Utah in March

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JBR's picture
Last seen: 1 month 2 weeks ago
Joined: 08/13/2016 - 12:46
Utah in March

After trying a couple of times to do an epic Scamp trip to the great Utah national parks and register on the national parks site with endless frustration and disappointment, my wife and I have decided to head out to Utah and do the major parks west-to-east, i.e. Zion, Bryce, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Arches, and lots of other stuff in between, but not depending on getting rteservations for every night of the trip. We are allowing about a month to get there and back from the east coast (Philadelphia area). I actually succeeded in convincing my best friend and navigator that we would have more freedom and flexibility if we tried some dry camping options along the way, and get spots in private (or national) parks as needed. I was thrilled when she said, "Sure, let's try it."


But here's the question: It seems to me that, as long as we are prepared for some cold (possibly even freezing) weather, we can still do it in March. She's now talking more about April. My biggest deal-breaker is crowds. Any thoughts out there about Utah in March vs. April, and the crowds vs. weather tradeoff? Many thanks for whatever wisdom anybody can provide.

Greg A
Greg A's picture
Last seen: 2 hours 48 min ago
SOI-AdministratorLifetime Member
Joined: 11/02/2013 - 20:45

Unless things have slowed down recently, there really isn't a good month to go to the parks in UT, even the winter months. Most popular camping destination the last few years. I don't think I'd attempt it from the East Coast unless I could secure reservations. There is a good bit of blm camping in the southeastern part of the state, but sometimes those are overrun. Remember, March is Spring Break month and the UT parks get beyond crowded. I don't want to discourage your trip, and if you can get reservations you'd be good to go, but it can be a challenging destination to plan a trip, and going without reservations could be tough. I would try and book commercial campgrounds if the parks have no availability, Sometimes they are a better option if you book far enough out.

iE we are having the same issue in reverse trying to do the New England leaf peeping trip from AZ.

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Sid_The_Scamp's picture
Last seen: 6 months 1 day ago
Joined: 03/16/2023 - 09:54
We did the Utah NPs last

We did the Utah NPs last September before we had a scamp.  March has potential for chill and so does April.  I'd try to shoot for reservations wherever you can.  BLM is available but you also have potential for mud / snow melt and don't want to mess with that.  Moab has a KOA which is close to both Arches and Canyonlands.  For Zion (and potentially others) don't forget to check towns nearby.  We stayed in Hurricane while visiting Zion and even though its a neighboring town it was still worth it.

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