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  1. Default reserving campsites

    How risky is it not to book campsites in advance for travelling in July?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default The sound of one hand clapping?

    There's no way to answer that question in any general terms.

    If you are looking to camp at the Grand Canyon on the 4th of July weekend, you're probably not going to find a campsite without a reservation.

    If you are looking for a place to camp within 50 miles of Colorado Springs on a Wednesday night in July, it shouldn't be too hard to find a place to set up camp.

    There are just way way way too many variables to answer this question. It depends on the specific area, the kinds of amentities you are looking for, the number of sites available, the day of the week, etc.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Time and place

    I concur with Michael -

    what type of camp site are you looking for? What is the location? Is your time near a holiday, in a popular area?

    Tent locations are usually easier to find than RV spots at this time of year, though July 4th and the few days around it are an exception.

    If you will be traveling later in the month, to an out of the way location, it's generally not very risky at all.

  4. Default

    Sorry......i realize that question was pretty broad. We'll be driving all over...AZ, NM, TX, LA, TN, IL, SD, MT and will be camping in a tent. So...I guess we'll plan to make reservations for July 4th and leave the rest open.

  5. #5

    Default That should work

    You're spot on with your plan to book for July 4th - and maybe a day either side of that too? - but the rest of the time you should be good. Most of us here will simply roll into town and find a campground or motel when we get there. Sometimes though you may want a little peace of mind so why not get yourself a copy of Woodalls Guide, select a campground the night before, then ring ahead to check availability or book a place?

    You may also find these links helpful:
    Reserve America

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default Just the hot spots

    I almost never make camping reservation. The only exception is when I'm going on a weekend and I know I want to be at a specific place that will fill up unless I reserve.

    I don't think I've ever actually made a campground reservation for one of my long distance roadtrips.

    I've even found campsites on July 4th and on Memorial Day, without prebooking, so there are almost always options available. The key on busy days is to find the smaller more out of the way facilities, places like county parks or National Forest Service campgrounds, that don't get the attention that some state and national parks get. Also remember, if you are in a National Forest, you can usually can go with Dispersed camping (camping not in an organized campground), just remember you often will have to hike in with your gear, and you won't have facilities like trash cans or restrooms.

  7. Default I think you've got it all right..

    My experience has been that if you're looking for a campground in a limited availability or high demand area (such as a campground right on the beach, or inside a high demand national park) you'll probably want to have a reservation. This is particularly true on holiday weekends and on the weekends in the summers.

    But if you're staying in more out of the way places, or during the week, you can usually find a spot. But you may want to start looking about noonish for the evening.

    A good compromise on this is to give somewhere a call, either the morning of the trip or the previous day, if you have a pretty good idea of where you're going to want to stay -- particularly if you think it might be busy.

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