You probably associate camping with long, hot summer days, but there’s something to be said for postponing your trip until fall. Here are some reasons to wait it out until September, October, or even November.

It’s not too hot (or too cold)

It’s the best of both worlds. In most areas of the country, you still have some warmer days, but the fall chill is starting to creep into the air, so you’ll enjoy more comfortable sleeping conditions…and less cranky companions, too.

Campgrounds are less crowded

With kids back in school, fall is a less popular time to head into the great outdoors for many families. This means you can spread out and enjoy a more relaxing and peaceful time without dealing with noisy neighbors. As a bonus, admission prices will likely decrease in the off season, as many campgrounds reduce their rates after Labor Day.

Fewer bugs

Cooler temps mean that most of the creepy, crawly critters of the summer have gone away, so you don’t have to worry as much about bites and stings. It’s probably a good idea to bring a bottle just in case, though. Unfortunately, you still have to watch out for the bigger wild things like coyotes, and bears until the winter.

Comfort food

What’s better than enjoying some chili around a campfire? You can still grill, of course, but fall is the best time to enjoy all of the cozy, filling, cooler-weather staples like soup and hearty cast-iron skillet meals. 

Autumnal scenery (and activities)

The gorgeous colors of fall foliage will be on display in many parts of the country, making your experience that much more enjoyable in the autumn. It doesn’t get much better than sipping your morning coffee while gazing at the leaves. And sure, you might not get to go swimming this time of year, but opportunities for other seasonally-appropriate activities abound: apple and pumpkin picking, community harvest festivals, fishing derbies, and of course, Halloween fun.