Did you know that more than 25 West Virginia State Parks offer camping? Whether you’re an experienced camper or looking to try something new, camping at a state park can be a simple and affordable alternative to other types of vacation accommodations. Interested in learning more? Here are four tips to help make your state park camping trip a success:
1. Choose the Right Tent
When choosing a tent, think about group size and whether you need space for gear or dogs. If you want to stand up when changing clothes, look for a tent with a tall peak height. If you’re over 6 feet or want additional space, consider a tent with a floor length of 90 inches.
Cabin-style tents feature room dividers and multiple doors that help families avoid climbing over each other for midnight bathroom breaks. Dome-style tents are stronger and withstand wind better than other styles. A tent’s pole structure determines how easy or hard it is to pitch. Virtually all modern family tents don’t require stakes to set up. Fewer poles allow for faster setup.
2. Practice Makes Perfect
It’s a good idea to do a dry run with your equipment ahead of time, especially if it’s your first time setting up a new tent. Modern ones can get a bit confusing, so read the instructions and set up the tent in your yard, garage or even living room. It could be fun!
3. Pack the Necessities
Don’t forget fire starters, flashlights or lanterns, a first aid kit, sunscreen and bug spray. When packing clothes, plan for colder temperatures and always bring lots of layers. Take food that’s easy to prepare over a fire or propane stove. Sausages, steaks, cans of beans and similar fire-friendly foods are good for dinner. And don’t forget the essentials for s’mores!
4. Campsite Safety
Arrive at your campsite in daylight. To keep out bugs, leave your sleeping bags rolled up until you’re ready to get in them. Keep your tent zipped closed with zippers at the top. Before bed, make sure all food is packed away in your cooler or car to keep wildlife from catching its scent.
If you’re ready to camp, West Virginia State Parks are ready for you with a variety of campgrounds and camping options.