Camping may feel like an activity best left for spring and summer. But lovers of the great outdoors don’t need to wait for warmer seasons to enjoy their next camping trip. Still, finding a good all-season campground is a little more complicated than just an online search for “year-round campgrounds near me.” So pack up your gear, and let’s explore the secrets to finding that perfect campground for your off-season adventure.
What Is a Year-Round Campground?
A year-round campground is a campground open 12 months a year (or close to it). No matter when you plan your trip, you can rest assured that an all-season campground will be open and ready to receive you.
The concept of a year-round campground contrasts with other seasonal campgrounds, which may only remain open a few months of the year. This may be due to extreme hot or cold weather or simply a lack of demand.
Are There Many Campgrounds Open Year-Round?
Not all campgrounds remain open all year. However, in many parts of the country, you can find at least some year-round campgrounds near you. Some will operate as usual just about every day of the year. Other campgrounds may shut down some amenities during the slow season but remain open for campers.
What Are the Best States for Year-Round Camping?
Unless you particularly enjoy extreme temperatures, it makes sense that states in the extreme north and south of the country tend to have fewer year-round campgrounds. This means you shouldn’t expect many options in states like Alaska, Maine, Minnesota, and large parts of Arizona, Nevada, and the desert southwest.
States with more temperate climates tend to have the most options for year-round campgrounds. These include much of the south, Texas, Florida, and parts of the mid-Atlantic. With milder winters and warm but generally tolerable summers, these areas make it easy to camp no matter the month.
Are Year-Round Campgrounds Expensive?
However, those camping in the off-season may find these campgrounds more affordable than in the more popular times of the year. Part of this is simple supply and demand; fewer campers in the low season means owners drop rates to bring in price-conscious visitors. You may also have access to fewer amenities, resulting in lower rates.
If you want to save money, try booking longer-term stays. Most year-round campgrounds will offer a discount for weekly or monthly visits compared to the regular per-night price.
How to Find Year-Round Campgrounds Near Me
So what are the best ways to find these year-round campgrounds near me? Fortunately for off-season campers, you have many great resources available. Here are the ones everyone should know.
1. Use the RV LIFE App
RV LIFE is one of the easiest to use and most comprehensive RVing resources out there. The app features an extensive campground map, which you can apply filters to to find year-round campgrounds near you. Additionally, you can check reviews and learn more about the picks, so you won’t have any surprises. The app also provides RV-specific GPS directions to keep your rig off roads it can’t handle. It’s a worthwhile download for all campers and RVers, no matter the season.
Pro Tip: Want to camp year-round for free? Use these Best Boondocking Apps and Websites for Amazing Free Camping.
2. Have a Camping Road Atlas That’s Up-to-Date
You can also go old school and check out a physical camping road atlas. This resource will be available whenever you need it; no internet or cell service required. Regional atlases may provide more detail, while national ones will cover more ground for cross-country trips. Just remember to buy a new one every year or two; outdated information from old editions could cause trouble for your camping plan.
3. Kampgrounds of America (KOA)
Kampgrounds of America is one of the largest private campground companies in the nation. You can find many year-round KOA campgrounds near you. Would-be campers can search on their website or through the KOA app.
Due to KOA’s extensive resources, they can operate many parks in the off-season. Smaller campground companies may simply shut down. While KOAs will vary in amenities and quality, you can rest assured the all-season campground you pick has the backing of a reputable organization.
4. Research Private Parks in Your Area
National directories and resources are great, but they can miss some great options offered by local private sites. If you want to visit a specific park, call or stop by to see whether they operate year-round. Who knows, you may find a gem of a campground and avoid the crowds simultaneously.
5. Download The Dyrt Camping App
Another excellent app for finding year-round campgrounds near me is The Dyrt. It boasts more than 44,000 campground listings, user tips and photos, and discounts for particular services or campgrounds. Many campgrounds even allow you to book directly through the app, avoiding a time-consuming call or frustrating, out-of-date website.
6. Good Sam’s Campsite Search Engine
Good Sam is one of the most respected names in the RV world. It just makes sense that it would have excellent resources for campgrounds of all types. The company operates a search engine that makes combing through the thousands of options simple. Good Sam members can use this to find suitable affiliated parks. And you don’t need a membership to search for year-round campgrounds near you.
Pro Tip: Learn more about what a Good Sam membership has to offer. We uncovered what you need to know about Good Sam TravelAssist.
How Long Can You Stay at a Campground?
For private campgrounds, this is up to you and the campground owner. In most cases, if you don’t cause any trouble and pay your bills, many private operators will let you stay as long as you want. However, those planning to stay more than a week or two should check with the campground beforehand to ensure they accept long-term stays.
For public land, the maximum length of time will vary based on the rules. This can be as short as a few days or as long as several weeks or months. For example, on most dispersed campgrounds on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land, campers can stay up to 14 days at a single site within a 28-day period.
At that point, they’ll need to move to another location outside a 25-mile radius of their previous one. When in doubt, reach out to the local, state, or national entity that operates the campground.
Enjoy RV Camping 365 Days a Year
While most campers stick to the warmer, more comfortable months, camping in the off-seasons can provide unique experiences and help you avoid pesky crowds. As you can see, there are many ways to answer the question, “where are the best year-round campgrounds near me?” You can use easy and informative apps, old-school atlases, or just call around. You now have the tools to find the perfect campground, no matter the weather.
Don’t pay too much for year-round camping! Find out: Are Campgrounds Price Gouging?
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