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With the explosion in RV sales in recent years, you’d think state parks would open camping as long as possible. However, New York State officials have made an unusual decision to shorten the camping season for 2022. Let’s take a deeper look and see if we can make sense of this decision.
What Is New York’s Typical Camping Season?
In recent years, the regular camping season in New York State ran from the beginning of May through the middle or end of October. These dates have applied to tent and RV camping.
Winter campers could rent a cabin during the snowy season. It’s a way to experience the state parks in a whole new way. You can make reservations up to nine months in advance for any of the 8500 campsites the New York state parks manage.
How Will New York’s Camping Season Change in 2022?
The recent changes made to the state park system will shorten the camping season quite a bit. Now, most state park campgrounds will open on Memorial Day and run through Columbus Day. For most campgrounds, this means a camping season that’s 21 to 28 days shorter than in previous years.
The shorter season means less time for campers to enjoy the millions of dollars in updates and upgrades New York State Parks have made over the past several years. However, the park officials feel their reasoning for making the changes are justifiable.
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Why Is New York Cutting the 2022 Camping Season Short?
Shortening the camping season during a camping boom is perplexing to many campers in New York State. State officials share, ”State parks periodically adjust its camping season schedule to respond to visitor demand and ensure a quality experience. We are focusing resources on the core season from one week before Memorial Day through Columbus Day when demand is highest.”
Unfortunately, they didn’t expound on this decision enough to give us a clear picture of what that higher-quality experience will look like.
With the demand for campsites being incredibly high, it will be interesting to see how the decision unfolds. Shortening the camping season will likely have a significant impact on potential New York campers.
Pro Tip: While exploring New York make sure to stop by Rochester and check out these Fun and Unique Things to Do in Rochester, NY.
How Will This Change Affect Campers in 2022?
This decision to shorten the camping season will have a major impact on those looking to camp in New York State. By removing less-crowded dates at the beginning and end of the typical season, officials have forced more people to camp during peak season dates.
By forcing these campers to camp during peak season, already-crowded campgrounds will be even more cramped. Reservations, especially on holiday weekends, will be even harder to snag. This may force potential campers to seek alternative options through local campgrounds or even public lands.
It might also stress local attractions that campers are hoping to enjoy. Excursions like kayak or SUP rentals, bike rentals, or even many hiking trails are likely to experience higher crowds.
Although the New York Parks Department plans to allocate more resources to the peak season, it might not be enough to match the demand.
The Parks Department did say they hoped to have more options for campers during peak season. They mentioned more activities and places to stay, including cottages, cabins, and campgrounds with tent and RV sites. This doesn’t address the issues visitors in the off-season might face, but it does give us something to look forward to.
Are Any Other States Cutting Their Camping Seasons Short Next Year?
We’re not currently seeing other signs of this being a growing trend across the board. No other states have made announcements indicating that they plan to shorten their camping seasons.
We hope this isn’t a trend, as it will only make it more difficult for those of us who love camping and spending time in state parks.
Let’s Wait and See
It’ll be interesting to watch this story as things continue to evolve. There was no major announcement by state officials regarding the decision to shorten the season. Camping enthusiasts who saw the notice brought it to the public’s attention and demanded a statement from the Parks Department.
We’re sure officials will continue to expand on this decision or offer some clarity to their faithful campers when they can. We’re looking forward to seeing what activities and campgrounds they bring to the table next season and beyond.
Are you planning to camp in a New York State Park in the future? Will this affect your plans?