Despite the dropping temperatures and changing conditions, there is still plenty of time to camp/hike/explore without putting some boards on your feet (AKA skis, snowshoes, etc.) In fact, this is our very favorite time to camp and hike (if you haven’t noticed that from previous posts….) The crowds are quieter, the bugs are non-existent, the tent doesn’t get super hot throughout the day and the views are stunningly crystal clear.
A few tips for fall camping (especially when it means cooler temperatures!)
- Bring plenty of hot drinks (and not just hot chocolate which also means a sugar rush!) Try tea, hot Tang (yes, still sugary…but no caffine…), and milk warmed up (you won’t have to worry about it staying cold!)
- Dress in layers (here’s a post I wrote over at Sierra Trading Post about layering up kids – totally can be applied to cold-weather camping too!)
- Make sure to bring sleeping pads to go under your bags (tip: a blow-up mattress does NOT keep you warm; you are better off with a stack of blankets if you do not have a sleeping pad.)
- Do a fall photo scavenger hunt (Debi over at Go Explore Nature has some awesome ideas!)
- Plan on moving (hiking, walking, jumping, etc.) to get that blood pumping in the cold
- Plan on it being about 10 degrees colder than you expect. Better too much gear (especially if you are car camping) than not enough.
Check out some of the gear that we love for fall hiking/camping (recently reviewed on the blog):
Coleman’s CPZ 6 Double Edge LED Flashlight Lantern $69.99: A GREAT lantern for car camping. The LED lantern works at three different strengths AND you can take out the removable flashlight from the interior of the lantern to use for quick trips or smaller jobs. Lights our tent and campsite up easily. We bring it with us every time! Wish we had rechargeable batteries, but it seems to work for quite a while before needing to change them.
Coleman’s Pack-Away Outdoor Folding Table $69.99: Another Coleman favorite we use both camping and at home. While it isn’t the most sturdy table ever, it does suit our needs. Folding out to 32 x 48 inches, and weighing only 12 pounds, it easily sits our family of 4. Folds down easily to 32×24 inches and stows in a narrow space. Note: This table is not heat resistant, so wouldn’t be a good cooking table, but is great for eating!
Do you choose to camp in the fall? What do you love most about it? I would love to hear your fall camping tips!
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