Recreation frequently asked questions

Tent set up at a campsite.

group camp iconGroup campsites are reservation-only and, with a few exceptions, may allow you to bring a passenger vehicle to a primitive tent-only campsite on District lands if required information is provided. Group campsites are typically located near a conservation area entrance or gate access. They generally offer amenities such as non-potable water pitcher pumps, benches and/or picnic tables, fire ring or grill, and picnic pavilion; some have portable toilets. Reservations are made online and require contact information and occupancy totals, as well as vehicle make, model and license plate numbers to receive a code for gate access.

camp iconFirst-come/first-served campsites are designated sites in remote areas of our lands and offer more of a backcountry camping experience. You must hike, boat or bicycle to the campsite, depending on the site. No vehicles are allowed past the parking area. These sites cannot be reserved.

camp iconOn our Property list and activities webpage, you may sort by the type of recreation you are interested in.  Choose “camping” from the pull-down menu and view the property or geospatial trail maps on the property where you’d like to camp. Find the icon for first-come/first-served campsites.

Personal passenger vehicles, such as cars/sedans, pickup trucks, SUVs, Jeeps and minivans, are allowed if they don’t contain living/sleeping quarters and are listed on the vehicle permit.

Recreational vehicles of all kinds are prohibited, including but not limited to motorhomes, Class B or Class C RVs, truck campers, pop-up campers, passenger or cargo vans with living/sleeping quarters, towable travel trailers, or horse or cargo trailers with living/sleeping quarters. Additionally, recreational vehicles may not park overnight in District parking lots and may be subject to ticketing or towing.

If your van is a camper van or a modified cargo or passenger van with living/sleeping quarters, it is not allowed at the campsite at any time or overnight in District parking areas.

An individual or a member of a group or unit may camp no more than seven consecutive nights and for a total of 30 days per property each calendar year.

No, individuals and members of the same group or family unit must exit the property and remove all possessions for at least one night before starting a new reservation. You and/or your group/unit may camp for a grand total of 30 nights per year per property. Reserving under different names to extend a stay or exceed the maximums is prohibited and can result in no longer being allowed to make reservations to camp, though you may still use our first-come/first-served campsites.

No, you may only reserve one campsite in the same time frame. Reservations will be administratively canceled if two campsites are reserved by the same person/group for the same period or if dates overlap. Check your reservation dates carefully.

A group campsite reservation typically allows up to 24 individuals, but a few sites further limit occupancy — for instance, Buck Lake Conservation Area’s limit is 15 people. An accurate total number must be specified when making your online reservation. If you have a group larger than 24 people, please contact the Bureau of Land Resources at 386-329-4401 or to request a special-use authorization (SUA) permit. Allow a minimum of three weeks for permit consideration.

First-come/first-served campsites allow up to six individuals. If you are first on site, you may claim the entire campsite and are not required to share the campsite with others not in your party, with few exceptions (i.e., hunting season on certain wildlife management areas, or WMAs).

It depends on the campsite and the space in each. Be sure to read the confirmation email for the total number of vehicles allowed at the campsite you’ve reserved.

Yes. Pets must be leashed at all times.

All-terrain, off-road or other motorized vehicles are prohibited on District lands, with few exceptions for mobility-impaired persons holding an AMP permit received through the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and by special-use authorization.

The camping reservation system is available online at Camping on district lands – SJRWMD. When making a reservation, you must provide your:

  • First and last name
  • Full home address
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Number of adults/children/pets at the campsite
  • Vehicle make, model, color, and license plate numbers of all vehicles accessing the campsite, unless hiking or bicycling in.

Vehicle information and occupancy must be selected each time a reservation is made or the fields will be blank. Addresses and phone numbers must be complete.

Reservations may be administratively canceled if required information is not provided when a reservation is made and/or the requestor is unresponsive to staff inquiries to obtain required information.

District conservation areas are wild, natural lands that are managed for conservation purposes to protect water resources and natural systems. Contact information allows us to reach you if there are unexpected changes to your group camping reservation, including emergencies such as a wildfire or storm damage during your reservation, if land management activities such as prescribed burning may affect the campsite, roads, trails or gate access, or if we find damage to the campsite facilities or our lands.

Vehicle information is required if you want vehicular access to a reservable campsite located in a gated portion of District property. Most of our group campsites are behind gates. If you plan to hike from the parking lot, you are welcome to do so without providing vehicle information, as you will not need gate access.

To receive a valid vehicle permit and gate combination associated with reservable group camping, we require vehicle make, model, color and license plate number of any vehicle entering the gated area. This requirement includes vehicle information for the reservation holder as well as any companions’ vehicles. Unauthorized vehicles found in gated portions of the property can be ticketed for trespassing, and owners may be prohibited from reserving a District campsite in the future.

Here is where you add this required information:

CampLife instructions

Be sure to have all vehicle make, model and license plate information in hand when you make a reservation – you cannot change it in the app after your reservation is confirmed. However, we do recognize that circumstances change, companions may want to bring their vehicles to the campsite, etc., and you may not have their vehicle information when you make your reservation. You may correct or update any portion of your reservation by emailing at least seven days prior to your arrival. Last-minute changes cannot be guaranteed.

No. Group campsites must be reserved 24 hours in advance and require contact, occupancy and vehicle information.

The group campsite is set aside for you and your companions exclusively during your reservation. The exception would be a few campsites located in wildlife management areas (WMAs) that may be split into four tent sites during hunting season to accommodate hunting parties.

You can report squatters to the Bureau of Land Resources during business hours by calling 386-329-4401, and staff will alert the land manager and, if needed, law enforcement. However, if this occurs after business hours or if you feel unsafe at any time, please contact local law enforcement directly. Make sure you have your reservation confirmation, ID and a valid vehicle permit if you have vehicle(s) at the reservable campsite.

While glitches occasionally occur, this happens most frequently with last-minute reservations. The automated system will send you a confirmation email, but the system does not generate a reminder email immediately after the confirmation email. Reminder emails contain necessary gate access information and, typically, are automatically sent 24–36 hours prior to your arrival. If you do not receive a reminder and/or gate combination before your arrival date, doublecheck to see if your vehicle, occupancy and contact information is complete and email with your name and camping location to receive the gate combination.