Backcountry: Designated Campsites

Free backcountry permits are required for overnight use of all seven of our backcountry camp areas. Our backcountry sites are listed from north to south. Each of them provide different experiences and have very different pros and cons. More detailed information for each site is provided and linked below.

During COVID19, our permit operations have temporarily moved online until we can return to issuing permits at our visitor centers. In summer 2020, the number of backcountry permits may be reduced to meet health standards and best practices.
 

Backcountry Camps NORTH of the Klamath River

 
Grassy meadow with trees and a fire pit.
Forest and meadows at Little Bald Hills Camp.

LITTLE BALD HILLS CAMP (5 sites, horses and bikes allowed)
CLICK HERE for DETAILS and MAPS

  • Location: Redwood National Park
  • Trailhead: Marked trailhead is on short access road off Howland Hill Road
  • Mileage to campground: 3.3
  • Difficulty Level: Strenuous, gradual 1,800 foot rise in elevation
  • Description: Fire pits, bear proof lockers, toilet, picnic tables, non-potable water spigot, horse trough, and corral. Free backcountry camping permit required. Bring drinking water. Climb through old-growth forest to open prairies fringed by fir and pine trees
 
Forest and brush lines a walking trail.
Brush and trees on the trail to DeMartin Camp.

DeMARTIN CAMP (10 sites)
CLICK HERE for DETAILS and MAPS

  • Location: Redwood National Park
  • Trailhead: Marked north access is on east side of Hwy 101 at mile marker 15.6. Marked south access is opposite of Wilson Creek parking area.
  • Mileage to campground: From north access, 3.4. From south access, 3.5.
  • Difficulty Level: Moderate, some steep grades and switchbacks.
  • Description: Picnic tables, bear-proof food lockers, fire pits, and toilet. Bring your own water. No ocean views because of the growing trees. Free backcountry camping permit required

 

Backcountry Camps SOUTH of the Klamath River

 
Three picnic tables and alder trees
Flint Ridge picnic tables.

FLINT RIDGE (8 sites)
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  • Location: Redwood National Park
  • Trailhead: Marked west access is on the Coastal Drive. Marked east access is across from the Old Douglas Memorial Bridge site at junction of Alder Camp and Klamath Beach Road.
  • Mileage to Campground: From west access, 0.25 miles. From east access, 4.5 miles.
  • Difficulty Level: Easy from the west. East access is strenuous and climbs approximately 800 feet.
  • Currently closed
  • Free backcountry camping permit required.
 
A grassy, open area with a picnic table and trees. Fog hides much of the distant view.
Hike and bike site at Gold Bluffs Beach.

GOLD BLUFFS BEACH Hike and Bike site (1 site available accommodating up to 2 separate groups/permits, 8 backcountry campers maximum per night)
CLICK HERE for DETAILS and maps.

One "Hike/Bike" site located behind sites #19 and #20 at the Gold Bluffs Beach Campground has been designated as a backcountry campsite. A backcountry permit is required, available online)

  • Location: Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park
  • Trailhead: Hikers: There are several different access points for this camp, the shortest being about 4.5 miles from Elk Prairie via Miners Ridge Trail. Inquire at any visitor center for trail recommendations and current conditions. Bicyclists: Access is only from mile marker 132.9 on Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway (via Ossagon Trail -> Coastal Trail - Gold Bluffs Beach Section -> Davison Road) or Davison Road.
  • Mileage to campground: Hikers: Depending on which access you choose, one-way mileage is a minimum of 4.5 miles via Miners Ridge Trail. Bicyclists: About 6 miles, one way, via Ossagon Trail -> Coastal Trail - Gold Bluffs Beach Section -> Davison Road; or, 5.3 miles via Davison Road from Elk Meadow.
  • Difficulty Level: Moderate hike, some steep grades with switchbacks.
  • Description: One site within this developed campground has been redesignated for use by backcountry users only. Up to 2 groups and 8 campers allowed. Picnic table, food locker, firepit, and barbecue grill available, as are water, restroom, and solar shower facilities (quarter operated) shared by all campground campers.
  • Parking: Overnight parking for trail access is available only in the designated parking area across Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway from the Prairie Creek Visitor Center or Elk Meadow (near start of Davison Road). Overnight parking is not allowed on the Newton B. Drury Scenic parkway.
  • Fee: $5 per person/per night camping fee required, payable on arrival at campground.
 
Picnic tables and fire pit
Picnic tables at Elam Camp.

ELAM CAMP (3 sites, horses allowed)
CLICK HERE for DETAILS and MAPS

  • Location: Redwood National Park
  • Trailhead: Tall Trees Trailhead (additional permit required for access road, summer only), Redwood Creek Trailhead (summer only) or Orick Rodeo Grounds

  • Mileage to campground: 7 miles from the Tall Trees Trailhead, 3 miles from the Redwood Creek Trailhead or 6 miles from the Orick Rodeo Grounds. Several loop options for horses on the Orick Horse Trails.

  • Difficulty Level: Moderate to strenuous
  • Description: Located in the Redwood Creek area, walk through old-growth redwoods to camp. Picnic tables, bear proof lockers, fire pits, toilet, non-potable water (treat from creek), and a corral. No more than 12 stock animals are permitted. Free backcountry permit required.
 
Picnic table and fire pit next to trees
44 campsites.
  • Location: Redwood National Park
  • Trailhead: Tall Trees Trailhead (additional permit required for access road, summer only), Redwood Creek Trailhead (summer only) or Orick Rodeo Grounds.
  • Mileage to campground: 3 miles from the Tall Trees Trailhead, 7 miles from the Redwood Creek Trailhead or 12 miles to camp from the Orick Rodeo Grounds.
  • Difficulty Level: Moderate to strenuous
  • Description: Located in the Redwood Creek area, walk through old-growth redwoods to camp. Picnic tables, bear proof lockers, fire pits.
  • No water.
  • Free backcountry permit required.
  • NO toilets available. Campers must use Leave No Trace ethics by digging a suitable cathole and packing out all used toilet paper.
 
 
A smooth flowing creek runs between banks of tall trees. Three hikers are walking on gravel.
Hikers walk along the edge of Redwood Creek.

Photo: Dave Van de Mark

REDWOOD CREEK - Dispersed Camping (Max of 50 people allowed per night)
CLICK HERE for DETAILS and MAPS

  • Location: Redwood National Park
  • Trailheads: Tall Trees Trailhead (additional permit required for access road, summer only), Redwood Creek Trailhead (summer only), or Orick Horse Trailhead.
  • Mileage: 2 miles to area allowed to camp on the Tall Trees and Redwood Creek Trailhead and 6.5 miles on the Orick Horse Trailhead.
  • Difficulty Level: Moderate to strenuous.
  • Description: Located along a stretch of Redwood Creek, the gravel bars offer the only area in the parks where dispersed camping is permitted. Dispersed camping is allowed anywhere on the gravel bars between the first seasonal bridge (1.5 miles from trailhead) and no closer than ¼-mile (½-km) of the Tall Trees Grove.
  • Winter Camping (December-May): Redwood Creek runs high and fast during the winter with unexpected flows and rising water. Gravel bars are rarely available for camping. Foot bridges across the creek are removed in September and are not installed for the summer until late May. Before planning your trip, check current conditions.

Last updated: October 5, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

1111 Second Street
Crescent City, CA 95531

Phone:

(707) 464-6101

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