Dispersed camping has increased throughout the Flagstaff wildland urban interface in the past several years. In many areas, this has caused resource impacts such as soil compaction and erosion, loss of vegetation, increased fire risk, displacement of wildlife, and accumulation of trash and human waste.
To help prevent unacceptable resource damage, disturbance to wildlife and reduce fire risk from dispersed camping, the Forest Service has designated 14 campsites along the Freidlein Prairie road for dispersed camping.
Camping and campfires are allowed only at designated sites along Freidlein Prairie Road. There is a map in the area showing site locations.
All designated campsites along Freidlein Prairie (FR 522) are located on the south side of the road, with the exception of campsite #1 and #3. Signs have been placed along the road when entering and leaving the designated camping area.
The designated campsites are marked with a brown vertical fiberglass post with a site number and a "Designated Campsite" decal.
Each designated dispersed campsite has a place to park, fire ring, a place for a tent and no fees.
Once you have found a designated site you will find another fiberglass sign that reads "Camp within 50 feet of this post to reduce impact to forest vegetation. Please take all of your trash with you and leave only one fire ring."
The east end of Freidlein Prairie Road (approximately 1.5 miles) has a seasonal camping closure for campsites 10 through 14. This seasonal camping closure means campsites 10 through14 will be closed to camping from March 1 to August 31 to reduce disturbance to Mexican spotted owls during the breeding season. This area has traditionally been used by Mexican spotted owls for nesting and a pair of owls are being impacted by increased recreational use and are failing to reproduce.
Most sites cannot accommodate RV. Seasonal closures or fire restrictions/closures may be in place. During both Stage 1 and Stage 2 Fire Restrictions, campfires are prohibited at this site. Gas operated devices with an on/off switch are allowed.
Drove up and they had the campground closed down.
This isn't designed for your average RV or car the road is crazy rough. We had been in the area and stopped at the Chapel of the Holy Dove and met some other campers who were staying here. They asked us if we wanted to come out and dispersed camp here and we really wanted to, but my little car couldn't make the drive. We ended up 4 wheel driving up to the site with them and it was beautiful!!
We spent a little time here before returning to the bottom but it was well worth the travel up. I just wish we had a place we could have left the car and taken our tent up or had a vehicle that would have made it.
This location is great from Flagstaff and close to all the snow facilities in the area so it would not be a great place to try to camp during winter. It was only about 25 minutes from the chapel including the rough road but only about 5 minutes to where it started to get all rocky with the turn off.
- Check out that lava cave also when in this area it is between the chapel and the turn off. It is crazy to think that this are has such a large tube. It does somewhat look like a hole in the ground with retainers but inside it is a whole different exploration.
- Check out the chapel, I have included a few photos but this landmark is something that is a must see on your own. Open 24 hours a day to the public one of the neatest structures in this area.
The road into the campgrounds are very rough, small cars are not advised. There are only 10-14 sites available (first come first serve) depending what time of the year you arrive, since a pair of endangered owls nest between some of the campsites for a few months and will have the sites closed down. Be cautious of the stage of fire alert going on, when I went no campfires were allowed so I used a propane stove.
The surrounding areas are beautiful and a family of deer made appearances regularly. Also its free, so it was nice to avoid a hotel cost for the night.
The cons are that its hard to reach camp due to rough roads, very few campsites, and it seems the local teenagers really enjoy partying and screaming at all hours of the night. I assume you're better off on a weekday when all the kids are still in school.
Had a great time. Thanks for everything!
It was beautiful and woodsy! We had a great time! :)
If you want to get out of the "camp sites", this is a great option…yes, it's simple and the area is remote (sort of) and you get a nice quiet night. One of my first options in Flagstaff…now, don't share it or the crowds will come…
Came in summer and luckily found one of the few open spots left. Very private camp spots so the whole forest feels like it's yours. Great place to base for mountain biking and hiking