New camping rules for parts of the Umpqua National Forest near Cottage Grove go into effect today (Monday). Officials say long-term, homeless campers have created unsanitary conditions.
Camping along portions of Brice Creek and Sharps Creek will be limited to 14 days in a 45-day period. Melissa Swain is with the Cottage Grove Ranger District. She says the rule is changing because some campers have not kept clean sites:
Swain: “We’ve had some health and sanitation type issues. Definitely human waste concerns. Animals coming into camps just because of the amount of trash in the area, they want to see what kind of leftover food and stuff there is.”
In addition, Swain says, hunters and other forest users have found their favorite spots taken for weeks and months at a time. Most National Forest land does have restrictions on long-term camping. Violating the rule could result in a $5,000 fine, six months in jail, or both.
Find a link to maps and details here.