Camping in Great Smoky Mountains NP in Spring 2024: Spring 2024 Guide

1. Book early for summer and fall camping

These are extremely popular times and the park fills up quickly.

Given the increase in popularity of camping, which offers a comparatively safe option for other types of travel since the outbreak of Covid-19, it’s especially crucial to plan well ahead of time.

2. Research the campgrounds

Don’t just pick a site randomly. Many of the campgrounds offer both tent sites and RV sites, but some are only suitable for one or the other with some features drives that are too steep for RVs.

Some campgrounds also offer plum waterfront sites next to rivers and streams that can be had if you book early.

3. Check the elevation

Campgrounds at the park range from under 2,000 feet to over 5,00 feet in elevation. This means a difference of up to 20 degrees in temperature difference.

This impacts what clothes and supplies you need to camp comfortably and safely, so make sure to check out what weather you can expect at the campground before making a reservation

4. Make sure your RV is dry camp ready

If you camp with an RV, keep in mind that none of the campgrounds in the park offer electrical, water, or sewer hookups, and only a few offer dump sites.

This means your rig needs to be prepared for dry camping with plenty of space in your tanks for freshwater and greywater. Limit your onboard bathroom use and take advantage of the facilities that are on most sites.

Pick your sites wisely. An RV with no electricity for AC or alternative heat source turns into an oven in the summer sun or a refrigerator in the wintertime.

5. Select campgrounds that suit the activities that most interest you.

Some campgrounds feature popular hiking trails while others offer access to water recreation and fishing via waterfalls and creeks. A few are in historic areas and present opportunities to tour 19th-century structures.

Smaller campgrounds provide solitude and peace and quiet while others are busier and hence noisier. Choose a campground that suits your preferences.

Andrew Dodson

Andrew Dodson is an avid camper who enjoys the great outdoors with his wife and two-year-old son. He resides in Colorado, where you can often find him enjoying hikes with a toddler strapped to his back and mini goldendoodle Percy nearby.