Skate Creek Road Dispersed Camping

Gifford Pinchot National Forest

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Skate Creek Road - NF-52 Packwood, WA 98361 360-497-1100 Official Website

GPS: 46.7273, -121.8316

  • Overview
  • Q&A
  • Reviews (2)
  • Amenities

Overview of Skate Creek Road Dispersed Camping

Accessibility is not guaranteed, always scout ahead before driving down dirt roads.
Learn more: Boondocking101

Pad Type mixed

Open Seasonally Yes

Elevation 2,427 ft / 739 m

Tent Camping Yes

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Reviews of Skate Creek Road Dispersed Camping 2 people have reviewed this location.

Ratings Summary

Overall Rating
Site Quality
1 review
“Gorgeous Free Camping”

Reviewed 8/9/2020

Nightly rate: FREE!
Days stayed: 10
Site Number: NA
Overall Rating

I found a prime campsite with the two things I required of a campsite: 1.) Shade & 2.) Creek Access. The first time up, in mid-July, I stayed 3 nights/4 days. The second time, a week later, I stayed 10 nights/11 days and just got back last night (8/8). Packwood is less than 15 miles away, Ashford is about 15 miles away. Tons of free spots of varying size just off the road. Some are big enough for RVs, but there are very few for large RVs. Get here early for the best spots. Fridays & Saturdays are busiest.

Bring firewood or an axe/hand saw/chainsaw for firewood collecting and don't forget the bug spray! You'll need it. Biting flies are bad, worse than the mosquitoes.
Bring plenty of potable water or a way to purify the very clear & cold creek water, either by boiling, filter, or purification tablets.

PACK OUT YOUR GARBAGE! There is no garbage service and you must pack out what you bring in. It's quiet, peaceful, & gorgeous! A huge party of 20+ people and 6-8 cars, was out here last Thursday thru Sunday and they bagged up all their garbage but then left it. No one else would camp there bc of the garbage, especially after the birds (& raccoons) got into it. Burn what you can (paper products), bury your food & biological waste, and pack out the unburnables (metal/cans/foil, glass, foam, plastics, etc).

Didn't see or hear any animals other than birds, rodents, bugs, and baby fish, but there are probably raccoons, rabbits, & squirrels/chipmunks. Ravens, Robins, Stellar's Jays, and American Dippers are most common.

Bring extra batteries for your flashlights bc it is DARK out here, like, can't see your hand in front of your face dark.

There is NO cell service until you leave the Gifford-Pinchot National Park on the way to Packwood. I didn't get reception until Elbe/Alder Lake. I have a gov't track phone, so I'm unsure of the carrier, but no one I talked to got cell reception out there.

Also, it must be said, please do not steal from your camp neighbors. Two different parties took firewood that I gathered from right next to my firepit, which took forever and was painful for me (I have back, knee, hip, & ankle problems and need pain medications & use a cane out here) and one party lied about it and then threatened me, yelled at me, and actually shoved me and tried to call the cops on me saying I was harassing them. If you need something, ASK. Most will be willing to help if they are able. Respect your neighbors, be kind, & treat others the way you wish to be treated please, and everyone will have a peaceful trip.

Site Quality

Lioness006 would stay here again

This review is the opinion of a Campendium member and not of

6 reviews
“pretty spot right off the road”

Reviewed 7/16/2020

Nightly rate: FREE!
Days stayed: 0
Site Number: 0
Overall Rating

There are a bunch of spots following the road from the turn off around Ashford to Packwood. The better spots are on the Packwood side. There are spots for rvs, big rigs, and tent camping. Just a few bigger sites. The tent sites look great. Park and walk in close to the creek. We didn’t stay the night but wanted to check it out. Would love to stay here though!

Site Quality

miknfizzle would stay here again

This review is the opinion of a Campendium member and not of

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  • dry camping
  • Dispersed Camping
  • recreation trail
  • water access
Site Amenities
  • fire ring
  • pets


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