Wednesday, November 29, 2023


Are you finding more available campsites in the last few weeks?

We’ve written about crowded campgrounds for a couple of years now. The situation has seemed to worsen with each passing month. But, wait! Is something happening?

At the staff meeting earlier this week the subject of campground crowding came up, and two of our staff members noted that they suddenly had no problem finding a campground on the fly, just like “the good ol’ days.”

Granted, there are places in the USA and Canada where there has never been a problem finding a last-minute campsite. But they are usually in out-of-the-way places. It has been a huge challenge to find such a spot in popular tourist areas, like in and near national parks.

But now, with the gas prices soaring, RVers are cutting back their travels. In our poll last week, one-quarter of the more than 2,700 readers who responded had canceled at least some reservations. Twelve percent said they had canceled all or most of them.

What about you? After answering the poll question, would you please leave a comment? We are planning an article about this next week and would very much appreciate your feedback.

Chuck Woodbury
Chuck Woodbury
I'm the founder and publisher of I've been a writer and publisher for most of my adult life, and spent a total of at least a half-dozen years of that time traveling the USA and Canada in a motorhome.



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Rocki B (@guest_193555)
1 year ago

We have 2 RV spots in Bend Oregon that have been full all summer. We started using Hipcamp platform as well as Airbnb. Many people haven’t heard of Hipcamp but it’s getting pretty popular among campers. Even with the rising cost in fuel, people still want to get out and enjoy the great outdoors!

ROBIN Connell (@guest_192739)
1 year ago

We are Boondockers Welcome hosts when we are not on the road. We live on our family farm in the middle of the country and usually have lots of guests going to or coming from the West. Has really slowed down since mid-June. Have to believe it is a result of high fuel prices and weather/fire related issues in the west.

Gary R Williams (@guest_192624)
1 year ago

I checked “yes” on finding more camping spots available. It is really more than that. We had our annual trip to Oregon, six weeks this year, all planned and reservations made. But, after lots of “should we or should we nots” the nots won!

The major reason? We just are so upset at what is happening to the cost of living for the average American while our supposed leadership in this country, both political and corporate continue to make matters worse.

We decided to forgo the at least $1200.00 increase in fuel costs from last year’s trip but still travel and have some fun.

This is the second part of my survey reply. We decided to take a 4 week or so trip to New Mexico. I was able to make all the reservations within a few days in mid-June. This includes Las Cruces, Ruidoso, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Taos, Show Low, AZ and back home to southern AZ.

Please do not think this is a “poor me” tale. We have planned for our retirement, are doing well financially. It is the principle of it!

Chris blunt (@guest_192609)
1 year ago

Reservations are still tight at the places we’ve been going. Saw very few sites that were reserved yet empty this past weekend. We’re camping closer to home then normal but we’re still going as often.

John (@guest_192433)
1 year ago

While I haven’t been paying attention, I’m going to after reading this article. There is at least one more trip I would like to get in, if I can find a place to park.

Doug (@guest_192405)
1 year ago

I live in Georgia and I’ve found more locals than travelers. Too expensive traveling far.

Tyler (@guest_192145)
1 year ago

I live in Maine and we are finding campgrounds that started charging “market rates” as they call it, or gouging as I call it, are now having more and more openings and it is getting easier to find a spot at these campgrounds.

Candy Medina (@guest_192843)
1 year ago
Reply to  Tyler

At market rates?

Ray (@guest_192100)
1 year ago

As a traveling evangelist, when I’m not church driveway surfing, I need to follow a prescribed path around the country. Reserving 60 days out at Thousand Trails, Encore, KOA, Travel Resorts of America and Passport America has been much easier than I thought it would be!

Sus (@guest_191916)
1 year ago

We were able to reschedule a coveted State park reservation so I think it is happening. We will only go out 3 hours or so. No long cross state trips until we have lower gas prices. Hoping for Big changes in the WH. America is suffering the consequences of elections.

Denise (@guest_192027)
1 year ago
Reply to  Sus

This issue is world wide, not just the US. Not a WH issue. This would have happened under the past president as well.

Dan F (@guest_192163)
1 year ago
Reply to  Denise

I generally try to avoid political stuff on a RV comment .Our refineries are at 100% capacity .This country hasn’t built a refinery in how many years ,that’s the true bottle neck in the system. People equate gas and prices to Presidents for some reason ,shrug .

John (@guest_192435)
1 year ago
Reply to  Dan F

Spot on Dan.

Last edited 1 year ago by John
JimB (@guest_192277)
1 year ago
Reply to  Sus

There is always somebody who has to make it about politics. Keep your political comments to yourself, please.

Rusty Walden (@guest_191638)
1 year ago

With the cost of campgrounds going up and the cost of gas, and hard to get reservations at some of the campgrounds we like to stay at my wife and I have not done any camping for two years. It is getting to the spot it is just as easy to pack your suitcases, put them in the car and head out and just go to a hotel.

Mike (@guest_191419)
1 year ago

Yes, I believe it has gotten a little bit easier, we were able to book a spot for the 4th holiday at a very popular campground near Richmond VA on Tuesday before that weekend and there were 3 other spots that stayed open the 4 days we were there. Normally you have to reserve at least 2 weeks ahead to get a spot. Hope it continues.

Karl (@guest_191570)
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike

Got one at Fishing Bridge short notice Yellowstone, multiple openings… WHEN I wanted it.

Dan F (@guest_192164)
1 year ago
Reply to  Karl

My coworker cancelled his yellowstone trip because he was in the area of the flooding and would had taken 2 hrs to get to the other entrance.

Dave (@guest_191414)
1 year ago

On a four month trip to Wyoming and surrounding area and have had to change our plans because of medical issues. Not difficult to find campgrounds even near Yellowstone NP east entrance.

Charlotte Damato (@guest_191344)
1 year ago

I spent a year making reservations for a 4 month journey that started in June. It was exhausting but worth the effort. I’ll be starting the reservation quest very soon for next year’s trip. It’s what I do for peace of mind and amazing camp sites.

Barnjai (@guest_191485)
1 year ago

Me too. Not for 4 months but we did a month last year. 16 campgrounds in 31 days. We had some amazing campsites. This year is closer to home and shorter trips because of gas prices but sites were still chosen with care and early in the game. Planning a trip is half the fun for me.

sandy petit (@guest_191317)
1 year ago

retired 3 years, since gas prices went up quit looking. waiting for prices to
go down or stabilize before i will consider camping again.

Steve Parr (@guest_191256)
1 year ago

We don’t go to the popular parks. There are plenty of smaller, out of the way campgrounds. Provincial parks in Canada and mom and pop places. Never have problems getting in.

Wayne (@guest_191251)
1 year ago

I had reservations for Myrtle Beach in early May that I cancelled along with the rest of my east coast travel plans due to the advertised diesel fuel shortages. Based in Phoenix I try to get out of here for the summer months. After sitting it out for the last two months my itch is getting the better of me. I’m leaving for Moab white water rafting next week with a roughly 1500 mile road trip. I didn’t find any difficulty booking stops.

Tina W (@guest_191218)
1 year ago

I’m guessing this relates more to heat than gas prices. We just left a campground two hours from our house yesterday without staying one night — because the heat way just miserable. No thought of gas prices one way or another.

Ozzie (@guest_191177)
1 year ago

No, it’s more of a problem now than it was just a few months ago. Most of the time we stay a week or more and finding a site both available for the length of time AND in our preferred direction of travel has been a chore lately. Keep in mind we are a bit picky about the campgrounds we chose as far as desirability and price. Due to prices (of everything) and availability we’ve decided to drop anchor for a while here in Colorado and plan to stay thru August. Monthly rates are decent and the weather is very comfortable compared to back home. We’ll start our planning again near the end of the month and see if things change.

Randy (@guest_191164)
1 year ago

Wow just made a 1 week reservations at an RV Park 8 miles from West Glacier entrance..tried to in May and was not able to. V.Happy..!!

Marcus (@guest_191074)
1 year ago

We just finished an 8,500 mile trip and I adjusted our itinerary in a few places and even added nights at massively popular campgrounds like KOA West Glacier.

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