The Sacramento District Review – February 2013

In this Month’s Issue:
What is Dispersed Camping?
Evening Lecture Series
Kids Corner
The Sacramento District Review is a monthly newsletter prepared by the Sacramento Ranger District of the Lincoln National Forest.


What is Dispersed Camping?

-Marcie Kelton

Dispersed Camping near Bluff Springs

Once in a while we need to escape to the great outdoors and leave behind the everyday routines of our busy lives.  Many visitors enjoy the solitude and primitive experience of dispersed camping (camping away from developed campgrounds).  Dispersed camping offers a more rustic experience with no amenities, such as trash removal, and little to no facilities, such as restrooms, tables or fire pits.

Before you head out to your favorite dispersed camping site, it is important to keep in mind that there is additional responsibility and more preparation needed for this type of experience.

Regulations are in place to ensure that every visitor has a safe experience and that the natural resources remain scenic and unspoiled for other campers.

To make sure that you and other visitors have the best experience possible, know before you go:

-A permit is required for groups of 75 or more people.

-You may camp on the forest for up to 30 days in a 45 day period.

-Campsites should be at least 200 feet from streams or other water sources.

-Keep a clean camp and follow the “Leave No Trace” guidelines. The district office can provide you with handouts and more specific information regarding these guidelines.

-Be Bear Aware. There are bears on the Lincoln National Forest, so please plan to camp accordingly.

-Dogs are fun to bring to the forest, but please remember to keep them on a leash out of respect for the wildlife and other campers.

-Do not drive in meadows to access your campsite. Stay on existing roads and keep motor vehicles within 300 feet from a roadway to prevent resource damage.

-Do not try to level or dig trenches in the ground at your campsite. Pick a tent site that is already level with good drainage.

-When setting up a tent, look for an area with healthy trees and no dead limbs.

-There are typically no bathrooms or outhouses, so extra care must be taken in disposing of human waste.  Dig a hole six inches deep and at least 200 feet away from any water source. When you are done, fill the hole with the dirt you dug up and please remember to take your toilet paper with you.  Never defecate or leave toilet paper on the ground.

-Use only dead and down wood for campfires.  A permit is not needed for wood burned while on the forest.  Do not cut trees or branches from standing trees for fuel wood.  Leave all plants, shrubs, trees, and standing snags undisturbed to preserve a sense of naturalness.

Dispersed camping on the LNF

Campfires are one of the pleasures of camping in the Lincoln National Forest.  No matter what time    of year, people need to be careful deciding when and where to build a campfire.

Plants, soil and wildlife are impacted by new campsites, so using existing ones will minimize your impact.  If there is not already a ring in place, an area may be cleared for a ring of rocks about two feet in diameter.

Be sure to contact your local Forest Service office to inquire about any campfire restrictions that may be in place.

Human-related activities are one of the leading causes of wildfires every year. Many start from abandoned campfires that were not properly put out.

You should have a bucket, shovel, axe and plenty of water available to control or extinguish a fire. Please take the time to completely put out your campfire, it could prevent a wildfire.

A healthy, beautiful forest is something we all want. Have a fun and memorable experience and remember to take care of YOUR National Forest.

Please call our district office at (575) 682-2551 for more information regarding dispersed camping on the Lincoln National Forest.

The groundhog plays a little game.
(Woodchuck is his other name.)
If he finds no shadow here,
Spring is very, very near.
But if he sees his shadow small,
Winter isn’t done at all,
And back into his hole he’ll creep
For six more weeks of winter sleep.

By Margaret Hillert

If apples were pears
And peaches were plums
And the rose had a different name.
If tigers were bears
And fingers were thumbs
I’d love you just the same.




Evening Lecture Series

Please join us on Saturday, March 16th at Cloudcroft High School for our first lecture of 2013 hosted by the Sacramento Ranger District Fire Managers.

The evening will begin at 4:00 p.m. with a presentation on the wildland fire partnerships between federal, state and local agencies in Otero County.

The public is invited! Agency representatives will be available to answer questions regarding wildland fire collaborative management efforts between agencies.

We have a great line up for the 2013 lecture series and hope you can plan on joining us the second Thursday of each month at the Sacramento Ranger District office at #4 Lost Lodge Road off of Hwy 130 in Cloudcroft.  Please look for more information on upcoming lectures in our next newsletter.

For additional information please contact the District Office at:  575-682-2551.


Kids Corner

By J. Fink

Stop by our office to pick up this Smokey Bear Valentine’s Day coloring page OR go to our website

and print it out! 


Drop off or mail us your finished artwork and we will hang it in the lobby!

Sacramento Ranger District

Attn: Jennifer

P.O. Box 288

4 Lost Lodge Rd.

Cloudcroft, NM  88317

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