These State Parks Are Better Than Most National Parks

National parks are almost automatic destinations for campers throughout the U.S., but some state parks might be better targets.

Because they’re a bit lower on most people’s radar, they’re often not as crowded. 

They just might give you a better experience than their federal counterparts. Read on for our list of less-heralded public facilities that you could say perform well above their pay grade.

Many come to see its rock faces made of compressed volcanic ash. Hikers and cyclists enjoy miles of trails along its dramatic canyon ridges.

Smith Rock State Park, Terrebonne, OR


This stunning panoramic view may become a defining experience of this incredible park 30 miles outside Moab. 

Dead Horse Point State Park, Moab, UT


The Civilian Conservation Corps left its mark on Ledges State Park with numerous sturdy structures, including the picturesque stone bridge over Pea’s Creek.

Ledges State Park, Madrid, IA


If you prefer solid ground, walk the trails along the streams or step inside a sandstone cave or two at Eldorado Canyon State Park. 

Eldorado Canyon State Park, Eldorado Springs, CO


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