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Camping at Umatilla National Forest Campground

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Umatilla National Forest Campground Overview

Umatilla National Forest sprawls across the Blue Mountains of southeast Washington and northeast Oregon. With its diverse landscapes, ranging from arid river valleys to high elevation forests, the campgrounds in Umatilla National Forest offer a rich experience for campers.

Important Camping Information

Campground Options

Multiple campgrounds are available in the Umatilla National Forest. They can vary in size, services, and accessibility. Some popular campgrounds include Olive Lake, North Fork John Day Campground, and Jubilee Lake Campground.

Reservations and Fees

Some campgrounds operate on a first-come, first-served basis, while others accept reservations. Check the availability and booking options via the Umatilla National Forest website or through third-party reservation systems like Recreation.gov. There are fees associated with camping which vary depending on the site and the time of year.

Site Amenities

Amenities can range from basic to well-equipped. Typically, campgrounds will have:

  • Picnic tables
  • Fire pits
  • Vault toilets
  • Drinking water (not available at all camp sites)

Utility hookups are usually not available, meaning that the campgrounds are more suitable for tents and self-sufficient RVs.

Campfire Regulations

Due to the risk of wildfires, campfire regulations can be strict. It's essential to follow the forest's guidelines, which may include bans during dry periods. Always check for current fire restrictions before lighting a campfire.

Access and Roads

Access to some campgrounds may be limited by snow or weather conditions, particularly outside of the summer months. The condition of access roads can vary greatly; some may be suitable for all vehicles, while others may require high-clearance or four-wheel drive.

Seasons and Weather

The Umatilla National Forest campgrounds are typically accessible from late spring through fall. However, the camping season can vary depending on elevation and weather. Be prepared for cool temperatures at night, even during the summer.

Activities

The Umatilla National Forest offers numerous recreational activities, including:

  • Hiking
  • Mountain biking
  • Fishing
  • Wildlife viewing
  • Horseback riding
  • Off-road vehicle trails

Wildlife

The forest is home to various wildlife species. Always store your food and trash securely to protect wildlife and maintain safety at your campsite.

Leave No Trace

Adherence to Leave No Trace principles is crucial for maintaining the natural beauty and health of the forest. Campers should take all their trash with them and leave their site cleaner than they found it.

Additional Information

  • Pets are usually allowed but must be kept on a leash.
  • Gather firewood only from downed and dead timber; do not cut live trees.
  • The use of drones requires adherence to FAA rules and may not be allowed in certain areas.
  • Always tell someone your camping plans and expected return time.

Emergency Contact Information

  • Umatilla National Forest Supervisor's Office: (541) 278-3716
  • 24-hour emergency response (local sheriff or 911)

For the most current and detailed information, always refer to the Umatilla National Forest's official website or contact the forest supervisor's office. Conditions and regulations can change, and it's crucial to have up-to-date information for a safe and enjoyable camping trip.

Location of Umatilla National Forest Campground
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