Tips for Camping in the Spring

LionWe’re creeping up on spring here in Northwest Arkansas, which typically means warmer temperatures, blossoms on the trees, and a few more rain puddles on the ground. Spring is a welcome sight after the winter months, and as great as it is to have different seasons, a change in the weather means a change in how you go camping.

Needless to say, camping in the summer is way different from camping in the winter. The type of camping gear you need to bring will change from season to season. But camping in the summer or winter is often easier than camping in the buffer seasons. That’s because you know exactly what you’re getting during the summer and winter months, but camping in the spring is a little less predictable.

Spring is a great time to go camping, however. Unpredictability just means you need to be more prepared. Here are some tips for camping in the spring that can help you stay comfortable and equipped for whatever comes your way.

Don’t be fooled by warmer temperatures.

Sure it’s warmer during the days, but it can still get pretty cold at night. A shorts and T-shirt kind of day can still call for a 20 degree sleeping bag once the sun goes down. Layering is important in any season, and spring is certainly no exception.

  • Wear a good base layer, insulating mid layer, and outer shell during the day. This can help you regulate your body temperature depending on changing temperatures and activity levels.
  • It’s also important to bring ample insulation as it can still get quite cold at night.

Be prepared for spring showers.

Arkansas usually gets the most precipitation during the spring months. Be sure to check the forecast before planning your trip. But forecasts aren’t always 100% accurate. Bring a tarp no matter what the weatherman says.

A tarp can provide extra protection from an unexpected rain shower, or it can be used as a ground cover if your campsite is soggy from previous storms. Also keep in mind that more precipitation means damp firewood. Even if rain isn’t in the forecast, be prepared to have a hard time finding dry wood, and a back up plan if you can’t get a fire going. Bring a reliable firestarter and some dry firewood if a campfire is necessary.

Never forget:

  • Rain jacket
  • Dry bags to protect clothing, electronics, etc.
  • Waterproof pants, water resistant pants, or quick drying synthetic pants
  • Waterproof boots or shoes for water-logged trails and treacherous puddles.
  • Extra socks

Remember that wool or synthetic layers are ideal in soggy conditions as they will provide insulation even when wet.

In like a lion out like a lamb.

That’s the old adage about March. In addition to varying temperatures and plenty of rainfall, spring can bring some gusty winds as well. A sunny 50 degree day might sound pleasant, but it can be downright chilly if that wind is cutting through. Wear appropriate insulation – or a jacket with windstopper – and choose your campsite wisely. Finding a camp site that naturally blocks the wind is ideal, but you can build a wind screen with a well placed tarp.

Don’t let them bug you.

You definitely have fewer insects to contend with during the spring than in the summer, but you may still encounter bugs while camping in the spring. Make sure you carry bug spray to keep those pesky mosquitoes at bay.

For any of your camping needs – spring or otherwise – stop by the store and let us help you find the gear that you need!

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