Camping Can be S’more FunEveryone likes a campfire at night while on a summer camping trip but imagine that same campfire in the fall when the flames take the edge off the cold as you roll up the sleeves on your hoodie. Fall camping has many advantages over other times of the year. “For those who don’t mind donning a bit of flannel or purchasing an extra cord of wood for the fire pit, camping in Michigan in the fall allows for a much more personal adventure or experience with the natural beauty that is Michigan,” said Darren Ing, director of the Michigan Association of Recreation Vehicles and Campgrounds, (MARVAC). “Animals tend to be more active in the cooler temperatures and fall, and the crisper air is perfect for long hikes in the woods.” Another obvious benefit is fall colors. Campgrounds are often located in more rustic, rural areas. These are regions where the vibrant, colorful leaves can really stand out. “Imagine discovering the breathtaking beauty of trees in full fall splendor reflected in a quiet lake or stream and that gives you a sense of why the U.P. is a favorite with many,” he said. “For those who prefer a water view, Michigan has thousands of miles of shoreline which take on a whole new beauty once the crowds leave the sand after Labor Day.” In addition, fall campers deal with fewer crowds, less mosquitoes and comfortable, cooler temperatures. It is also perhaps easier to reserve the perfect spot you’ve had your eye on in a popular campground – especially if you camp during the week. While the fall foliage puts on a colorful show, many campgrounds also have other entertainment options to celebrate the season, including special Halloween-themed weekends. Addison Oaks Campground in Leonard, just north of Rochester, hosts its Boo Bash for two weekends every October with a costume contest, campsite decorating contest, haunted house, family games, trick-or-treating and more. One thing is for sure: Each campground will provide a unique experience for its guests. Ing said Michigan has such a wide variety of resources that campers are sure to reserve a spot with the amenities they desire, whether that’s taking long hikes in the woods, secluded access to waterways or one-of-a-kind urban experiences. “Michigan has 19 million acres of vibrant, color-changing trees to observe. October is a great time to coast down country roads and highways in an RV and to view the bold red, yellow and orange colors while on your way to your campsite,” he said.
Fall Camping Tips• Dress in layers • Pack appropriate bonfire essentials including comfy-cozy blankets for sitting around a campfire, abundant firewood purchased at the campground, a flashlight/headlamp as it gets darker much quicker and don’t forget the s’mores fixings • Engage in creative outdoor activities and crafts like painting acorns, making a colored leaves garlands with glue and glitter or creating natural wind chimes using twine and pine cones • Those new to camping can go to www.marvac.org for a listing of hundreds of campgrounds all across Michigan or to find an RV dealer who rents vehicles. • Check out new equipment and gear at the 29th Annual RV & Camping Show, Oct. 3-7 at Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi to talk with dozens of Michigan campground representatives and check out the nearly 400 RVs on display. Courtesy of Michigan Association of Recreation Vehicles and Campgrounds
Written by Jane Peterson, for Digital First Media. Published by The Oakland Press. 10/21/2018