Begin Main Content Area

Making Improvements

Improvements to maintain your cabin and campsite are necessary to keep everything working properly and looking nice.

Any improvements should be discussed with your campsite administrator to make sure your plans do not conflict with the lease terms or Guidelines for Leased Forest Campsites (PDF).

Building Construction and Renovations

Any major construction, structural repairs, or additions to the cabin must first have building plans reviewed and approved by the district forester and DCNR Bureau of Forestry before any construction can take place.

Building plans must have a registered architect or engineer stamp.

Second stories or the appearance of a half story or gambrel roofs will not be approved. Upper level lofts may be permitted provided it is open to the lower lever with no partition walls. Construction approvals are valid for one year.

The current building specifications are listed in Section C of the campsite guidelines. You can use the DCNR checklist for cabin construction plans (PDF) to assist you through the process.


In addition to an outdoor latrine, one storage building may be constructed on the lease but it must be detached from the cabin.

It may not exceed 120 square feet in area and should be similar to the cabin in construction, design, and appearance. The location and building plans must be approved in advance by the district forester.


The district forester may permit the installation of a gate on the access road leading to your campsite. The district forester must approve the location and the gate will be constructed and installed to proper standards and specifications.

You can use the DCNR acceptable gate designs document (PDF) to assist through the process.

Target Shooting

Target shooting at your campsite is prohibited unless you submit a request for and receive approval from the district forester.

You will need to identify the proposed location and complete and submit a written request for a target shooting range. You will also need to complete the Release and Indemnification Form (PDF).

Be aware that any shooting range associated with your lease may be used by the general public and that you, as the requesting person, are responsible for its safety and upkeep. Make sure to read the guidelines for target shooting (PDF) on state forest land.

Satellite Dishes

You are permitted to install one satellite dish that is no bigger than 36” at its widest point. The dish should be placed in the most unobtrusive location within the campsite lease area.

The dish may not be attached to any trees and removal of trees to gain better reception is at the discretion of the district forester.

In order to install a satellite dish, you must complete and submit a Satellite Dish Request Form (PDF) to the district forester for approval. Forms may be obtained from the forest district office.

Solar Energy

Solar panels to produce electricity will be permitted for leased campsites where commercial electric service is not available.

The solar panels must be attached to a structure on the lease and permission from the district forester must be obtained prior to installation. Contact the local forest district for permission.

Electric solar power may only be generated to provide electricity for private use at the campsite. You cannot sell any generated electricity. Solar systems that utilize water are not permitted.