Make the most of your camping experience by thinking about proximities – the distance or closeness of objects to you within the campground.
Below are some questions and thoughts to consider before you reserve a campsite; it is important to remember that proximities can involve a physical location and a time component.
Will you have neighbors in the campground? Will they be uncomfortably close or far enough away to give you the privacy you desire? Will your neighbors be in an RV, a tent or a cabin? Will they be part of a group? Will you have people next-door part of the time or all of the time?
What is the distance from the parking lot to your campsite? Is the parking area part of your campsite? Or, will you have to walk a long way and carry your equipment?
Where are the water spigots? Carrying water a long distance is not fun, so inquire if the spigots are within the campsite, a minute’s walk away, or further. Some campgrounds turn-off the water during the colder seasons and only turn it on later in the summer. Depending on when you visit, the water might not be available; find out.
Trees & Sun
Do you want your campsite to be in the full sun or shade? Will you be camping under trees? Will you have any shade? What about shade at different times of the day?
Where are the bathrooms in relation to your campsite? Bathrooms can be noisy, especially during the nighttime, as people get up at all hours to use the facilities. Plus, the breeze might change direction and if you’re too close…well, you get the idea. Also, how far will you have to walk to the bathroom after dark?
Locate the trash and recycle bins within the campground. How far away are they from where you will be camping? Do you want to be a short distance, or farther away from these facilities?
Some campgrounds are located directly next to a highway. Will you be camping a few feet away from traffic, or will you be several hundred feet or more away? How busy is the road?
Is there a playground? How close do you want to be?
Creeks & Streams
Is there a creek or a stream near your chosen campsite? Depending on the time of year, mosquitoes can be a problem for those camped close to water.
What will be your distance to the campground store if additional supplies are needed? What about the Ranger’s Office if there is an emergency?
Can you easily walk to campfire nature programs or junior ranger events for the kids? Consider the route at night, will it be rocky, paved or a pathway?
Will you be in an area where the weather is cold, wet, rainy, foggy or perfect? What is the weather forecast for the region or park where you will be camping?
If you are camping when the fire season is high will you be allowed to have a fire? What about the park’s wood collection policy? How far will you have to walk or drive to buy wood? How long will this take?
Researching the distance or closeness of things within the campground will help to avoid many headaches. You should always be thinking about these proximities from the research stages through to the actual camping trip.