The temperatures and humidity might keep you away from the southern states during the summer, but there are plenty of campsites you won’t want to miss now that it’s cooler. Be sure to add these seven parks to your must-visit camping spots this winter.
Palo Duro Canyon State Park
Enjoy the second largest canyon in the country at Texas’s Palo Duro Canyon State Park. They have campsites with utilities, backpack camping areas, tent sites and also equestrian sites. The park also has cabins on the canyon floor and rim. In addition to camping, you can explore 30 miles of trails by hiking, biking or on horseback.
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
Choose between multiple campsites at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in Arizona, with two campsites inside of the monument: Twin Peaks and Alamo campgrounds. Twin Peaks offers 34 tent-only sites — along with spots for RVs — and restrooms, solar showers and electricity hookups. If you want to get even more in-touch with nature, try the Alamo site. With four tent-only sites, you’ll be able to take in the scenic desert at this campground, which doesn’t allow fires and water isn’t provided. There are also group and backcountry camping sites at the park.
Joshua Tree National Park
With eight campgrounds inside of Joshua Tree National Park, winter is when things really pick up in this California destination. You’ll find plenty of plants and wildlife in this park, which has two distinct desert ecosystems. Spend the days hiking, biking, backpacking, viewing wildflowers or just exploring all the natural beauty the park has to offer.
Arches National Park
You’ll be hard pressed to find a campsite with more stunning rock formations than what you’ll see at Utah’s Arches National Park, which has more than 2,000 natural stone arches. The park’s campground, Devils Garden Campground, is 18 miles from the park entrance. Campsites are first-come, first-served from November to February. The park has hiking and biking trails, rock climbing, horseback riding and more.
DeSoto State Park
Located on Alabama’s scenic Lookout Mountain, DeSoto State Park offers more than 25 miles of hiking and biking trails, bouldering and breathtaking plants and wildlife, even during the winter months. All of their campgrounds, whether primitive or improved, are nestled in a wooded setting. There are also chalets and cabins if you decide to head indoors for a bit.
Buffalo National River in Arkansas
Whether you’re looking for a primitive campground or more developed ones with water and electricity, you’ll find them at Arkansas’s Buffalo National River park. The park gained International Dark Sky Park status in 2019, making it the perfect place to camp out and gaze at the stars. You can also enjoy fishing, hiking, horseback riding and other activities during your stay.
Death Valley National Park
It won’t feel like winter if you camp at California’s Death Valley National Park. There are actually few campgrounds open there during the summer because of the extreme heat. Known to be the hottest, lowest and driest national park, there’s still plenty of nature and wildlife to be found there. You can hike the canyons, backpack, bike or stargaze during your visit.
Camp in comfort
Find everything you’ll need for your camping trip this winter at Outdoors Geek.
From backpacks and tents to sleeping bags and apparel, you’ll find it in our store at 4431 Glencoe St. in Denver.