Learning Curves: Selecting Campgrounds

The criteria for making campground choices is unique to our travel style and desired activities, but the need to locate campgrounds is universal.

Due to the extreme heat of the summer, we are sticking to weekend day trips to get a drive through view of some of our nearby campgrounds.

I am retired and have the benefit of free time to throughly research and screen numerous campgrounds. In his free time, Earl also spot checks areas online and brings up locations that I overlooked.

That means searching a 200 mile radius from Lily’s storage facility in north Georgia, roughly an easy half day drive. That area includes slices of four neighboring states: Alabama, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina, along with the upper half of our home state Georgia.

Image: Target Base Camp Area

Target Base Camp Area: Continental United States view adapted from a free map provided at 50States.com

Before heading out on a day trip “inspection” we have selected locations from campground icons on Google Maps, mentions in camper’s blogs, Facebook group pages, camping apps, TripAdvisor comments and online reviews from various sources.

We also look over campsite photos and amenities, compare campground maps to Google earth views, check routes on Mapquest and route elevation apps, plus look over campground rules and regulations for even more information.

We want to select a few campgrounds to use over and over for short weekend camping trips, and as possible base camps for the first and last nights of any of our long trips. Through this research process a lot of area campgrounds have been screened and disregarded.

An upcoming post will feature a review of our first researched campground selection. We are looking forward to using our appealing basecamp during a trip that will include viewing the Total Solar Eclipse on August 21, 2017.