Main Glossary Page
Average Parking Apron Size
Based on the authors' judgement, the average parking apron is measured and indicated in the campground description. The purpose of this information is for RVrs to decide whether parking aprons in a campground will accommodate their rig.
Boat Carry Down Access
In the campground description, "yes," indicates an area suitable for a camper to carry a canoe, kayak or other small water craft into a body of water from within a campground or directly from the camper's camp site. This access is not a boat ramp. A "no" indicates the absence of such an area.
In the campground description, "yes," indicates the presence of a developed and maintained ramp suitable for campers to launch a power or non-power boat into a body of water within a campground or recreation area. A "no" indicates the absence of a boat ramp.
Boondocking (or dry camping) is used to describe a type of camping by an RVer. Camping in this manner involves using all the self-contained facilities of an RV - fresh water, electric (battery powered) and waste disposal.
The term "chaparral" is derived from the Spanish for scrub-oak and is commonly found in the southwest. Chaparral describes a community of tough, fire-resistant shrub vegetation in an area with wet, mild winters and hot, dry summers with an assortment of hardy, versatile wildlife. California Oak, Toyon (Holly Wood), and Chamise are common chaparral shrubs. Birds such as Scrub Jay and Wrentit add color and music to the Chaparral.
convenient cologne substitute. May make you less attractive to mosquitos. Or not.
Where all trees larger than one inch are harvested. The only tree exceptions are trees designated for wildlife habitat. This method of harvest provides maximum sunlight for new tree growth.
A designated site in a National Forest campground that can, in the author's judgement, accommodate either a tent or an RV.
This type of tree has needle-leaves which it retains year round. Examples Balsam Fir, Ponderosa, Sitka Spruce, Juniper, and Redwood trees.
This type of tree will lose its leaves on a seasonal basis either in fall or during the dry seasons. Examples Maple, Elm, Sycamore, and Cottonwood trees.
to a campground Although there may be multiple routes into a campground, the authors' attempted to select the one that is the easiest and safest for campers with RVs. However, directions may include roads that are dirt, narrow, steep and washboards. A city or town is always used as the starting point in providing directions to a campground. The criteria for the selected city or town is that it must be on the Rand McNally Road Atlas and have gasoline and limited groceries. On rare occasions the authors do make exceptions to this rule. An example of this exception is where the road to a campground from an acceptable town is not considered the best choice. In this case, the directions will cite a city or town different from the "Nearest City/Town" displayed in the campground description. The latter city or town does have gasoline and groceries.
Represents camping in undeveloped areas throughout a National Forest. These areas can be accessed by various means of transportation, i.e., automobile, hiking, horse, bike, canoe, etc. Dispersed camping is usually very primitive - no fresh water, sanitation or refuge facilities - pack it in, pack it out. Check with the Supervisor or Ranger District Office for rules that may apply to dispersed camping.
In the information provided for each campground, the authors indicate "yes" or "no"for fishing. "Yes" means fishing is readily accessible from the campground. When the campground is located in a National Forest Recreation Area and there is fishing within the recreation area, "yes" is indicated. "No" means fishing is not readily accessible from the campground.
Electric, water and sewer connections are provided for an RV.
Grilles on Sites
While most designated campsites do have a place for fire, not all are equipped with a grill. The definition for a grill is a metal rack or surface where a pot and pan can be placed above a fire and used for cooking. The number of grilles on sites represent the number of grilles found at the campground and not the number of fire rings or pits.
This is a campground, designated by the Forest Service, for groups only. Normally, these campgrounds are reserved by contacting the appropriate Ranger District Office.
Group RV Site
A campsite with a large parking apron that accommodates two or more RVs. Such a site is often designated for double occupancy by the Forest Service and may require a higher fee. A group RV site should not be confused with a group campground where an entire campground is reserved for a group of campers.
A forest management technique where small groups or clusters of trees are removed to create an opening for wildlife habitat and regeneration of trees which require partial sunlight.
Group Tent Site
A campsite with an area off the parking apron which can accommodate two or more tents. A higher fee may be required. A group tent site should not be confused with a group campground where an entire campground is reserved for a group of campers.
A mechanical device, used to draw water, protruding about three to four feet above the ground with a long handle. The handle is pumped by hand to extract potable water from a well below.
In the information provided for each campground, we indicate "yes" or "no" for hiking. "Yes" means there is a marked trail head readily accessible from the campground. In some cases, the campground may be located in a National Forest Recreation Area. If so, and there is a trail head located within the recreation area, "yes" is indicated. If known, the trail mileage and type of hiking is indicated, i.e., foot, horse, ATV, etc. Some campgrounds have trails, but they are not marked. "No" for hiking is indicated but the hiking comments reflect there are unmarked trails.
Individual Tree Selection
A forest management technique where individual trees of various sizes, dispersed throughout the forest, are individually selected for harvest. This method is frequently used to remove very old, sick or diseased trees.
For the purpose of this Guide, "kayaking" is defined as a whitewater sport where individuals challenge themselves in a paper thin kayak on fast flowing bodies of water. A "yes" means there is a useable whitewater waterway at or readily accessible from a campground. A "no" designation means there are no whitewater waterways in or readily accessible from the campground.
Largest Parking Apron Size
Based on the authors' judgement, the largest parking apron is measured and indicated in the campground description. The purpose of this information is for RVrs to decide whether parking aprons in a campground will accommodate their rig.
This term describes the center or mid-point in a forest's vegetation. An approximate height in a mature forest would be the head of a man.
"Congress established the Forest Service in 1905 to provide quality water and timber for the Nations benefit. Over the years, the public has expanded the list of what they want from National Forests (and Grasslands). Congress responded by directing the Forest Service to manage national forests for additional multiple uses and benefits and for the sustained yield of renewable resources such as water, forage, wildlife, wood, and recreation. Multiple use means managing resources under the best combination of uses to benefit the American people while ensuring the productivity of the land and protecting the quality of the environment."
National Recreation Area
A Congressionally identified "special place" within the National Forest Service System. These "special places" are recognized and managed in a special way by the Forest Service.
A city or town closest to a National Forest campground that has both gasoline and groceries. The groceries may be minimal and located in a "convenience" store. The city or town stated in the "Directions" to a campground may be different from the "Nearest City/Town" designation in the campground description; see "Directions - to a campground," above.
The site is located in an open area or has little vegetation around it with no shade or canopy of vegetation.
This term describes the highest level of vegetation seen in a given area. The over-story is composed of the crown of leaves from the trees. Pack it In, Pack it Out A campground has no refuge site. If no refuge facilities are provided, campers are required to pack out what they pack in.
Prescribed or Controlled Burns
In some National Forests, this is a method used to reduce the risk of catastrophic fire and maintain the forest health. The Forest Service applies and monitors these controlled fires. Burns are generally performed in the spring during the off-camping season to minimize impact on campers.
Sometimes the slopes on one side of a mountain range are forested differently from the other side because the mountain range forces moisture-laden air to condensate on that side. With condensation, rain falls on that side and leaves little moisture for the other side. The result is a thick, rich forest on the rain shadow side of the mountain range and a dry, less lush forest on the other.
This is a term used primarily west of the Mississippi, describing picnic tables that are covered with a roof-like structure.
Recreational vehicle (RV) is a motor home, travel trailer, slide-in or pop-up tent.
Riparian Environment (Riverine)
Most distinctive in the southwestern region, Riparian environments are strips of lush forests found along waterways. The area is moist and cooler than the nearby chaparral environment and an ideal habitat for animals. Sycamore and Cottonwoods are common riparian trees along with yellow monkey-flowers and stream orchids. Newts, Sandpipers and Kingfishers are a few of the frequently seen wildlife.
See Recreational Vehicle, above.
RV Pull Throughs
These are drive-through parking aprons, normally semi-circular in design. No backing is required.
A camping site in a National Forest campground that has been designated by the Forest Service for RVs only or, in the authors' judgement, accommodates only an RV.
Generally, for the purpose of this Guide, there is a body of water adjacent to a National Forest campground, where, in our judgement, sailing is possible. A "yes" means sailing is possible and, to our knowledge, is permitted by federal, state and local authorities. A "no" designation means there is no water for sailing, or there is water, but it is not a practical option or federal, state or local authorities prohibit the sport.
Seed Tree Cutting
Removes most of the trees in a cutting and leaves a few, well-spaced trees to reseed the area.
Approximately 40 to 60 percent of the trees are selectively removed. This allows younger or remaining trees to become established within the shelter of the remaining, older trees.
"the art of managing and tending a forest"
A potable water device available to all campers. It is not camping site specific and can be a device with or without threads. This designation includes either a pressurized system or hand pumps.
In the information provided for each campground, "yes" or "no" is indicated for swimming. "Yes" means there is swimming easily accessible in or from the campground and is provided (marked and posted) by the Forest Service. "No" means there is no body of water for swimming or there is water, but the Forest Service does not provide an area for swimming. In most cases, where swimming is provided, there are no lifeguards.
Tables on Sites
This field provides the number of picnic tables found within the campground. Not all campsites have a table because they are moved by campers from one site to another. The authors attempt to account for this in their research.
Found along the coast from Alaska through Oregon and in pockets in northern California, the temperate rainforest is a product of abundant moisture from coastal fog, rain, and occasional snow. This environment supports immensely tall trees such as Sitka Spruce, Western Hemlock, and Western Red cedar.
The variety of tents is huge. For the Guide, the authors limit the term to a portable, soft-walled structure that can sleep two adults comfortably.
This is normally an area at a campground site that is clearly defined for a tent. The authors' criteria for a tent pad is it must be framed with wood, cement or some other material. If an area on the site is elevated, this too may qualify as a tent pad. The fact that there is an open grassy area at the site does not qualify as a tent pad.
A designated site in a National Forest Campground that accommodates only a tent. Either the Forest Service permits only a tent or, in the authors' judgement, the site is not suitable for an RV. Walk-in sites are clear examples of tent sites only.
This term describes the lower vegetation or ground cover found in a forest. This vegetation includes grass, ferns, berry bushes, and very young trees.
This is a toilet without running water. It is also known as an "outhouse" or "pit toilet." Chemical toilets, similar to those found in airplanes, are also classified as vaults.
Walk in Tent Sites
From a parking lot or designated parking spot for a vehicle, a camper must walk to access a site. These sites are normally no more then a few hundred feet from the parking area.
Generally, a body of water is adjacent to a National Forest campground. Regulations for water sports are normally controlled by either state or local authorities. A "yes" means that, in the authors' judgement, the sport is practical and authorities permit it. A "no" designation means there is no water, the sport is not practical or authorities prohibit it.
Also known as a "dump station," this is a location where waste water from RVs is dumped. Potable water for the RV fresh water tank (or other water containers) may also be available at or near the actual dump location. Wheelchair Friendly In the information provided for each campground, "Wheelchair Friendly," is displayed with either "yes" or "no" indicated. "Yes" means there is at least one bathroom stall (or vault) with handrails, which can be accessed with a wheelchair. "No" means there are no handrails or, although handrails are provided, in the authors' judgement, barriers exist preventing wheelchair accessibility. No attempt is made to ensure that campgrounds are in compliance with state or federal law, regulations or guidelines.
An area defined by the Congress and designated "wilderness" has three equally important characteristics 1) It is a place not controlled by humans, where natural ecosystem processes operate freely, and where its primeval character and influence are retained. 2) It is a place not occupied or modified by humankind, where humans are merely visitors, and the imprint of their work is hardly noticeable. 3) It is a place with outstanding opportunities for solitude and for a primitive and unconfined recreation experience. No motorized vehicles (including boats) or power tools are permitted in a designated wilderness.
Describes a camping site where trees provide a canopy for shade most of the day.
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