Best 5 Free Camping Spots in Indiana (or Nearly Free)

Camping will let you disconnect from the rush of the modern technology-driven world where we live. Enjoy the peaceful quiet of nature of free camping spot in Indiana. There are some campsites around the state that will let you enjoy the great outdoors for absolutely free.

There are many free camping spots in Indiana. We listed here a few amazing places where you to get rid of anxiety. The beautiful camping places and successful camping will give you a fresh life.

Charles C Deam Wilderness – Grubb Ridge TH

Site NameCharles C Deam Wilderness – Grubb Ridge TH
Cost ConditionThis is a FREE campsite
ManagementPublic – Forest Service
AddressTower Ridge Road, Bloomington, Indiana
GPS39.032861, -86.340793
ActivitiesWildlife Viewing, Hiking, Tent Camping, Dispersed camping
ReservationsReservations are not accepted at this campsite

There are many campsites and hikes along the lake off the peninsula trail. The special trail is about 6 miles one way. These are of course hiking, not car camping. There is car camping in certain areas. Get some spots very close off the trail but you are not having much water source. Turtles walk around the place.

On 446 south of the Causeway that crosses Lake Monroe, enter the Deam wilderness area across the road to the east off 446. Then to the East. After passing the fire tower, you can turn South to the next road that turns to the Right.

It’s a couple of miles off 446. Very close to the South, you can find a few campsites. They are suitable for tent camping. You can’t have any facilities at these sites. Calm environment is ensured here. A few pounds around the area looks very nice. Go to those ponds with a cane pole, and a tent.

Buzzard Roost Recreation Area

Site NameBuzzard Roost Recreation Area
Cost ConditionThis is a FREE campsite
ManagementPublic – Forest Service (Official)
AddressCannelton, Indiana
GPSLat- 38o 7′ 11.273″N, Long- 86o 27′ 56.379″W
ActivitiesWildlife Viewing, RV Parking, Fishing, Tent Camping, Hiking
ReservationsNear Water

The road up to the site is very nice. They will direct you to set up tents in the spurs. The place is open & close together.  As the place is far away from the highway, it is a very quiet place. There is no marked area tent. 

Buzzard Roost area is an amazing free camping spot in Indiana.

You need to park any motorcycle on the last camper slip. Make your tent in a designated area. Otherwise, you could have a ticket from the cop. Trails are good to walk around for a long time. 

The roads to the campsites are winding & narrow. You can have a stack of brush & some old logs ready to burn if you are lucky. The pit toilet here is neat and clean.

Blackwell Horse Camp

Site NameBlackwell Horse Camp
Cost ConditionThis is a FREE campsite
ManagementPublic – Forest Service (USDA) (Official)
AddressBloomington, Indiana
GPS39.017262, -86.38971
ActivitiesHorse Trails, Hiking

This is a well known destination & overnight camping area for equestrians. Different kinds of campers are invited although the facilities are geared to provide for riding horses. It is located along Tower Ridge Road in the center of the Charles Deam Wilderness area. It is almost one mile from Highway 446. 

Blackwell Horse campsite is another nice free camping spot in Indiana.

You can easily take a long bed truck pulling a 32 foot travel trailer. Campers go there almost all over the whole year. The sheriff patrols the camp grounds to make you feel safe. It is located in a quiet place. Well made roads go straight to the place. You can have the AT&T signal in 5G.

Berry Ridge Rd

Site NameBerry Ridge Rd
Cost ConditionThis is a FREE campsite
ManagementPublic – Forest Service
AddressBerry Ridge Road, Freetown, Indiana
GPS39.063778, -86.207983
ActivitiesWildlife Viewing
ReservationsReservations are not accepted at this campsite & first come, first served

You can easily find the campsite as it is located down berry ridge road. There are some sites that are located far from the main road. Choose such places if you want a quiet environment. If you are lucky, there are crude fire rings in both sites you can have utilized.

The place is peaceful most of the time but very busy in the hunting months. There is a shooting range nearby and that’s why you may hear gunshots by day time. You can keep driving south if you are looking for a more isolated and remote experience.

Beach-side Campsite in Hoosier NF

Site NameBeach-side Campsite in Hoosier NF
Cost ConditionThis is a FREE campsite
ManagementPublic – State Forest (Official)
AddressBloomington, Indiana
GPS39.073348, -86.376019
ActivitiesTent Camping, Hiking, Wildlife Viewing, Fishing, Swimming, Boating
Amenities:Near Water
Reservations:Reservations are not accepted at this campsite

You can reach the campsite via a 4.7 mile hike one way from the Grub Ridge Trailhead on Tower Road. Hosier forest campsite is another beautiful free camping spot in Indiana. It is an official NF Campsite. There are several other sites nearby. This site is not vehicle accessible. First come first serve is maintained here. 

Only hiking can be enjoyed here with fishing. You can practice here whether you would like to get into more serious backpacking. Test your newly bought shoes, tent and other accessories here. There are about seven open sites here. 


Is Boondocking legal in Indiana?

Yes, it is legal in some places in Indiana. Boondocking means the opportunity to camp far from the services that can be found at RV parks or developed campgrounds.

It’s a popular way of camping that offers us beautiful destinations for days or weeks at a time. Check first with local ranger districts for recommended free Indiana camping areas.

Can you camp anywhere in Indiana?

In general, you can camp anywhere if you have permission earlier. Campers needn’t limit themselves to improved campgrounds. Couples of small towns have private campgrounds right in town. RV owners spend nights in state rest areas & truck stops.

Some boondockers get away from it all with careful planning. Private landowners can welcome campers. make sure to get permission before setting up camp.

Where can I disperse camp in Indiana?

Many of the best opportunities for dispersal in Indiana you can have inside or near the Hoosier National Forest. It is a large natural preserve that is located between Indianapolis and Bloomington.

In this region, there is a varied collection of habitats inside the national forest. Enjoy fishing, hiking, mountain biking, riding horses, boating & many other outside activities here. Go for quiet campgrounds like these.

How much does an Indiana state park pass cost?

The price depends on the season. Check first before going there. The annual vehicle pass is $50 for non residents and $70 for residents.

The Indiana State Parks Pass is applicable from January 1st to December 31st and it doesn’t matter when it is bought. Buy it and use it now for the best value for your money. You can buy it online or in person at any park entrance gate.

Where can you tent camp in Indiana?

There are a couple of tent camps available in Indiana like-1) Maines Pond Hoosier National Forest, 2) The Hickory Ridge Horse Camp, 3) Shirley Creek Horse Camp, 4) Morgan-Monroe State Forest, 5) Blackwell Horse Camp Hoosier National Forest. Make sure to call first about the current situation of the local authority.

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