​Crown Land Car Camping 101: Exploring the Great Outdoors for Outdoor Enthusiasts

Posted by Ol'Red on 21st Jun 2023

​Crown Land Car Camping 101: Exploring the Great Outdoors for Outdoor Enthusiasts


Crown land offers a remarkable opportunity for outdoor enthusiasts to immerse themselves in nature and enjoy activities like target shooting, hunting, and fishing. Whether you're a seasoned camper or a novice in the world of crown land adventures, this guide will provide you with essential tips and tricks to make the most out of your car camping experience while pursuing your target shooting passion. So, grab your plaid shirt, and let's dive into Crown Land Car Camping 101!

Where to Camp:

Alberta's 18 Public Land Use Zones: Northern Alberta:

  • Athabasca Ranch
  • Brule Lake
  • Coal Branch
  • Holmes Crossing
  • Whitecourt Sandhills

Central Alberta:

  • Blackstone/Wapiabi
  • Dormer/Sheep
  • Job/Cline
  • Kiska/Willson
  • Panther Corners
  • Upper Clearwater/Ram

Southern Alberta:

  • Cataract Creek Snow Vehicle
  • Ghost
  • Kananaskis
  • Livingstone
  • McLean Creek Off-Highway Vehicle
  • Porcupine Hills
  • Sibbald Snow Vehicle

Note: Check regulations for the area you wish to visit regarding shooting and camping regulations.

Agricultural Public Land: Can be leased for grazing or farm development purposes. If the land is under a Grazing License, camping is generally allowed without the need for explicit permission, although it is still recommended to inquire beforehand. However, if the land is under a Grazing Lease or Farm Development Lease, it is necessary to contact the leaseholder and obtain their consent before camping. For additional details, please refer to the provided resource. For further assistance, you can contact Alberta Environment and Parks at 310-3773.

Safety First:

Safety should always be a top priority when engaging in target shooting. Follow these guidelines to ensure a safe experience on crown land:

a) Always handle firearms responsibly and with the utmost care. Familiarize yourself with proper gun safety protocols, and ensure everyone in your group follows them strictly.

b) Set up a safe shooting range with ample space for targets, ensuring no one is downrange during shooting.

c) Wear appropriate safety gear, including hearing and eye protection. A sturdy pair of shooting glasses and noise-canceling earmuffs are must-haves for any shooter.

d) Be aware of your surroundings and keep an eye out for other campers or recreational enthusiasts in the vicinity.

Packing Essentials:

When car camping on crown land, you'll need to bring along the essentials to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Here's a checklist to get you started:

a) Camping gear: Tent, sleeping bags, pillow, camping stove, cooking utensils, sleeping pads, cooler, toiletries, tarp, fire starter. Don't forget the food and beverages! Starting June 1, 2021, a Public Lands Camping Pass becomes a must-have for all crown land campers. Pricing: $20 per person for a 3-day pass. $30 per person for an annual pass.

b) Recreation equipment: Firearms, ammunition, targets, fishing rods, cornhole, and whatever else you enjoy doing.

c) Outdoor essentials: Backpack, camping chairs, bug spray, sunscreen, flashlight, knife, and a first-aid kit.

d) Clothing: While there are no strict dress codes in the wilderness, wearing appropriate attire is crucial. Consider packing durable pants, comfortable boots, and layers suitable for various weather conditions. And yes, don't forget your trusty plaid shirt – a classic choice for outdoor enthusiasts!

Environmental Stewardship:

We need to talk about something important: the sorry state of crown land. It seems like some folks have mistaken it for a giant garbage can, and it's time to set things straight. We're all tired of stumbling upon discarded trash while exploring these beautiful landscapes. So, let's not be "that person" who leaves their junk behind. Bring a garbage bag, be a responsible camper, and clean up your mess.

General rules:

  • Temporary structures, such as tents and campers, are the only allowed structures on crown land.
  • Limit your stay to 14 days, then relocate at least 1 km away for a minimum of 72 hours.
  • Keep the campsite tidy and prevent wildlife access to food by storing garbage in locked containers or vehicles.
  • Control pets to avoid disturbing wildlife or bothering neighbors.
  • Park on firm ground, like gravel or rocky surfaces, to prevent soil damage.
  • Choose a campsite away from bodies of water (100 meters), industrial sites, and animal trails.

Helpful Links:

Recommended Gear:

MTech MT-AXE Hatchet 11" w/Sheath - Canada First Ammo Corp.

Ol' Red's Plaid (canadafirstammo.ca)

Mountain House Adventure Meals - Canada First Ammo Corp.

Canada First Ammo - Unlabeled Bag - Pouch

Ameristep Parklands Field Chair (canadafirstammo.ca)

Ameristep Parklands Field Chair

Nightstick Dual-Switch Dual-Light Flashlight (canadafirstammo.ca)

Nightstick, Dual-Switch, Dual-Light, Flashlight


Crown land car camping provides a fantastic opportunity for firearms enthusiasts to indulge in their passion while immersing themselves in the beauty of the great outdoors. By planning ahead, prioritizing safety, and following responsible outdoor practices, you can create memorable experiences while respecting the environment and others around you. So, grab your plaid shirt, load up your camping gear, and venture into the wilderness for an unforgettable crown land car camping adventure!

Remember, responsible target shooting on crown land not only provides an opportunity for recreation but also allows us to appreciate the importance of preserving these natural spaces for generations to come. So, let the breathtaking landscapes and the thrill of hitting the target motivate you to be a responsible crown land car camper. Happy shooting and happy camping!