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12 Reasons to Embrace Cold Weather RV Camping (Before Spring!)

Published on February 22nd, 2024 by Dave Helgeson

Many RVers winterize their RVs and resign themselves to the indoors until the arrival of spring. However, a growing number of adventurous campers have discovered the beauty and excitement of cold weather RV camping.

I know the idea of venturing out into the frosty wilds with your cozy home on wheels may sound intimidating. But hear me out. If you have a good heater, blankets, and batteries, there are numerous compelling reasons to give winter RVing a try.

How to Make the Most of Winter’s Last Days

In this article, we’ll explore the many benefits of hitting the road before spring equinox. My top 12 reasons to get on the road now include:    

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Solitude and Serenity

One of the most appealing aspects of winter RV camping is the solitude it offers. While summer camping spots can be crowded and noisy, the winter season tends to thin out the crowds, providing a serene and peaceful environment. With fewer people around, you can fully immerse yourself in the tranquility of nature and experience a true sense of solitude.

Stunning Scenery

Winter landscapes have a unique beauty that is incomparable to any other season. Picture pristine snow-covered forests, frozen waterfalls, and the sparkling clarity of the winter sky. Cold weather RV camping allows you to witness this breathtaking scenery up close and personal. Whether you’re waking up to a sunrise over a snowy mountain range or gazing at the stars during a clear, crisp night, the views you may encounter can be truly awe-inspiring.

Hike to a frozen waterfall. (Image: Dave Helgeson)
Hike to a frozen waterfall. (Image: Dave Helgeson)

More Wildlife Encounters

With leaves off the trees in winter, wildlife is often more visible. With fewer human disturbances, animals are more likely to venture out from their hiding spots. Observing creatures like deer, elk, and even foxes in their winter habitat is a captivating experience. Just remember to keep a respectful distance and avoid interfering with the animals’ natural behavior.

Viewing wildlife (Image: AI)
Viewing wildlife (Image: AI)

Cold Weather Camping is Cheaper

Camping during the off-peak winter season often translates to lower costs. Public campground fees are typically reduced and you’re more likely to find discounts or special offers at RV parks. Additionally, winter fuel blends typically cost less and you won’t have to worry about the summer price hikes when demand for fuel is high. So, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly way to travel and enjoy the outdoors, winter RV camping is a great option.

Cozy Camper Comfort

Modern RVs are equipped with all the comforts of home, and that’s especially beneficial in the winter. Stay toasty warm with thermal curtains, your rig’s heating system and insulation along with enjoying the convenience of your fresh water tank for a fully equipped kitchen and bathroom. A bowl of hot soup and a hot shower can’t be beaten after a day playing in the snow. You don’t have to rough it in freezing temperatures. With your propane tank, furnace, and even an electric blanket, you can have all the comforts you need right at your fingertips.

Unique Cold Weather Activities

Winter RV camping opens up a world of unique activities that you won’t find during the summer months. Try ice fishing on a frozen lake, seek out unique displays of Christmas lights, embark on a snowshoeing adventure, storm watching at the ocean beach or test your skills with cross-country skiing. Building snowmen, having snowball fights, and enjoying a hot cup of cocoa by the campfire are all part of the fun. Winter camping provides a chance to create lasting memories while engaging in activities that are unavailable in the warmer season.

Visit large displays of Christmas lights in your RV. (Image: Dave Helgeson)
Visit large displays of Christmas lights in your RV. (Image: Dave Helgeson)

Campfire Stories

Sitting around the campfire is a classic camping experience, and cold weather RV camping doesn’t have to be an exception. Cozy up next to a crackling fire, toast marshmallows, and share stories with your fellow campers. The contrast between the chilly air and the warmth of the fire is an experience that’s sure to stay with you. Plus, unlike dry summer months when there’s zero moisture in the ground, you rarely need to worry about a campfire ban spoiling your campfire fun.

Starry Nights

Winter skies are known for their stunning clarity, making them perfect for RV astronomy fans. With shorter days and a quieter atmosphere, you can witness the magic of the night sky like never before. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights in regions that experience them.

No Bugs!

Say goodbye to those pesky mosquitoes and flies that can be the bane of summer camping trips. In the winter, you won’t have to deal with swarms of insects trying to make a meal out of you. This means you can enjoy the outdoors without the constant buzzing and biting that often accompanies warmer weather.

Challenging Yourself

Winter RV camping offers an opportunity to challenge yourself both mentally and physically. You’ll need to plan and prepare more meticulously, taking into account the colder weather and potential of freezing weather, frozen hoses, pipes, and condensation issues. Driving and navigating through winter conditions can be an adventure in itself. Overcoming these challenges can be incredibly rewarding and instill a sense of accomplishment.

Build Resilience

Camping in cold weather conditions can help you build resilience and adaptability. You’ll learn how to handle unexpected weather changes, understand how clothing layers can keep you warm without electricity, tackle adverse situations, and keep a positive attitude when facing challenges like snow on the roof of slide outs, or having to use the campground toilet facilities because your holding tanks are frozen. These camping survival skills can be valuable not only at the time, but in various aspects of life’s challenging times.

It’s a Bonding Experience

Winter RV camping can be an incredible bonding experience for families, friends, or couples. The shared challenges, cozy evenings, and the magic of the winter season create lasting memories and strengthen relationships. Winter RVing is an opportunity to disconnect from the digital world and reconnect with the people you care about.

Family campfire next to traker at campsite (Image: AI)
Lifetime memories at the campfire (Image: AI)

Have I convinced you to give cold weather RVing a try?

Camping during cold months offers a unique and rewarding way to explore the great outdoors during the colder months. From the stunning, snow-covered landscapes to the tranquility and lower costs, the benefits of winter camping are numerous. With the right preparation and a spirit of adventure, you can create unforgettable memories and enjoy the beauty of nature in a whole new way. So, don’t let the winter chill keep you inside – give winter RV camping a try and discover the wonder of the season in a whole new light.

More Tips for Winter Camping in Cold Air, Snow, and Rain

6 Winter RV Camping Problems (and How to Avoid Them). Whether you have a travel trailer or Class A motorhome, learn how to keep your plumbing safe with heat tape. Get the inside story on heated water hose choices, and learn how a simple foam insulation RV skirt and help you avoid frozen water lines.

Dumb Winter RVing Mistakes to Avoid. Should you use your water tanks? Is it possible to prevent a a frozen sewer hose? And should you use space heaters or not? 

How To Avoid Winter Camping Problems In Your RV. More great tips, from maintaining heat with your propane heater or other source, to keeping your RV refrigerator running while cold weather camping.

This post may contain affiliate links or mention our own products, please check out our disclosure policy here.

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