5 Great Winter Camping Destinations in the US

If you love the spectacular winter scenery, not to mention fewer crowds, then the winter season should not deter you from enjoying your favorite outdoor activity. There are many locations to choose from when it comes to winter camping destination.

Best Winter Camping Destinations in US

In this article, we have highlighted some of the best places to camp in the US during the winter season! All of them offer a warmer climate, except Mt. Hood. During the winter months, you get to decide: will you escape a colder climate for a warmer one? Or will you seek out more snow and head to an area that offers a full lineup of winter sports and recreation?

1. Padre Island National Seashore, Texas

This is a great winter camping destination, especially for bird lovers. You will find numerous bird species here and the location is open throughout the year. Padre Island is also home to
the longest undeveloped barrier island in the world, at 70 miles in length. Dunes, lagoons and beautiful beaches are characteristic of this location. There are five campgrounds here and the most popular ones are Bird Island Basin and Malaquite campgrounds.

Bird Island Basin Campground
Photo Credit: NPS

2. Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida

Florida is another very popular winter camping destination. The weather and temperatures here are warm compared to other places in the US. There are many locations to visit in Florida and one of our favorite places is the Dry Tortugas National Park. This National Park is comprised of of seven islands and you have to catch a boat from Key West to get there. I think this factor makes it even more exciting and gives it such a secluded, exotic feel!

In the winter, expect fewer crowds. The average daily temperature is above 65 degrees, so you will not have to worry about a frigid climate. Do not expect to find many amenities here as this is primarily a primitive camping destination. Kayaking, water sports, stunning beaches, amazing scenery, marine life and bird watching makes this an amazing winter camping destination.

florida keys national park
Photo Credit: NPS

3. Joshua Tree National Park, California

This location is open year round and you will rarely find snow here, even in the winter season. Joshua Tree National Tree is the perfect spot for people who love extreme outdoor sports. There are rugged mountains and terrain to explore, vast deserts, and hundreds of hiking trails. If you love RV camping, this is a great destination to consider visiting during the winter season. The vast spaces, the clear skies and the strange trees will intrigue and excite you at the same time.

joshua tree national park
Photo Credit: NPS/Lian Law

4. Mt. Hood National Forest, Oregon

If you love the snow and snow sports, Mt. Hood National Forest is a camping destination worth considering. There are numerous campgrounds to choose from here. Some offer certain amenities while others do not, so check in advance. You may also be required to obtain a permit before camping in this location. Activities you can engage in here include skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, sledding and snow tubing.

Due to the extreme weather conditions around Mt. Hood, you’ll likely leave the RV at home, skip the tent, and call a cozy cabin your home away from home if you are there in the winter. If you opt to head to Mt. Hood in the summer months, there are plenty of options for campgrounds.

mt hood oregon

5. Death Valley National Park, California

This is the hottest place on earth in the summer but winters are a good bit cooler. This makes camping in Death Valley National Park in the winter an amazing experience. It is a dry and vast place, with over 3 million acres ground coverage. You can enjoy spectacular hiking trails and other outdoor adventures here. Death Valley has a very diverse landscape. Do not expect to find
amenities while camping within the park. There are private campgrounds close to the park, if you do not enjoy primitive camping. At the Wildrose campground, you can enjoy pit toilets, fire grills and fire pits. (Note: there are size restrictions due to road access limitations. No vehicles longer than 25 feet are permitted – that length is vehicle + RV.)

death valley night sky
Photo Credit: NPS

What are your favorite winter camping destinations? Do you head for where it’s warm? Let us know your favorite spots – leave a comment below! 


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