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The Sawtooth National Forest is a beautiful and popular destination for camping. With endless trails, picturesque landscapes, and stunning views, it’s no surprise that camping is a favorite activity for many visitors. However, it’s important to remember that when enjoying the outdoors, you need to also preserve the wild spaces.  Camping etiquette is not only required to preserve and protect the land we love, but also when sharing outdoor spaces with others.  Let’s talk camping etiquette.

Pack it in/Pack it out

It’s always important to pick up after yourself and leave your camping surroundings as clean as possible to preserve the environment. This means leaving no trace – pack everything out that you pack in, dispose of trash and food waste properly, and avoid damaging vegetation and wildlife habitats. It’s always good practice to leave a site better than you found it! 

Keep Noise to a Minimum

Follow quiet hours and respect the peace and privacy of fellow campers. It’s essential to be courteous and keep campground music, and noise levels to a minimum according to the rules and facilities’s guidelines.


Be aware of your pets if you are bringing them along. If you do have pet companions, be sure to keep them on a leash and clean up after them in line with Leave No Trace protocols. Trailhead signage is your best source for seasonal dog-on-leash rules so take the time to read up before taking off on your trail. 


Respect campfire rules and policies of the specific zones and up-to-date alerts, as some areas may prohibit fires due to weather conditions and/or potential threats. Keep the sites that allow dedicated fire pits as clean as possible with no litter, and avoid building new fire pits, and/or dismantling fire rings/pits.


Many of the trails in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area enter into designated wilderness. Understand the rules and regulations while in wilderness areas. Mechanized and motorized equipment are not allowed. Practice all Leave No Trace principles to preserve the wilderness character of these areas. 

When camping in the Sawtooth National Forest, it’s essential to keep in mind certain rules and practices of camping etiquette while enjoying it. By keeping sites clean, respecting others’ space and privacy, keeping pets on a leash, and complying with fire regulations, you will enjoy a lower impact  and more gratifying stay in these beautiful spaces.

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