Nothing compares to the fall season. Weather is cooling down in most places, roads, and highways slow down a bit, and the leaves are changing colors. It’s the perfect combination for car campers who are in search to get away on a weekend road trip. If you’re geared up and ready to get out of town and beneath the stars this fall season, we’ve compiled the top fall camping destinations that are driveable from most locations. Starting from the west coast and heading east, here are the top fall camping destinations for drivers.
Silver Falls State Park Silverton, Oregon
Located near the town of Silverton, if you’re searching for a west coast road trip destination, this state park is a fantastic spot to roll up and pitch a tent. Hike through the many trails and discover mountainous waterfalls that make for amazing photo ops with the autumn leaves exploding in color in the backdrop.
Visitors can also bring their bikes to hit the bike paths, take guided horseback rides, or kick back and enjoy nature’s silence in one of the 43 campsites or 14 cabins on site. There is also water and electricity hookups for RV and van travelers. The Pacific Northwest is a phenomenal fall destination for road tripping campers and Silver Falls has all the amenities for a fun getaway out of the city or suburbs.
Jolley’s Ranch Campgrounds Springville City, Utah
For RV travelers or car campers looking for stunning views and peace and quiet in the state of Utah, Springville City is a great stop if you’re getting some fall time R&R. With up to 57 campsites to choose from, this ranch setting is located just West of Utah Lake. It’s got everything from volleyball courts to BBQ pits, so travelers can hike the hilly trails while watching the leaves change colors across acres of preserved land.
With spacious campsites and all the amenities, Jolley’s Ranch is the ideal spot for family camping and photographers looking to take landscape shots from higher vantage points in the hills.
Saddlehorn Campground Fruita, Colorado
Searching for wide-open spaces with amazing views. Whether you’re traveling out west or heading from the west coast, east; the Saddlehorn Campground outside of Fruita, CO is favored by car campers and fall time travelers.
Explore the backcountry because this campsite is only minutes away from the Colorado National Monument. The amount of color-changing trees are limited around this gorgeous canyon, but if you’re craving the perfect sunrise or sunset photo the valley shots available at this campsite are unforgettable. For the traveling hikers who are seeking phenomenal views and a beautiful night sky, this Colorado camping destination is a wonderful place with even better camping weather come fall time.
Gulpha Gorge Campground Hot Springs, Arkansas
Ready to break away from your home or condo and get outside where the hills and streams flow in Arkansas? Hot Springs, Arkansas during the fall time is a must-stop for road travelers seeking quiet and comfortable camping. Pull into one of the many paved camping spots and enjoy the colorful tree cover as well as the picturesque streams that cut right through the steep Ozark Hills.
There are bike paths and sidewalks for dog walkers and bicyclists, and if you and your friends want to get a fire going at night to keep warm, there are a handful of fire pits to sit by. Gulpha Gorge gives travelers the perfect valley type atmosphere with miles of trails to wander and explore. The river water may be too cold to swim and frolic in during the fall, but you won’t break a sweat while hanging around outside watching the leaves fall around your campsite.
Pisgah National Forest Appalachian Mountains, North Carolina
Are you taking a road trip and you’re driving from the midwest or east coast? The Appalachian Mountains in North Carolina are ground zero for camping among the orange and red leaf foliage. With amazing hikes to mile-high vantage points that look over thousands of acres of fall tree colors, this is the perfect couples getaway for those who want to enjoy the outdoors before winter arrives.
The Pisgah National Forest provides campers with all the enjoyable activities like horseback riding, scenic driving views, fishing, hunting, biking, ATV trail riding, and bird watching. You’ll never run out of things to do in the North Carolina Mountains and Pisgah is a top destination in North Carolina.
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Toward the tail end of the Appalachian Trail, Shenandoah National Park is a popular getaway for travelers who are searching for nearby camping along the east coast. With hilly wooded views and vegetation that provides the crisp fall family pictures you’ve been dying to take all year, this national park is one to remember.
Take on scenic drives through nature just a few miles outside of D.C and explore the many running trails that go through the park. The fall is perfect weather for rock climbing and hiking, and visitors can even check the yearly fall report on the national park website. Not feeling like camping outside? This park offers lodges as well as picnic tables for the people who are just driving through and wish to eat under the changing leaves. For east coasters looking for a relaxing getaway, Shenandoah National Park is a must stop.
Green Mountain National Forest, Vermont
For the outdoorsy drivers who are seeking a campsite in the northeast, Green Mountain National Forest in Vermont is a dreamy get away during the fall season. Tackle the bike and hiking trails, go fly fishing, or go backcountry camping and stay in one of the long-distance hiking shelters or set up camp around one of the provided fire pits.
This national forest offers an amazing array of wildlife and birdlife to witness atop the amazing tree changing colors. Fall time is freezing in the northeast, so come prepared with the right clothing and sleeping bags suited for freezing nighttime temperatures.
Baxter State Park, Maine
The state of Maine is hands down probably one of the best places to witness fall trees shed their leaves before winter. Baxter State Park is a protected slice of wilderness that has given campers hundreds of campsites as well as amazing hiking trails to wander with your loved ones. The unique thing about this campsite is the natural water resources that are available to campers through spigots.
Fall time is the best time too because not only because of the beautiful hilly landscape of colorful trees, but nearby are pumpkin patches and cider stands that truly set the tone for the fall season. If you’re traveling the northeast come fall, Baxter State Park should be a top choice on your itinerary.
Drive safe this fall on your camping excursions
Even though the fall in most places can be beautiful and picturesque, the weather can change for the worst at times and it’s best to drive while prepared. Learn how to keep your car safe and prepared before winter hits by reading our winter driving tips and be sure to always visually inspect your headlights before your next long-distance drive. Foggy conditions can wipe across the highways or in the mountains, so it’s best to ensure your fog lights and high-beam headlights are in fully functional order.
If you want to bring your car in to a professional because you need a replacement or check up, see who’s best for the job and learn how you can benefit with a headlights upgrade.