Posts Tagged ‘free camping’

Iowa DNR announced Tuesday, February 28, that they have openings for campground hosts in 20 Iowa State parks this summer. Camp hosts receive free camping at a designated campsite in return for assisting campers by explaining park rules, helping with registration, and serving as an impromptu local tour guide. Hosts will also help park staff with cleaning and light maintenance.

Iowa Campground Hosts

Iowa Campground Hosts

“We would like to get hosts placed in parks around the middle of March so they are ready to go in April,” said Linda King, with the DNR’s office of volunteer services.

Hosts are currently needed for the season at:

  • Pine Lake (124 sites)
  • Pilot Knob (60 sites)
  • Walnut Woods (22 sites)
  • Lake Keomah (65 sites)
  • Lake Manawa (72 sites)
  • Lewis and Clark (112 sites)
  • Bellevue (46 sites)
  • Backbone (125 sites)
  • Beeds Lake (144 sites)
  • Clear Lake (180 sites)
  • Ledges (95 sites)
  • Nine Eagles (68 sites)
  • Pikes Peak (77 sites)
  • Viking Lake (120 sites)
  • Yellow River State Forest (4 campgrounds)
  • Elk Rock (2 campgrounds).

If an entire season is too much, three state parks have host needs of shorter durations:

  • Lacey-Keosauqua April through June;
  • Prairie Rose from the end of June through October;
  • Volga River for July and August.

Applications are available online at http://volunteer.iowadnr.gov .  Alternatively you can call: 1-515-242-5074 to have an application mailed.

The Department of Natural Resources and Environment is offering free camping in the summer of 2011 for outdoor lovers who volunteer as campground hosts at Michigan state parks or state forest campgrounds. The Campground Host Program, established by the DNRE, allows individuals to camp in a state park or state forest campground at no charge in return for providing visitor assistance in the campground.

“Being a campground host combines the fun of camping, with the satisfaction of helping fellow campers,” said Ron Olson, DNRE Recreation Division chief. “Hosts stay as our guests and, in return, help welcome other campers to our beautiful state parks, recreation areas and state forest campgrounds.”

Hosts direct visitors to their campsites, answer questions about the park or state forest, arrange campground activities and perform light maintenance and other services, depending on the host’s talents and interests. Retired couples, teachers and students, as well as families, are just some of the people who have enjoyed volunteering as campground hosts.

Campground hosts can be individuals or teams. Hosts must be at least 18 years old, provide services five days/30 hours per week (including weekends and holidays), serve a minimum of four consecutive weeks and furnish their own camping unit, equipment and personal items. State park hosts must attend a two-day training session the end of April 2011 at the Ralph A. MacMullan Conference Center in Roscommon. This training is not required of state forest campground hosts.

Campground hosts are chosen by park and forest managers who may require an interview or request additional information. Selection is based on the individual’s familiarity with the state park or state forest system, their camping experience, special skills, availability, knowledge of the area and the needs of the specific park or forest campground.

Hosts especially are needed during the busy camping season, which can begin as early as April in state parks located in southern Michigan. Many of last year’s campground hosts will be returning this year; however, vacancies still exist at park and forest campground locations throughout Michigan.

Many rustic campgrounds found throughout Michigan’s six state forests located in the Upper Peninsula and the northern Lower Peninsula also are in need of hosts. Information and applications are available from the DNRE’s Web site at www.michigan.gov/dnrvolunteers. Persons interested in being a campground host at a state park should apply directly to the park of their choice. For more information on campground host positions in state parks and recreation areas contact Pam Ames at 517-467-7401; for state forest campgrounds please contact Ada Takacs at 989-275-5151 ext. 2049.

Celebrate Earth Day with a free camping

The County of San Diego Department of Parks and Recreation invites the public to kick off Earth Day on April 22 by camping for free for one night at one of its eight camping parks. “What better way to celebrate Earth Day than by getting outdoors?” said Brian Albright, Director of County of San Diego Department of Parks and Recreation. “Our campgrounds are places where nature converges with fresh air, clean water and beautiful landscapes, and on Earth Day it’s all free.”

The campgrounds will host Earth Day events and activities. Locations include:
Agua Caliente in the Anza Borrego Desert: A popular location in the winter due to its hot springs, which feed two outdoor and one indoor pool. Wildflowers should be bursting with color in April and May. Events.
Dos Picos in Ramona: Sheltered by steep, boulder-strewn mountains and ancient oak groves, this park offers a variety of ranger-led programs, including rock painting, nature hikes, and fishing.
Guajome in Oceanside: Just minutes from the ocean, it features a small lake, miles of hiking trails and the historic Rancho Guajome Adobe, offering insight into life in the area in the 1800s.
Lake Morena in Campo: Features fishing, boating, and hiking along the Pacific Crest Trail. Events
Potrero in Potrero: Quiet solitude best describes this park, but it’s also near some adventurous places such as historic Campo and the Mexican town of Tecate. Events.
Sweetwater Summit in Bonita: Offers miles of trails for hikers, bikers and horseback riders as well as spectacular views of the Sweetwater Valley.
Vallecito in the Anza Borrego Desert: Site of the reconstructed sod Butterfield Stage Station.
William Heise in Julian: Peaceful mountain meadows provide the setting for miles of trails.

Note the following rules and guidelines for the Earth Day camping special:

1. Offer is valid for the night of April 22, 2010 only.
2. Offer applies to campsite fees only. All other fees are non-applicable.
3. Cannot be combined with any other offer.
4. Offer is non-refundable and cannot be redeemed for cash, credit or
refunds.
5. One offer per customer. Cannot be combined with any other offer,
discounts or promotional item.
6. Offer applies to individual campsites only.
7. Subject to availability and is offered on a first come first serve basis.
8. Reservations can be made in person, online or by phone. Advanced
reservation is encouraged.

To book your reservation, click here.

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