What’s the Best Season To Go Camping In?

Spring, summer, fall, or winter? Which season is the best for camping—or is there even a clear winner? We list the pros and cons of each season here.

Have you ever wondered what the best season to go camping in is? While you can camp in all four seasons, each season comes with pros and cons. To help you choose the ideal season for your outdoor adventures, we list the benefits and downsides of spring, summer, fall, and winter camping here.

Spring

The trees are regrowing their leaves, the flowers are beginning to bloom, and the air is crisp but warm. Spring is one of the prettiest times to go camping—but is it the most convenient?

Pros

  • Campsites aren’t very crowded
  • Fresh, colorful scenery
  • Great weather for activities like running and hiking

Cons

  • It can be chilly outside
  • Water may still be too cold for water sports
  • Allergens are in full swing

Summer

With the kids on break, summer is one of the most common times families hit the campgrounds. There’s plenty to do and see in this hot, lively season, but the heat—among other things—can put a damper on your trip.

Pros

  • Best season for water sports
  • Warm weather, even in the evening hours
  • No mud, which means stable campgrounds
  • Busy season means more hosted activities
  • A more flexible schedule with work and school

Cons

  • Overheating and sunburns are risks
  • Campgrounds will be crowded and noisy
  • Campsites are more expensive
  • Lots of wild animals and bugs about

Fall

Fall’s mild weather and gorgeous red-orange scenery make it an extremely popular season for camping. But fall camping isn’t always sunshine and rainbows.

Pros

  • Breathtaking views
  • Temperatures are usually mild
  • Less busy than summer camping
  • More affordable

Cons

  • Cooler weather means you’re more likely to catch a cold
  • Weather can be unpredictable at times

Winter

Winter is the least popular time of year to go camping, but don’t write it off. There are plenty of reasons to give winter camping a try. While brumal temperatures and stillness are definite cons, the season makes up for its shortcomings elsewhere.

Pros

  • You can secure prime campsites
  • No pesky bugs to deal with
  • Easier to spot wildlife like birds and deer
  • Nice and quiet
  • Unobstructed view of the stars at night

Cons

  • It’s cold, and you’ll be more at risk of frostbite and hypothermia
  • You’ll need to invest in better, more insulating gear
  • Fewer activities to try

So what’s the best season to go camping in? It all comes down to personal preference. You’ll get a different answer depending on who you ask! Based on the information we provided, which season appeals to you the most?

What To Know When RV Camping in the Winter

Camping is a good time, but even with an RV, you’ll want to know how to stay safe in the winter. Follow these cold-season RV camping tips to help you stay warm.

Camping in the winter is a unique and enjoyable experience. Few things feel better than cozying up to a campfire with the cold air around you. However, many campers make a dangerous mistake by assuming that their RV is warm and secure enough to keep them safe through the cold nights. So, before you head out into the woods, here are a few things to know when RV camping in the winter.

Install Proper Insulation

When you shut everything down for the night, your camper can start to get cold quickly without running heat. We suggest insulating everything before you head out. You can take detailed steps such as sealing the windows to more decorative steps such as putting thick rugs on the floor or hanging thicker curtains to block some of the cold air.

Make Sure Your RV Can Run

When camping in the winter, you will want to ensure your RV can run. In the event that your battery dies or you run out of gas, things can turn ugly fast. We suggest always having some spare gasoline on board and a way to give your battery a jump. We recommend converting your RV to lithium batteries if your vehicle still uses an older battery model to help increase its lifespan and reduce the chances of losing charge in colder temperatures.

Bring Helpful Supplies

When RV camping in the winter, it is vital to know the importance of packing some season-specific items in addition to traditional clothes and camping supplies. Before you head out, make sure you pack tire chains, a snow shovel, and something to help create traction in the event of ice or snow. A hairdryer is a helpful tool to bring on your camping trip to produce heat and help thaw things quickly and efficiently.

How To Prepare for Your Holiday Camping Trip

Camping outside is a great adventure, but camping during the holiday season is even more exciting. Here are a few things you need to do to prepare.

Tradition and the holiday season go hand in hand, but sometimes it’s more exciting to step outside the norm and do something different. You don’t have to break away from all your standard activities. Simply consider adding something new to the tradition—like a holiday camping trip. This excursion might be different from your other trips, so let us give you a hand. Here’s how to prepare for your holiday camping trip.

Find a Spot

If you’re a seasoned camper, you know the importance of a good spot. You want to find a location that is suitable for you and your family. There are a few things you need to consider. For starters, you’ll need to notify the authorities for that location, as you will probably need to obtain a camping permit.

Scope out a few locations and see what they offer. Look for things like what animals are in the area, a close water supply, and grounds spacious enough for your equipment. Additionally, you want to ensure your location is not too far away from a town or hospital in case of an emergency.

Track the Weather

Depending on where you travel, the weather might not be in your favor for your holiday trip. Of course, you can always bring along equipment to keep you shielded. However, it’s still best to keep a close eye on the weather leading up to the trip.

You’ll know what proper supplies to bring along. Consider items such as the following:

  • Clothes
  • Camping gear
  • Food and water supply

Get the Gear

This trip is a special occasion, so it calls for special equipment. Bring along your standard camping gear, but consider adding a few upgrades to the collection. Instead of the standard sleeping bag, get an inflatable mattress too. It will offer more comfort and support.

To make your sleeping arrangements even cozier, consider purchasing a truck roof tent. You’re still outside with this tent, but you’re not necessarily on the ground. And you’ll still get to see the big and bright stars deep in the heart of Texas.

Bring the Festivities

This might be the biggest point to remember. You need to bring the holiday festivities with you! After all, it’s not a holiday trip without them. Some decoration, presents, and holiday treats make the trip more memorable. But you don’t want to overcrowd your car or camper with too much stuff, so bring these items in moderation.

Holiday camping trips are the perfect way to reset and prepare yourself for the new year. Wherever your adventure takes you, we hope it’s full of holiday cheer!

What Every Camper Van Conversion Should Have

You can leave your ordinary life in the rearview when you learn what every camper van conversion should have to start your new life in the wilderness.

We all have thought about leaving modern civilization behind to live in the wilderness for a time or two. But the fantasy will come crashing down to reality if you don’t take the proper steps before becoming an outdoor person. Knowing what every camper van conversion should have ensures you have what it takes to live lavishly in Mother Nature.

Better Safe Than Sorry

Camper van living isn’t all that fun if you don’t have the necessary safety equipment. A carbon monoxide detector is a must inside your camper van. With all the fumes that could come from the vehicle and other appliances in the cabin, something that’s not easily detectable, such as carbon monoxide, could be a huge threat.

A fire extinguisher is another item you should have around if a fire breaks out. In a perfect world, the fire extinguisher will be nothing more than a piece of decor. However, you’ll be happy you have it if a fire does occur.

Keep the Energy Flowing

A camper van is versatile enough that there are various energy sources you can rely on. While many prefer using electricity and natural gas for their home, it’s not the best option for a camper van. Solar power for your camper van ensures you get the power you need without fiddling with cords and finding a plug-in.

Solar panels use sunshine to generate power. Electric currents pass from the solar panels to the charge controller through the solar wires. The controller regulates the voltage it receives to avoid a power spike, assuming you have the correct solar battery for the van. It is also beneficial to have a backup battery to store surplus power for later use.

Design the Best Kitchen

An integral part of van life is making the most of your limited space. That can be a serious challenge when configuring and designing the kitchen inside the vehicle. Other than the essential appliances, such as a range, refrigerator, and freezer, it’s nice to have a table to eat a meal on. A foldable table with aluminum legs is light but sturdy, making it the perfect addition to your van. And since it’s foldable, you can stow it away in any free crevasse.

Adaptable Storage Capabilities

If you store your items like a champion, you will get well-acquainted with Velcro and cargo nets. Velcro straps help create space by holding random things neat and orderly. It can hold anything from the wheel on a bike to curtains in the cabin, and they work much better than other tying devices. Additionally, cargo nets help you keep everything together without wasting space. You can even opt for the best of both worlds and get a cargo Velcro net, which is extremely handy.

Before you begin your off-the-grid lifestyle, you should know what every camper van conversion should have to ensure you have the bare necessities for comfortable living. Without a viable energy source, a well-designed kitchen, or proper storage, you could be in for a rough van life.

PIKES PEAK OR BUST

June 14, 2004 and we finally we are off to Colorado! Our route took us through Junction, Fort Stockton, and onward. Around Ft. Stockton, we noticed the engine was sputtering like water or trash in the gas as we had just filled up at Junction and had no earlier problem. We called Bill Cardell, with Flying Miata, and he helped track down part of the problem (and we did make it to his shop in Grand Junction). We were scared we would spend the night on the road but we made the first stop in Roswell, N.M.

When we finally made it to Bill’s Flying Miata shop he worked on it all day and found a bad connection on the 02 sensor. Very nice people and definitely came to our rescue.

Pikes Peak
Glen Coker at Pikes Peak

From Grand Junction, we drove to Glenwood Springs, took the cable car up to the top of the mountain, then spent a couple days around the area. The next night at Redstone, a tiny little town of one street we toured the Redstone Castle and took in some of the local cuisine. Great food!

From there, we took a scenic drive towards Crested Butte and ended up in Gunnison. Part of this drive was a bad decision on Glen’s part (who else?) as it was mostly meant for 4 wheelers. In Gunnison, we were offered free tickets to a Chuckwagon dinner complete with locals playing guitars and singing. It was definitely worth the price. The next night we went to a concert in the park.

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Things To Consider Before Living in a Camper

The idea of living off the grid and traveling from one landscape to another is a reality for many. Here are some things to consider before living in a camper.

Camping is quite a popular hobby that many people enjoy, and some love it so much they choose to live in their RVs. If you adore the great outdoors, you won’t find it surprising that nearly a million Americans live in campers full time. In fact, you might even desire to become one of the many whose backyards are wherever they choose them to be. While the idea of living in an RV is exciting, it is not something people go into lightly—here are some important things to consider before living in a camper.

Minimalistic Living

One thing experienced campers will tell you is that you must grow quite comfortable with minimalistic living and, at times, uncomfortable means. When traveling on the road, your vehicle will have significantly less water supply than you would expect at home, lasting two to three days at most. That is why you must learn how to use your water supply sparingly. As such, if you enjoy long showers, you might want to start taking shorter ones to acclimate yourself to the conditions on the road

Moreover, you must make peace with leaving things behind and only keeping that which is necessary. However, this doesn’t mean you must throw everything away. Often, many campers will have a home base or rent a storage center to store personal and important items and information they can’t take.

Internet Accessibility

Often, camping will find you in quite remote landscapes, and while that is the whole point, we must still be accessible. We cannot forgo the fact that we still have obligations to friends, family, or work. As such, you need to consider how you will attain high-speed internet access when in rural areas. Keep in mind that your family and friends want updates on your whereabouts, and in the event of an emergency, you must be able to contact authorities.

Mail Forwarding

One thing to consider before living in a camper is the fact that you will still need an address to receive mail. You won’t have to worry much about receiving your bills in the mail, as many people utilize online systems to pay their bills. However, the mail is not entirely obsolete, as you will need an address to receive important notices and documents. That is why, as you travel, you must continually have your mail forwarded. Many campers will forward their mail if they plan to stay in an area for about a week or two.

Top Reasons People Carry a Concealed Weapon While Hiking

The more prepared you are for your time outdoors, the better your hike. Learn the top reasons to carry a concealed firearm when hiking or backpacking.

Concealed carry helps keep you and your hiking party safe. Whether you’re in a remote area or somewhere more populated, a firearm can offer you protection and peace of mind. Learn the top reasons people carry a concealed weapon while hiking.

1. Protection From Wild or Violent Animals

One of the best reasons to carry a firearm while you hike or backpack is to fend off wild or violent animals. Fighting a wild animal with your bare hands isn’t a reliable option for securing your safety. Sometimes, just the loud sound of your firearm is enough to frighten a wild animal and prompt them to run away.

Even if you’re not facing a wild animal, encountering a violent domesticated pet is still dangerous. Every year, there are millions of dog bites from aggressive dogs in the US, and some of those cases prove fatal. Hopefully, you’ll never have to defend yourself from an aggressive animal, but if you do, a gun will help.

2. Protection From Human Aggressors

The next reason to carry a concealed weapon while hiking is to protect yourself from human aggressors. Whether you’re in a remote area or on a popular trail, stay aware of the people around you. While most people you encounter will be genuine outdoor enthusiasts such as yourself, some bad actors take advantage of trail conditions to attack people.

To increase your safety, hike in pairs and let a third party know about your plans. Also, stay visually alert and listen to your surroundings. If you wear earbuds, keep one out so that you can still hear clearly.

Learn to feel comfortable carrying a gun so that you can keep your weapon concealed from potential attackers. If someone chooses to attack you, you can defend yourself with your firearm.

3. Emergency Signaling

If you get lost or stranded in the wilderness, you’ll need all the help you can get to return to safety. Many times, you can’t rely on your cell phone in a remote area. You’ll need to signal for help.

Perhaps the most common distress signal is the signal fire. If you build a proper signal fire, you can attract attention from miles away. But in addition to this popular option, you can use your weapon to create an auditory signal.

Fire three spaced-out shots to signal distress. By spacing the shots five seconds apart, you help other people around your area identify the sound as a distress signal and identify the location it’s coming from.

Tips for Setting Up the Ultimate Campsite

When it comes to setting up the ultimate campsite, there are a few routes you can take. These tried-and-true methods will guarantee a fun and safe experience.

Camping isn’t for the faint of heart. If you’re planning on roughing it in the wild, you need a certain level of resilience. Picking up some necessary survival skills will set you up for a fun and exciting outdoor experience.

First, you need to know how to make your camping ground work for you. Setting up the ultimate campsite will save you from having a horrible adventure. Those new to the world of camping can use these tips to start on the right foot.

Get Off the Ground

There’s nothing wrong with sleeping on the ground. However, you’ll feel more at ease if you’re able to elevate your campsite. You can use a variety of tools and resources to get off the ground and create a more comfortable arrangement.

Bring an extra layer of sleeping material, like a cot or foam padding, so you don’t have to sleep in the dirt. If you want to get really fancy, invest in a truck camper and rest on your roof. Either way, make the most of your camping trip by setting yourself up for a good night’s sleep.

Build the Perfect Campfire

It’s not a real camping trip if you don’t maintain a fire. However, newcomers might not have the experience necessary to build the perfect campfire. You need this feature to stay warm, cook food, and keep the critters away.

Be sure to keep your fire a safe distance away from your campsite; you should also keep factors like wind and rain in mind so you don’t lose your hard work. Your tinder should be dead and dry, so collect plenty of sticks, twigs, grass, and leaves to keep your fire going.

Create a Stellar Kitchen

No campground is complete without an amazing kitchen. If you want to set up the ultimate campsite, you need a place to refuel. After a long day of hitting the trails and exploring the terrain, you’ll want an area to make all your favorite meals.

Bring a portable grill to cook lean meats and high-fiber veggies that provide plenty of nourishment. And assemble your meals downwind to avoid attracting predators. You should also hang your trash and food scraps from a tree away from your site so you don’t invite any unwanted guests.

If you do it right, camping could become your new favorite pastime. Use these tips to prepare for your adventure, and you’ll always have a good experience.

5 Common Causes of Wildland Fires To Avoid

Fires in the great outdoors are common and have many causes. People should take extreme caution to avoid these five causes as much as possible.

Nature is a beautiful thing to experience and impacts humanity in many ways. And just as nature affects us, we also affect it and cause harm. Wildfires are common occurrences in the natural world, with multiple factors that cause them to break out, both natural and human. People should do everything they can to avoid starting wildfires to help preserve nature and keep people safe.

Lightning

Lightning is a common natural cause of wildland fires. A lightning bolt is about 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit; when it strikes the ground, it burns any nearby objects. When lighting sets a patch of earth ablaze, that fire spreads with extreme heat and begins to take the land in a blazing sweep.

While lightning is a natural phenomenon, people can put away or cover fire-prone objects such as machines or metal wiring before a thunderstorm. Doing so can decrease the chance of lightning striking and causing a fire.

Hot Coals

Lots of people have BBQs in Texas, especially during the summer, and at some point, a person may dispose of the hot coals too quickly. A fire may start if the ashes from the coals make contact with the leaves in a tree or a pile of papers. Hot coals are especially dangerous in places such as parks where plenty of trees and bushes may catch fire. Make sure your coals are completely cool and don’t have any glowing red bits before you dispose of them.

Malfunctioning Machines

Our machines are susceptible to malfunctioning and short circuits, potentially producing wildfires. Factories and plants located in grasslands and forested areas may be at risk of a wildfire if they don’t have proper safety measures such as sprinklers and fire extinguishers. If dried leaves are present around burning machines, this may cause a type of wildland fire called a surface fire that burns along the surface of the ground.

Arson

Unfortunately, arson is another cause of wildland fires. When a person burns a house or building, the fire could spread to other buildings or parts of nature and cause a wildland fire. Arson occurs more often than you may think. Thankfully, we can prevent the fire from spreading with the proper safety protocols.

Improperly Built Campfires

It’s always important to practice campfire safety to ensure people remain safe while camping. Uncontrolled campfires are a common cause of wildland fires and are an immediate threat to forested areas. Learning proper campfire safety and having items like a pale of water will help you avoid dangerous fires that may put your life at risk.

There are many causes of wildland fires, and we should always be prepared for them. Practice safety and precaution as much as possible to prevent a fire from starting in your area.

The Most Helpful Tips When Camping in an RV

The great outdoors is a blast for a weekend camping trip. Those looking to camp with an RV may want to brush up on these helpful tips before heading out.

Everybody loves a good camping trip. Setting up your tent and cooking over an open fire is a common treat. However, sometimes you want to try camping with a little more comfort and accessibility. Here are some of the most helpful tips when camping in an RV that you can utilize on your next big trip.

Check Out the Campsite

Recreational vehicles come in all shapes and sizes, so it’s a good idea to learn a little bit about where you’re camping before you try to drive your RV out there. You’ll want to ensure your RV can safely reach the campsite and double-check that you will have room to set up camp around the parking space. Accounting for the size of your vehicle and the dimensions of the camping spot is essential before you make any reservations.

Ensure You Have Enough Power

You don’t need to concern yourself with this too much if your campground of choice has adequate hookups for your RV, but a proper power supply is essential when you’re boondocking out in the wilderness. Knowing how to conserve battery power in your RV ensures you don’t strand yourself in the middle of the woods. Additionally, it always helps to have a backup battery source.

Arrive Before Nightfall

Getting to your destination before the sun goes down is a valuable piece of advice no matter what form of camping you choose, but it’s an especially helpful tip when camping in an RV. When you arrive after nightfall, you’ll probably be tired and ready for bed, but you’ll still need to set up camp. Trying to properly park your RV in the dark and take care of any necessary hookups without sunlight is a hassle you don’t want to deal with. Even if it means waking up an hour earlier to get on the road, it’s a good idea to reach your destination during daylight hours.

Backpacking Bucket List: 4 Trips Everyone Should Try

Do you want to take a once-in-a-lifetime backpacking journey? Then you need to look at our bucket list for the hiking trips everyone needs to experience!

Few things can beat a backpacking trip through the wilderness and experiencing nature as it was meant to be enjoyed. If you’re looking for your next backpacking destination, check out our bucket list of the hiking trips everyone should try at least once.

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Essential Sun Protection for Summer Hikes

Are you looking for ways to protect yourself from the sun while hiking? Here are some examples of essential sun protection for summer hikes.

While the summertime sun is beautiful and provides light for all our fun seasonal activities, too much direct sunlight can be damaging to the skin. Therefore, taking the proper precautions when spending extended time out in the sun is important, especially when hiking. You should know general hot-weather hiking tips and how to stay safe when climbing in the mountains if that will also be part of your treks. Here are some examples of essential sun protection for summer hikes.

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