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  1. Default Dispersed camping in Minnesota

    I am trying to find some new places to dispersed camp in Minnesota. I know it is no fun to give away your favorite spots, but could anybody give me some general areas they go. We've camped on old logging roads in state forests, and it was a lot of fun (Savanah state forest). But are there other great tips anyone around MN or WI has?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Hi.

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    Sorry I can't help directly with your question but I wanted to welcome you. Here is one Thread with a list of campgrounds which may come in handy. Good luck with your search


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Central Missouri

    Default A little more info might help

    The camping forum thread that SWDave linked goes to the US Highways. It might help if we knew you want to be close to US-2, US-61, etc.

    The vast majority of dispersed camping sites are in state and national forests. You'd have to go to the individual state/national forest service page and go from there. When I was doing the research for the camping forum, I was looking for public campgrounds, rather than the dispersed sites, though I found a few which I linked. Even some campgrounds linked could match the requirements of dispersed camping, as they had no amenities at all. You were expected to bring your own everything and pack it all out.

    US-2 campsites


    Great River Road



    Last edited by DonnaR57; 08-15-2023 at 07:09 AM. Reason: added links

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Minnesota does have some dispersed camping options, but it's certainly far more limited than out west.

    The Superior National Forest is going to be your best bet within Minnesota, although there are also some other state forests that do allow it. The real key to finding a spot is to make sure you get a good, detailed, map of the forests. There is quite a lot of private land intermixed around the national forest, so it's important to make sure your campsite actually is on a public spot.

    Personally, my favorite dispersed camping in the area is in Michigan's UP. Both the Ottawa and Hiawatha National Forests have dispersed camping sites available. They are individual sites (or sometimes 2 or 3 sites) pre-selected as spaces to camp. They are still free, but precleared to reduce the impact on the environment, and may even have very basic amenities like a fire ring or even a pit toilet. I've found some great spots that way.

    And my standard reminder anytime I discuss dispersed camping: Dispersed camping is fantastic - you have privacy and it's free - but doing it right is actually a lot of work. Obviously, that includes packing out all of your trash and properly caring for human waste, but ideally leave no trace should mean you can't even tell that someone even camped there.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada


    Well said. Excellent advice

  6. Default

    How's these camping spots in Minnesota?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Those are all fine campground, and since many of them are walk-in, they would usually be more secluded and available - although since some of their recommendations are regular state parks, they will have to be reserved in advance online and can fill up far in advance.

    Those places are also significantly different than dispersed camping that you first asked about.

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