Travel, Teach, Live in the USA and Canada
If you plan on visiting or living in the United States, you owe it to yourself to visit at least a few of the country's many national parks. With such a wide variety of parks from which to choose, it's a sure bet that you'll find something of personal interest located nearby, no matter which state you visit. Although many parks are beautiful and interesting year-round, many people prefer to visit these parks during their peak season. However, in some cases there are distinct advantages to planning your visit during what is known as the "shoulder season" or even the off-season. If you're planning a trip to a United States national park in the near future, here are some tips that will help you choose the best time to visit.
Autumn: The Perfect Time to Visit National Parks?
Just as is the case with many attractions within the United States, the autumn season is a favorite choice when visiting national parks. In fact, many people choose October over the vacation favorite of September when planning their park visits. There are many different reasons why October can be the perfect time to visit a national park. The cooler weather makes it more pleasant to hike, sightsee, and enjoy everything a park has to offer. If you're planning to visit a park in the warm Southern or Southwestern areas of the country, you'll avoid the intense summer heat by waiting until autumn. Additionally, even in the Northern areas of the country, the weather in October is not yet too cold to be outdoors for extended periods of time. In fact, many times you'll find unseasonably warm days in October, which are often referred to as "Indian summer."
Additionally, in many areas of the United States, the foliage is nothing short of spectacular during October. It's a great time to be outdoors, and the crowds are usually much smaller as compared to the peak summer season. If you're hoping to view some wildlife, you'll find that many species are quite active during the fall. As such, you might just get a chance to see some animals that you wouldn't easily get to view during other times of the year.
Visiting During "High Season"
If you take the time to do your research on the park you wish to visit, chances are you'll find that certain times of the year are considered "high season." For example, if you want to view the beautiful and yet brief blooming of wildflowers in Death Valley, you'll have to plan to schedule your trip during the early spring. When visiting a park during high season, expect to find higher prices, larger crowds and increased traffic. However, many times these challenges of high season are definitely worth it.
Visiting During "Low Season"
If you're like most people, you'll probably want to plan your visit during the less busy but still desirable "shoulder season" or the ever-popular "high season." However, if you're in the mood to take the "path less frequently traveled," there's also something to be said about visiting during the area's "low season." However, before planning a trip to a park during its off-season, it's important to do your research. In some cases, a particular park might be nearly inaccessible during the off-season, due to extreme snowfall or other challenging natural conditions.