Fall in Missouri means sweatshirt weather, leaf-peeping trips and evenings around a crackling fire. It’s also a popular time for camping.
By late September and early October, the humid days of summer have given way to crisp autumn air with temperatures generally topping out in the 60s and 70s during the day and dropping to the 40s and 50s at night. Of course, this is Missouri, so even after fall arrives temperatures can jump up to 90 on any given day, while a sudden cold snap could bring frost.
No matter the weather, the key to a perfect camping trip is being prepared. The folks at Missouri State Parks have put together some great tips for camping and exploring the outdoors during the fall months. Their list of suggestions is comprehensive, but here are a few highlights:
Dress in layers. Each layer traps air and insulates. Multiple thin layers hold more air than a single bulky layer and allow less heat to escape.
Keep your head and neck covered. Do not wear cotton because it absorbs and retains water.
Wear dry socks and synthetic long underwear.
Stay dry – remove all wet clothes and dry off with a towel.
Always wear comfortable shoes and clothes when hiking. To avoid blisters, wear two pairs of socks.
Drink plenty of water.
Eat foods high in complex carbohydrates and increase intake of fats.
Drink hot liquids but avoid excessive liquids right before bed time.
Use a sleeping bag suitable for the overnight temperatures.
Do not leave your campsite without securing your camping gear.
Be sure to store your food properly to prevent wildlife, including raccoons and bears, from getting into it.
When hiking or driving, make sure to stay on existing roads and trails.
Before setting out on a hike, always tell someone your intended destination and how long you expect to be gone.
Avoid feeding and harassing the wildlife.
Do not litter! If you pack it in then pack it out!
Follow these tips and have an awesome outdoor adventure this fall in Missouri.