The Ultimate Guide to RV Camping in the Spring 2023
Have you made your spring RVing plans yet? Wondering where the best spring destinations are? Looking for tips on why spring is the best season to RV? Let Harvest Hosts help!
Spring is an amazing time to hit the road in your RV. The bugs aren’t in full force yet. The days are warm and the evenings cool—which is perfect for campfires. The waterfalls are at their most powerful. And the campgrounds aren’t totally packed yet.
Regardless of your reason for camping in the spring, this is your guide to help you get out of the house, put off your spring cleaning checklist, and hit the open road in your RV.
Say Goodbye Winter, And Hello Spring!
The transition from winter to spring is one celebrated by most people in North America—except winter sports enthusiasts. Nature starts poking its way out of the earth and people begin poking their heads outside—testing to see if it is time to make plans.
Here is a helpful checklist to help you get ready for spring RVing.
Check Your RV Batteries
You’ll want to use a voltage meter to be sure your house batteries are in good shape. Be sure to remove any corrosion that builds up over the winter. And top them off with a battery charger before you head out.
Dewinterize Your Water System
This is a necessary evil when it comes to RVing. Protecting your water system saves you a lot of headaches. To do this, you’ll want to remove your winterizing agent—probably antifreeze.
While you are removing the antifreeze from your lines, you’ll want to sanitize them at the same time by running a bleach solution through your system—including your hot water heater.
Once you’ve successfully purged all of the antifreeze from all of your lines, you’ll want to allow the bleach solution to sit in your lines for about 5 hours to completely sanitize them. Upon completing this step, it is now time to drain your tank of the bleach solution and fill up with clean water. It is recommended to complete this process twice to fully remove all hints of the smell of bleach. Occasionally, this can be done in one rinse.
This process takes a while, but a lot of the time is waiting for your tank to fill up or drain.
Inspect Your Plumbing Connections
While you are removing the antifreeze or bleach solutions, you can check all of your plumbing lines for leaks or cracks. The expansion and contraction of changing temperatures can cause minor issues. But those minor issues become huge problems later if they aren’t caught early.
Check the Propane System
Inspect the propane system. Be sure propane is reaching each appliance—cooktops, furnace, refrigerator, outdoor grills, hot water heater, etc. If one of these doesn’t kick on, it could be a number of minor things. Look at shut off valves or corroded ignition switches first and go from there.
Engine and Generator Maintenance
Your generator and diesel motorhomes ought to have their oil changed annually—at the minimum. Be sure you are staying on top of this. Gasoline engines need oil changes more often. Consult your manual for recommended needs.
Inspect Your Tires
Having a flat while going down the road is a miserable experience. Inspect your tires for any cracking, air pressure, and expiration dates. And don’t forget your spare tire.
Check Your HVAC Systems
Be sure you are inspecting your heating and cooling systems. Kick them both on for an extended period of time. Your furnace will probably give off a terrible smell at first. This is because it hasn’t been run in a while. No worries!
If you have any issues with your air conditioning unit, don’t worry. There are a couple simple things to check before heading to your repair shop.
First, be sure it is getting appropriate airflow. You’ll need to climb on top of your RV and remove any debris from around your unit. Squirrels and other rodents love storing things around these units during the winter months.
Second, remove and clean your air vents. These often get ignored and can get gunked up pretty quick. Clean them with warm soap and water. Then let them air dry before you reinstall.
Inspect Your Roof
For this you’ll need to get on your RV roof. Look at all of the seams. Be on the lookout for any cracking, bubbling, or loose debris. And then repair accordingly.
Don’t Get Overwhelmed
If it is your first time running through that list, you might be a little overwhelmed. Don’t be! It shouldn’t take but a day to accomplish all of those things—unless something is wrong. The pay off for getting the previously mentioned list done is big. Spring RVing doesn’t get the credit it deserves.
Why You Should Consider RVing This Spring
There are endless reasons to consider RVing in the spring, but here are some of the best reasons to not wait until Memorial Day for your first RV trip.
Spring arrives at different times for people all over North America. But whenever spring begins to break for you, you’ll know. The windows of the house open up, the storm doors become screen doors, and you are looking for things to do outside.
Spring brings warm days, cool nights, and a beautiful breeze. Those warm days are perfect for hiking, time in the kayak, laying in a hammock, reading a book outside, or cooking over a fire. Those cool nights beg for campfires, hoodies, and sweatpants.
The Bugs Aren’t In Full Force
You are an outdoorsy person and bugs aren’t supposed to bother you. Yeah right! They are still annoying, sting, bite, and get into everything. But during the Spring, those bugs aren’t in full force yet.
This means you won’t need to take as many precautions. And you don’t need to lug those citronella candles out of your basement storage, use those stinky bug sprays, or worry about covering every canned beverage to keep those gnats out.
You will worry about a few bees who are in search of something sweet, maybe a few mosquitos—but a gentle breeze takes care of these—and that is about it.
Part of camping and RVing is being outside without all of the people around ruining your zen moments. Well, spring has significantly fewer people camping. Most people see April and May as the rainy season and they don’t want to risk it.
Sure you will risk losing a part of the day with rain, but you’ll oftentimes get campgrounds or Harvest Hosts locations with fifty percent capacity. This means, you will get the primo spots without booking six to nine months in advance. Take the chance on spring and you won’t be disappointed.
With less people RVing the prices are typically much lower. Campgrounds are typically running lower rates and aren’t as competitive to get into. Plus, fuel prices aren’t inflated due to the peak travel season. This leads to a lot more freedom for RVers looking for the road trip experience.
Due to the lower prices, this can lead to your family budget going further. You can travel further away from home due to better fuel prices and take more trips due to cheaper campground rates.
Different Outdoor Experiences
Each season offers something different. Spring has the blooming of ornamental and flowering trees, flowers are popping through the earth, and wildlife is coming out of hibernation. In the spring, the canopy isn’t in full force and doesn’t inhibit your view from seeing what is otherwise hidden by nature.
Those little critters scurrying along the forest floor are easily visible and the bear, moose, and other wildlife isn’t hidden by the brush. This is a great time of year to see wildlife actively roaming for their first meal of the year—not humans.
In the spring, the trickle of a mountain creek is more like a raging river you wouldn’t dare try to cross. This is really enjoyable from a visual perspective, but white water kayakers see it a little differently. There are great white water runs that only exist come spring. Don’t miss out on those moments.
This is the season to just go chasing waterfalls. The water tables are at their yearly high. Waterfalls are in their full glory with the most amount of water spilling over their edges. In fact, there are certain waterfalls that are only seasonal.
Instead of seeing a little trickle seemingly spilling over the edge of a rock face, you’ll see thousands of gallons rushing over the edge. It becomes a scene that you will want to sit and admire and really make you wonder how this beautiful scene came to be.
Waterfall season is one of the best times of year to be in nature—don’t miss it this year.
A Longer RV Season
If you get out there early, you get a longer RV season. The peak season is Memorial Day to Labor Day—typically 99 days. By starting April 1 and going through the end of October, you have more than doubled your season to 213 days.
Consider taking some of those summer trips and sliding them into spring or fall months. This small tweak to your plan will save your money, increase camping season, and allow you to see the beauty of North America in all different seasons.
A Great Way To Celebrate the End of Winter
A spring RV trip is the perfect way to celebrate making it through the doldrums of winter. It might not be the perfect trip and you might not go cross country, but it sure is a great way to beat the winter blues.
Hopefully, you are convinced to give spring a shot and are ready to go in search of your first spring destination.
Harvest Hosts Can Help with Your Spring RV Travels
If you are ready to start planning that first trip, Harvest Hosts can help in so many ways. We can help you discover great places. Our list of some of the best National Parks to visit in the spring, moderate climates come spring, and of course help you get from here to there without staying in boring parking lots.
Best Spring National Park Destinations
The best National Park is always up for debate—and perhaps there is no such thing. But spring is a great time for certain parks.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
This is the most visited National Park in the United States, but spring sets this park into action. You’ll see fly fishing in the creeks, bears coming out of hibernation, and seasonal waterfalls rushing.
Arches National Park and Canyonlands National Park
This National Park finally left behind its freezing temperatures and wicked winds for comfortable hiking temperatures between the 60’s and 80’s. With those warm days and cool evenings, spring is the perfect season to visit Arches National Park.
This time of year you will have fewer people in the park, a little bit of greenery in the high desert, and the possibility of some wild flowers. Definitely consider visiting Arches and Canyonlands National Park in the Spring before the 100+ degree days start arriving.
Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah is another park in the Appalachian Mountains that offers great seasonal waterfalls. This National Park is great in the spring before the humidity comes and lays its thick suffocating blanket over the top of its beautiful ridges.
Shenandoah National Park is better a little later in the spring—starting mid-April. At this time, you won’t need to worry about icy conditions on Skyline Drive and wildflowers will be on full display.
Grand Canyon National Park
The Grand Canyon is on most people’s bucket list and it is a tricky one to time right. While winter temperatures don’t appear terrible on paper, the winds that whip through can be so strong they feel piercing. Some summer, the temperatures aren’t bad on the rim, but down in the bowl you can fry an egg.
Spring and fall are the best times of year to visit the Grand Canyon—but you will need to take precaution with heavy rain.
A Great Region for the Spring Months
The snow is still sitting on the mountain peaks, those northern gems are still experiencing frigid temperatures, but there are tons of regions to explore this time of year. One of the best places to explore come spring is the Southeast United States.
They offer moderate climates, beautiful natural areas, portions of the Appalachian Trail, and quaint small towns. The other reason to visit the Southeast United States during this time of year is because the humidity hasn’t taken over yet. Come summer, this region can be almost oppressive with humidity making it difficult to really enjoy everything it has to offer. Consider the following spots this spring:
Northern Georgia Has Beautiful Mountains
In northern Georgia, you never really get those terrible winter temperatures come March. The average high for March-May is about 70 degrees with a low in the mid-40s. That makes it perfect for camping, hiking, fishing, and just getting out of the house.
Alabama Has Mountains Too
Believe it or not, the Appalachian foothills stretch all the way to Alabama. Fort Payne, Alabama is a great place to enjoy a week or two of your time. The nearby Lookout Mountain and Desoto State park are great places to enjoy the outdoors.
North Carolina and Tennessee Know How To Share
These two states share a lot in common—especially when it comes to the Appalachian Mountains. They share the Great Smoky Mountain National Park—the United States most visited park. And they share nearly 400 miles of the Appalachian Trail.
This entire region is great. The creeks look more like rivers, the hiking is great, the views spectacular, and white water rafting/kayaking are in full force. And the temperatures are quite comfortable starting as early as March.
Stuck between Nashville and the Appalachian Mountains is a region overlooked—this is Middle Tennessee. In this area, there are three specific parks worth visiting this spring.
Rock Island State Park, Fall Creek Falls State Park, Savage Gulf State Natural Area make a triangle in the Cumberland Plateau. These three State Parks are less than an hour from one another, all offer great waterfalls, and have amazing hikes to enjoy too.
Florida’s Gulf Coast Is a Perfect Spring Break
Along the panhandle of Florida, you’ll find a slew of small beach towns to visit come spring. Depending on how early you are ready to go, you could get there before the college spring-breakers bombard this region.
Along Florida’s Gulf Coast, there are white sand beaches, beautiful views, and remnants of yesteryear. Consider embarking on the 30A Road Trip along the coast. You will be taken from Panama City Beach to Destin.
Harvest Hosts Can Help Get You There
With a Harvest Hosts Membership, you can enjoy your time between here and there. We help you avoid those littered parking lots by connecting you with local farms, businesses, wineries, and more. With our All Access Membership, you’ll gain access to 8,000+ locations that are scattered all over North America and are a perfect way to enhance any road trip—regardless of the season.
Your Destination Awaits
There are some pluses and minuses in the RV life, but chasing your ideal situation isn’t up for debate. This spring, you can start south and track those 60 degree days all the way into June or July. Then wait a couple months and follow it back down.
The RV lifestyle isn’t for everyone, but can you imagine it not being for you? Now get out there and start living the life you’ve been dreaming of with your Harvest Hosts Membership!
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