I see a lot of threads on this site asking about squatting on BLM land and in National Forests and Wilderness areas. Having a bit of experience at this sort of thing I’d like to offer a little information and advice.
Firstly, yes, you can camp in one spot for a maximum of 14 days. But then you must move to a different BLM, National Forest, or Wilderness District and can’t return to the old district for a period of 30 days. So in practice you’re going to need a minimum of three different districts to migrate between in order to be in compliance with federal law.
This sounds easy but isn’t always. Districts are often separated by many miles and the BLM, National Forestry, and Parks Service have intentionally drawn district boundaries in such a way as to make it difficult to easily migrate between them. They are also not eager to share maps showing the different districts and boundaries. But you can find them on the Internet.
So. My advice to anyone wanting to squat on federal land for an extended period of time is to first (1) get a national district map (2) goto the website Wilderness.net and (3) Google Earth or Maps. These three sources of info will enable you to scout for an area within a National Forest or National Wilderness area that meets the following critical criteria:
Heavy tree growth
Relatively easy terrain
Free flowing WATER
Abundant small game
Within 2-3 days hiking of town with hospital and outdoor supply stores
As far removed as possible from main hiking trails and Park Service dirt roads
Of all the aforementioned, finding suitable camps sites far removed from dirt roads and Rangers is the most difficult to attain. But it can be done.
I’ve spent extended periods of time (years) squatting in National Forests and National Wilderness Areas without migrating between districts and living in permanent lean-to shelters. It just requires some in-depth research on the front end before you go tramping off into the woods.
It also requires a highly experienced Bushcrafter and survivalist with the proper top drawer equipment. Because what we’re talking about is thriving in remote wilderness areas for extended periods of time. Not weekend camping or short range hiking. So if you lack the experience, skills and equipment DO NOT attempt becoming a mountain man or woman until you’ve invested the time, trouble and expense of mastering the proper skills. Otherwise you’ll just end up critter scat.