Free camping in National Forests have been some of our favorite camping experiences. Referred to dispersed camping, National Forests offer primitive camping opportunities to those looking to get away from crowded campgrounds. On our long drive from Ohio to California, we made it a point to stop at our favorite dispersed camping spot outside of Flagstaff, Arizona. In this video, we discuss how we find free camping in National Forests.

Free Camping in National Forests – Dispersed Camping

The best way to find dispersed camping is to visit the nearest local forest office. Ask for guidelines on dispersed camping in that particular National Forest. Then grab a copy of the Motor Vehicle Use Map to locate all available dispersed camping area.

Additional Resources

US Forest Service – search for the National Forest you want to camp in to find dispersed camping guidelines and motor vehicle use maps for that area.

Allstays Camp & RV App – turn on filter for “Public Lands” to find dispersed camping in the area you want to camp.

Freecampsites.net – a community driven website where users share free camping spots they’ve discovered.

Campendium – this website has a specific National Forests section. Turn on the “free” filter to narrow down search results.

You can also find free camping in National Forests we’ve discovered by searching for “dispersed camping” in the search bar of this website. Our two favorite experiences have been outside the Grand Canyon South Rim and near Flagstaff, Arizona.