Guest post by Kyle Ryan
Mild days and brisk evenings mean the outdoors is open for business! It’s the best time to pack up the tent and explore the many state parks across the country. But with more than 10,000 state parks to choose from, how do you pick the right one for your weekend getaway?
Here are the top 10 state parks for fall camping across the country with special attention focused on the changing of the colors.
1. Allegany State Park, New York
Autumn is all about the changing of the leaves and there’s no more spectacular view than in New England. Allegany State Park offers the autumn spectacle in addition to an idyllic lake. Its 649 camping sites include more than 300 cabins.
2. Hungry Mother State Park, Virginia
This is another park with great autumn colors and a serene lake. Located in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, the park offers spaces for tent and RV camping as well as cabins. The unusual name, Hungry Mother, comes from an old Native American legend.
3. Fall Creek Falls State Park, Tennessee
Breathtaking any time, this huge park is especially so when the leaves turn. It’s known for its splendid waterfalls and backpacking trails. You’ll find more than 200 RV and tent sites along with deep forest primitive camping.
4. Harris Beach State Park, Oregon
Watch the foliage turn in the forest and the ocean break on the rocks at this diamond in the Northwest Pacific Coast. The park has 152 campsites for both RVs and tents.
5. Pedernales State Park, Texas
Located near Austin in the rugged and beautiful Texas Hill Country, the park offers 82 sites for RV, tents, and primitive camping. Tubing on the Pedernales River is a favorite activity.
6. Devil’s Den State Park, Arkansas
Nestled in the Ozarks, the park puts on a brilliant show in autumn. Devil’s Den offers 146 campsites ranging from full service to rustic, and rustic 1930s-era cabins along its trails.
7. Tettegouche State Park, Minnesota
Located on Lake Superior, this park offers both shore and fall foliage. It has 70 campsites, both primitive and with amenities. The sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Despite its northern location, the park is open year-round, making its cozy cabins popular.
8. Golden Gate Canyon State Park, Colorado
Not far from Denver, Golden Gate Canyon is prime for viewing the changing of the aspens. It has more than 130 sites for both RV and primitive camping along with yurts and cabins. The stocked trout ponds are a favorite.
9. Calaveras Big Trees State Park, California
Famous for its giant sequoia trees, this park has 129 campsites and a few rental cabins. The North Grove guided hikes is a popular attraction and snowshoes are available in the event of snow.
10. Cloudland Canyon State Park, Georgia
The gorgeous fall colors here on only half the show. This park at Lookout Mountain has canyons that plunge 1,000 feet, waterfalls, and cascading creeks. It has more than 100 campsites as well as yurts and cottages.
This is a just sampling of the hundreds of great state parks where you’ll find the panoramic colors of fall. Take the family out to enjoy nature’s very own spectacle.
Kyle Ryan is an outdoorsman who loves photographing everything in nature. He spends most of the year traveling and saves money by camping at the best spots around the country.