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Camping at Cougar Crossing Campground

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Cougar Crossing Campground is a popular camping destination located in the Willamette National Forest in Oregon. It provides visitors with a scenic environment along the South Fork of the McKenzie River, combined with the chance to enjoy outdoor recreational activities such as fishing, boating, and hiking.


The campground is situated near the Cougar Reservoir and is accessible by car. Be prepared for the drive as remote forest roads can sometimes be narrow and winding.

Camping Facilities

  • Campsites: The campground usually offers several tent and RV sites, although it is best to check if there are any sites designated for RVs.
  • Water Access: Freshwater sources are available, but it’s advisable to carry your own.
  • Restrooms: There are typically vault toilets available.
  • Picnic tables and fire rings: Most sites have these facilities.

Campground Rules

  • Fire Regulations: Campfires are often allowed in designated areas, but it’s important to follow the current fire restrictions and regulations due to wildfire risks.
  • Pet Policy: Pets are typically allowed but should be kept on leashes.
  • Quiet Hours: Campgrounds usually enforce quiet hours, often from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
  • Stay Limit: There is typically a maximum stay limit, commonly 14 days.


  • Water Recreation: Boating, kayaking, and fishing in the nearby reservoir are common activities. Make sure to follow any local regulations regarding water safety and fishing licenses.
  • Hiking: Nearby hiking trails provide a chance to explore the Willamette National Forest, including the famous Three Sisters Wilderness.
  • Hot Springs: Cougar Hot Springs (also known as Terwilliger Hot Springs) is located nearby and offers a relaxing experience.

Reservation and Fees

  • Advance Booking: You can usually reserve a site in advance, but some sites might be available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
  • Fees: There is likely a fee for camping that varies depending on the site and facilities. Check current rates and make payments through the official reservation system or at the campground if applicable.

Environment Considerations

The Cougar Crossing Campground is in a sensitive natural setting requiring all visitors to follow Leave No Trace principles, which include packing out all trash, respecting wildlife, and leaving what you find.


Accessibility for individuals with disabilities can vary. It’s recommended to consult recent visitors' reviews or contact the Willamette National Forest Ranger District office for the most current information on the accessibility of the campground's facilities.

Weather and Seasonal Considerations

  • Best Time to Visit: Summer and early fall are generally the most popular times to visit due to favorable weather conditions.
  • Weather Variability: Mountain weather can be unpredictable; always be prepared for sudden changes and cooler temperatures, especially at night.

Before visiting Cougar Crossing Campground, it’s important to check the most recent information with the Willamette National Forest for any updates on conditions, closures, and regulations. Enjoying the great outdoors comes with a responsibility to preserve and protect the natural environment for future visitors.

Location of Cougar Crossing Campground
Other Campgrounds in Willamette National Forest
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