What do you think the biggest misconception about Arizona camping is? For me, I feel like a lot of people think that all deserts are just rolling sand dunes, but they are so much more than that!
I would say the heat! It can be a big turn off, but there are many places you can go to cool off during the summer months. Globe and Flagstaff are naturally 20 degrees cooler than the Valley.
While the heat is always the big factor for both visitors and locals, the number one thing I always get asked is, “are there tree’s”? Not only does Arizona have some amazing pine forests, we have some solid desert forests as well. Mesquite tree’s that would mimic the willows of downtown Savanah Georgia.
One August we went to the Gilbert Ray campground near Old Tucson one year because my husband was in school and that was our only time free. It was beautiful! We almost had the campground to ourselves. At night it was cool and could watch the stars and thunderstorms across the valley. Got up, made breakfast. By 10 am had to go into town to the mall or pool. But by evening it was nice again!
That the terrain and weather is all like Phoenix. Yes, it snows in Arizona. Yes, you can escape the heat and be cool, even in the summer. But honestly, the biggest misconception is how many places you can stay in your RV in the Phoenix area, if you are under 55. There are approximately 6 “all ages” RV parks in the Phoenix area, and most of them are located on the edges of the county. If you’re RVing and want to be IN Phoenix or close to Phoenix, make sure you verify that it’s an all ages campground. Most of them are 55+.
The biggest Arizona camping misconception I can think of is a lack of diversity. Most people think that Arizona is essentially one big plot of Saguaro cacti. That idea could not be further from the truth. Within a few hours you can see red rock, pine trees, lakes, desert, mountains, large open meadows, canyons… I love exploring places that people don’t believe to be in Arizona.
Misconceptions: Arizona is flat, the desert is a wasteland, and there is no water. These couldn’t be farther from the truth! The “sky islands” host incredibly diverse ecosystems, the desert is alive with gorgeous flora and fauna, and there are numerous lakes and rivers. SE Arizona is one of our favorite places on the continent.
I think the biggest misconception is about how hot/cold it gets. Even the desert can get SUPER COLD and yes a lot of the state gets snow in the winter. It makes packing for some camping trips difficult when you have to pack for freezing temps overnight then hot temps mid day. Definitely check the forecast close to where you plan to camp and pack accordingly.