Just because autumn is near does not mean camping has to end! There are plenty of opportunities to go camping during the fall; you just have to be prepared for cooler temps and shorter hours during the day. The Wilderness Society offers several tips to keep in mind for a fun and enjoyable fall camping trip.
Some campsites have reduced fees after labor day. Find out if there are reduced fee campsites by checking campgrounds and forests online. It is also a good idea to make a checklist of everything needed since fall camping requires a few more things to stay warm.
Bring plenty of clothing to layer up with: start with a base layer like a wicking thermal underlayer, which helps to keep moisture away from the skin. Fleece, wool, and synthetic materials are suggested to bring along. Bring other things to keep warm, like a beanie, water-resistant jacket, mittens, extra socks and shoes, and a winter jacket.
When it comes to staying warm, it is best to move around by doing something like jumping jacks or taking a short walk around the campsite. Carbs and fats help keep your body warm, so don’t worry about burning those calories; all the extra outdoor activities will help burn them off. Having a snack before bed can help you keep warm throughout the night. Down booties can help keep your feet toasty warm at night.
As far as cooking goes, it is best to bring extra fuel since cooking things takes longer with cooler temperatures. Make easy-to-make dishes or one-pot meals a little easier for yourself. It is also wise to bring lots of water; it is easier to dehydrate in dry and cool weather. This means you may need to stock up more than you would during the summer.
Many species have mating rituals in the fall, and some can become aggressive if disturbed. Be sure to keep your distance if you encounter any animals. Never bring food into your tent; pack food in a bear-resistant container at some campsites or hang food from a tree.
Let others know where you are in case you get lost. Don’t be afraid to retreat if necessary; camping is supposed to be fun, not miserable.