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  1. Default Camping American Southwest

    as the title of the thread implies, my family and I will be visiting the American southwest this summer. Due to budget constraints I had planned on camping in National Parks but am now reading lists of all sorts of nasty creatures I might run into. Is it safe to camp in this area? Could anyone give advice or tips? Thank you much!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Designated camping

    Hello and welcome to the RTA forums !

    Many thousands of people camp in designated areas in the National parks each year with no problems at all so as long as you follow any guidelines/rules, such as using metal storage containers for food etc and keep your site clear of discarded food wrappers etc in bear country you will be fine.
    I doubt you will come face to face with any nasty creatures at all, but if you did they are most likely to be the ones in the tent next door ;-) [Ha ha !]

    Your biggest problem now is going to be trying to find available sites in the busier parks if you wanted to pre book, if you don't you will have to get into the parks early morning and try to secure a "walk in" site. If you are planning on visiting a number of parks [usually 4 or more] then the $80 annual pass might save you money. You will find all the park and camping info on the NPS website. There are some free weekends this summer so be sure to check those dates against yours.

    If there is anything else we can help you with let us know !

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

    Default Be aware, not scared

    Quote Originally Posted by jdustin View Post
    I had planned on camping in National Parks but am now reading lists of all sorts of nasty creatures I might run into. Is it safe to camp in this area?
    While the reality is that any time you venture out of the house you have the potential of running into some nasty creatures (skunks, rats, bears, er, wildebeest?), more often than not you will find that these and others will try to avoid humans unless there is a chance they can get an easy meal.

    Only once in the past 20 years have I had any trouble with animals while camping, and this was because I didn't put my food in a safe place.

    Don't fret over these lists that you have found. A list of negatives can be found for just about anything, but the positives will usually far outweigh any potential nastiness that you could conceivably encounter.

  4. Default

    thanks for the help guys...though it seems to have become a mute point as the ladies involved in this adventure have now insisted on hotel accommodations, due to the presence of scorpions in the area. Just for my own interest-does anyone know how likely one is to encounter these critters? and a thanks for the tip as well as a suggestion to any other readers-and all-access national parks pass is well worth the $80 charge. Cheers!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Likely Doesn't Really Matter

    Scorpions are by and large nocturnal creatures and seek shade, shelter and generally hide during the day. In my 17 years of living in Arizona, I've never seen one during my hikes and walks. The one instance of a scorpion bite that I personally know of happened to my brother when he was staying at one of the fancier resort hotels here in Tucson. He was stung in his bed, where the scorpion had taken refuge for the day, when he lay down to take a nap. Fortunately, most of the deadliest species of scorpions are restricted to North Africa, and the varsities found in the southwestern U.S. are not particularly dangerous to adults. Generally, only stings to children or that induce severe swelling or strain even require treatment.


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