Boondocking Discussions on dry camping
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Old 10-11-2010, 09:57 PM   #1
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Default Where do you go????

OK being new to the rv owners club, where do you go boondocking? Just find a place in the woods? Get shot at by the land owner? A little help from the guys here in PA, where do you go? State Park tent sites? Or is this something that I have to travel into New York for? West Virginia maybe? How do you find these places? Tent camping you just hike back a trail for a few miles and viola! But it's a little different towing 26 feet of trailer? Wal Mart is out....
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Old 10-12-2010, 12:04 AM   #2
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Well, I don't know if the same rules apply in the east, or in California, but generally out west, in less populated states, we have what is called "dispersed camping on public land." Dispersed means you can set up a tent or trailer camp virtually anywhere outside of a specified campground except where you you'd be causing a public hinderance or hazard. Public land refers to any state public land (Idaho in this case), BLM lands, US Forest Service land, National Recreational Land (like the Sawtooth National Recreation Area). There are a few exceptions to the above statement, such as designated Wilderness Areas, military bases, and nuclear test and research sites (and who'd ever want to camp there). Since Idaho is about 70 percent public land, we have a ton of dispersed camping.

In Idaho, you can take your trailer across private land via Sportman Access routes and find some terrific sites along rivers, etc. Some of these sites even have concrete fire rings. Rules for dispersed camping pretty much universally state that you must pack out everything you take in. That means, of course, not leaving the contents of your grey or black water tanks, not leaving any trash or wet garbage behind (not even buried). Nobody polices these sites except the users, so there is no trash pick-up, no dump sites, no water pumps or spigots or power boxes, no bear boxes, etc. No, you can't legally clear a timber stand to make a parking space, but you can pick up slash and other fallen trees for firewood, fire conditions permitting.

During EXTREME fire danger periods, the USFS, BLM, or whoever may limit or prohibit dispersed camping in the affected areas.

Check out the following website: http://www.rv-camping.org/Boondocking.html

Even though I've written about western policy, I hope it gives you some ideas for your area.

Jim
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Old 10-12-2010, 08:33 AM   #3
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Thanks! I didn't even know where to look. We have many state parks but most have designated camping. There are a few national parks that I can look into. This is a great start, thanks again...if not I guess I'll just have to camp in Idaho....Yee Haw!! Road trip!!
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Old 10-12-2010, 10:25 AM   #4
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The US Forest Service operates a large number of campgrounds too. They have picnic tables, fire pits and usually toilets (the "pit" kind), and often, but not always, potable water.

Here's a link I use a lot: Federal recreation, camping and tour reservation information - Recreation.gov I THINK you can find information on campgrounds that are not set up for reservations here too.

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Old 10-12-2010, 12:33 PM   #5
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Check out Allegheny National Forest, they may have some areas there. If the Rainbow People can go there and set up for a month it must be boondocking area. We own 100 acres in northern Clarion County where we go, in fact, we will be going this weekend for the last family campout.
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Old 10-12-2010, 12:40 PM   #6
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Sweet! I did find five sites down here in the state forest. I'm even going to try to steak out a couple of good state park primitive sites that I can get my rig into.
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Old 10-12-2010, 12:49 PM   #7
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Cool Vannoch, here we have a boondocking area in the state refuge area and grass lands that is just for boondocking.
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Old 10-12-2010, 01:09 PM   #8
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SD! Sounds like another road trip......Yahoo!!!!!!
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:30 PM   #9
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I would recommend Cherry Springs State Park near Coudersport, PA. Pennsylvania State Parks - Cherry Springs Dark Skies - PA DCNR

I camped there earlier this month. If you like to view the stars, this is an excellent location. Cherry Springs is an International Dark Sky Park.

There are about thirty camping sites available, all primitive. There are flush toilets on the astronomy field side of the park. Reservation are not permited.
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thankful View Post
I would recommend Cherry Springs State Park near Coudersport, PA. Pennsylvania State Parks - Cherry Springs Dark Skies - PA DCNR

I camped there earlier this month. If you like to view the stars, this is an excellent location. Cherry Springs is an International Dark Sky Park.

There are about thirty camping sites available, all primitive. There are flush toilets on the astronomy field side of the park. Reservation are not permited.
Now that is awesome! I will definitely be going there. Jeanine and I were talking this weekend about the stars, there were clear nights both nights. Thanks!
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Old 10-12-2010, 08:37 PM   #11
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Now that is awesome! I will definitely be going there. Jeanine and I were talking this weekend about the stars, there were clear nights both nights. Thanks!
Two of the three nights that I was there were clear or partially clear.

Here is a link for an astronomers forecast for up to two days in advance.
Cherry Springs State Park Clear Sky Chart

Here is a link to print out a sky map.
Skymaps.com - Publication Quality Sky Maps & Star Charts

Take along a flashlight with a red lens. That will help your eyes to stay adjusted to the darkness. You can buy them at Walmart or I bought one at Home Depot that has a red LED and white LED all in one flashlight.

Send me a PM if you have any questions.

I hope you have a great time.
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:25 PM   #12
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Ditto regarding Cherry Springs State Park. We were just there last Saturday evening for a free night sky program put on by one of the DCNR Rangers. It was new moon and clear skies which made for an absolutely unbelievable laser guided program! This location is one of the two most preferred night sky sites in the US with virtually no light pollution. The other site being in Arizona. I promise that you've never seen the milky way or constallations like you can see them there during prime conditions. And, you should see all the out of state astronomers on a special field with extreme telescopic equipment.

Actually, we were at Lyman Run State Park checking out sites when we ran in to the Ranger thst put on the program at Cherry Springs and decided to drive about 12 to 15 miles for the program. We were so very glad we did.

Rich mentioned Allegheny National Forest which is huge in NW part of the State. We have a cabin near Ridgway in Elk Co. that borders the ANF and I know many folks use campers at remote locations during the hunting seasons.

Hope to run in to you PA guys one day, Vanooch, Rich and Thankful!

Regards,
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:38 PM   #13
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Ya c'mon we need a meet and greet here in PA. Has anyone planed a trips together? I was just telling my wife that I'd like to head out there at the end of the month or early in Nov. Anyone game? Of course she thinks I'm a little obsessed with camping in the new trailer......naaaa.
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:08 PM   #14
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Meet and greet sounds good. But, we need to first get a few campground trips under our belt before we try any boondocking trips. Perhaps next spring or Summer? The next couple months are likely to be busy hunting with my Grandson.... He's obsessed with hunting!

cheers,
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Old 10-16-2010, 04:14 PM   #15
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A meet and greet wouldn't have to a boondocking trip per say, I'm just anxious to try it!
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Old 10-18-2010, 06:28 PM   #16
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We just got back from our boondocking weekend on our property near Cook Forest State Park, we had a fine time. We had two Hi-Lo's and a Trailmanor set up. It was up to 60 during the day and down to 37 at night. We probably burned a full cord of wood but we stayed warm. On Sunday morning there were two bald eagles munching on a dead deer in the field across the road from our camping spot.
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Old 04-09-2015, 07:19 PM   #17
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I've only tried this for Colorado but this site has all states.
freecampgrounds.com
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Old 05-27-2015, 10:20 AM   #18
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We're in CA, but we go camping in Sequoia/Kings Canyon NP a lot and there are no hookups in the park. There are lots of places you can camp without hookups. You don't necessarily have to be out in the woods or in the backcountry.
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Old 05-28-2015, 06:43 PM   #19
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I just found this excellent website for those interested in boondocking. These folks are fulltimers since 2007 who never pay for camping. Tons of info of places to camp, travel logs, and the nuances of boondocking:

http://roadslesstraveled.us/
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