Camping On BLM Land

If you’re looking for an outdoor adventure, consider camping on BLM land. BLM land is public land that the Bureau of Land Management manages. It’s a great place to camp, hike, bike, OHV, and explore! Here we share how to camp on BLM land safely and enjoyably. 

What Is BLM Land?

BLM land is public land that the Bureau of Land Management manages. The BLM manages over 245 million acres of public land, which is about one-eighth of the total land in the United States. These lands are located in 12 Western states, including Alaska.

The United States Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is an agency of the federal government that manages public lands. The BLM strives to maintain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for future generations to use and enjoy. They accomplish this by managing such things as recreation, livestock grazing, minerals, and energy.

The History Of BLM Land

The Bureau of Land Management was created in 1946 when the General Land Office and the U.S. Grazing Service were combined. The BLM was created to manage the nation’s public lands.

The first director of the BLM was William P. Cottrell, who served from 1946 to 1947. Cottrell oversaw the transfer of over 16 million acres of public land from the Department of the Interior to the BLM.

Today, the BLM is managed by a director who is appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

 

What Is BLM Camping?

BLM camping is camping on public land that the Bureau of Land Management manages. This type of camping is a great way to experience the outdoors and enjoy the many activities that BLM land has to offer. There are many different types of BLM campsites, from primitive campsites with no amenities to developed campgrounds with RV hookups. There is also dispersed camping on BLM land that many rv’ers take advantage of.

 

How To Choose A BLM Campsite

When choosing a BLM campsite, there are a few things you should consider:

  • The number of people at your party:

You will need to find a campsite that can accommodate your entire party. If you have a large group, you may need to find a group site.

  • The type of camping you want to do:

Are you looking for a primitive campsite with no amenities or a developed campground with RV hookups?

  • The length of your stay:     

Camping stay limits vary by location but are generally about two weeks within a month period.                                                                                                                                                                                             

  • How far you want to travel:

You will need to consider how far you are willing to travel to get to your campsite. BLM land is located in 12 Western states, so you will have plenty of options to choose from!

How To Camp On BLM Land

Dispersed Camping on BLM Land

Dispersed camping means no campground amenities like electricity, water, or garbage service. There are no camping fees for dispersed camping either. If your rig is set up for off-grid camping then a dispersed campsite is just what you need. The Leave No Trace rule is very important when you camp on BLM land so clean up your site, and pack out your garbage.

This type of camping is generally allowed on public land for a period not to exceed 14 days within a 28 consecutive-day period. Dispersed camping on BLM land limitations may vary per office, please check with the local office for details.

Dispersed campsites are located along most secondary roads and may not be marked.  Popular locations can be recognized by the telltale flat disturbed area that has been used as a campsite before. Not all flat spots are sites. If possible, please use existing sites to avoid creating new disturbances.

Here are a couple of websites to help you find BLM-dispersed camping spots. The BLM.gov site is loaded with information, and another handy resource is Off Grid Essentials.

How To Camp On BLM Land Safely

When camping on BLM land, there are a few things you should keep in mind in order to stay safe:

  • Be aware of your surroundings:

When you are setting up your campsite, be aware of your surroundings. Look for things like dead trees that could fall, or steep cliffs that could be dangerous.

  • Check with your local BLM office:

Before you camp on BLM land, it is a good idea to check with your local BLM office. They will be able to tell you about any restrictions or permits that may be required for camping in your area. They will guide you about potential hazards in the area, and can also give you a map of the area.

  • Stay on marked trails:

When hiking or biking on BLM land, stay on marked trails. This will help you stay safe and avoid getting lost.

  • Don’t leave food out:

Bears and other animals are attracted to food. If you leave food out, you could attract unwanted visitors to your campsite.

  • Be prepared for emergencies:

Make sure you have a first aid kit and a plan for what to do in case of an emergency.

  • Follow Leave No Trace principles:

When camping on public lands like BLM land, it’s important to follow Leave No Trace principles. This means packing out all of your trash, respecting wildlife, and being considerate of other campers. By following these principles, you can help keep BLM land beautiful for everyone to enjoy!

 

How to find BLM land to camp on

The easiest way to find BLM campgrounds is to go to the BLM website. Once you are on the website, you can use the search tool to find BLM land in your state. The search tool will allow you to narrow down your results by things like location, activities, and amenities.

When you have found a few BLM campsites that you are interested in, you can use the map tool to help you find them. The map tool will show you where the BLM land is located and how to get there.

 

What to do on BLM land

There are many different things you can do on BLM land. Some of the most popular activities include camping, hiking, fishing, and hunting. There are also many opportunities for OHV recreation, such as biking, ATVing, and four-wheeling. You can also find BLM land that is perfect for horseback riding.

No matter what your interests are, you are sure to find something to do on BLM land!

 

How To Make A Reservation

If you want to camp on BLM land, you will need to make a reservation. Selecting a campsite is usually on a first come first serve basis. Some campgrounds do require reservations which can be made at recreation.gov.

You will also need to pay a fee when making your reservation. Prices vary by site.

 

How To Cancel Or Change A Reservation

If you need to cancel or change your reservation, you can do so by going to the BLM website or by calling the BLM office. You will need to provide your name, address, phone number, and the dates you will be camping.

There is a service fee for canceling or changing a reservation. This fee is non-refundable.

 

How To Check In And Check Out Of A Campsite

When you arrive at your campsite, you will need to check in with the BLM office. You will need to provide your name, address, phone number, and the dates you will be camping. When you depart please check out at the BLM office.

Camping fees vary so please check the BLM website for all the details. This fee is non-refundable.

Camping on BLM Land Dispersed

How To Camp On BLM Land – RV hookups?

  • The length of your stay:

You will need to find a campsite that can accommodate your entire party. If you have a large group, you may need to find a group site.

  • The type of camping you will be doing:

If you are planning on doing any activities that require a lot of gear, such as hiking or fishing, you will need to find a campsite that has enough space for all of your gear.

  • The amenities that you want:

If you want to be able to camp with your RV, you will need to find a campsite that has RV hookups.

  • The time of year:

Some campsites are only open during certain times of the year. You will need to make sure the campsite you want to stay at is open during the dates you are planning to camp.

  • The location:

You will need to decide how far you are willing to travel to get to your campsite. Keep in mind that the further away you are from civilization, the more remote your campsite will be.

 

Conclusion

BLM camping is a great way to experience the outdoors. In this article, we explored different aspects of How To Camp On BLM Land. We covered topics such as finding a campsite, making a reservation, and what to do on BLM land. We hope this article was helpful and that you are now ready to go camping on BLM land! Thanks for reading!

Have you ever been camping on BLM land? Share your experience in the comments below!

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