping anywhere in a national forest outside of a designated campground. While many people think of dispersed camping and backpacking as the same thing, not all dispersed campsites are located deep in the backcountry.

    Every national forest is different, but you can generally dispersed camp along roads away from developed areas, so long as you are more than 100 feet from a water source. If youre camping along a road, many national forests require that you keep your vehicle within 150 feet of the road to prevent plant damage.

    This type of dispersed camping is popular among off-roaders, RVers, and van lifers as it gives you a free way to spend the night in a national forest without the need to carry your gear deep into the wilderness. But, you need to be self-sufficient when you dispersed camp and you need to know about any rules and regulations that are unique to a specific national forest.

    Backpacking is another type of dispersed camping where you spend the night away from developed areas and roadways.

    Every national forest has its own rules about backpacking. But most allow you to camp more or less wherever youd like so long as youre more than 200 feet from a road, trail, or body of water.

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