Permits and Camping on the Pacific Northwest Trail
Between the Crown of the Continent, high in the Rocky Mountains, and the sandy shores of the Pacific Ocean, the Pacific Northwest Trail traverses three amazing national parks, seven spectacular national forests, and many other special places. Camping options will vary along the length of the trail.
Roughly 600 miles of the PNT crosses national forest lands where backcountry permits are not required and dispersed camping according to the principles of Leave No Trace is generally welcome. In some areas, self-registration permits can be obtained at trailheads. Learn more about dispersed camping on our national forests here.
Over 200 miles of the PNT pass through three national parks where backcountry permits are required for overnight camping trips. Glacier National Park, North Cascades National Park, and Olympic National Park National Park provide designated backcountry campgrounds for wilderness camping. Dispersed, or at-large camping, is not allowed anywhere in these national parks. A valid permit will specify each campsite you will stay at each night you spend in the backcountry of the national park. Each park has a different set of procedures for getting a backcountry permit. Learn more about how to get a permit for your adventure below.