Fall is the Best Time to Visit These 5 National Parks
Summer may seem like the best time to visit national parks, but several national parks can get too hot during the summer, with temperatures above 100 degrees Fahrenheit. In the fall the weather starts to cool down making it the best time to visit these 5 national parks. Which national park will you visit this fall?
Bryce Canyon National Park
Avoid the heat in the summer and explore Bryce Canyon National Park this fall. Bryce Canyon National Park is located in Utah, and is known for where you find the largest concentration of Hoodoos on earth. There are four popular viewpoints you can drive to called Bryce Point, Inspiration Point, Sunset Point, and Sunrise Point. To further explore Bryce Canyon you can hike down Navajo Trail and up Queens Garden Trail to make a 2.9 mile loop
White Sands National Park
Located in New Mexico, White Sands National Park is the largest gypsum dunefield in the world at 275 square miles. White Sands was created from an ancient sea millions of years ago, which left behind gypsum. Wind and water continued to break down the gypsum crystals until they became sand. This process continues to occur from the gypsum that comes down from the surrounding mountains. There is water located below the dunefield which provides moisture to keep the dunes from blowing away.
As summer can be a bit toasty here, fall is the perfect time to visit. Experience the beauty of this national park with a hike on the sand dunes. The most beautiful area to hike in White Sands is at the end of Dunes Drive starting at Alkali Flat trailhead. You can follow the marked trail or create your own path. A must-do activity at White Sands is sledding down the sand dunes. Gypsum sand packs well which makes it perfect for sledding. Make sure to bring your camera to photograph this incredible place!
Death Valley National Park
Fall is the best time to visit Death Valley National Park as this is when the weather starts to cool down. Death Valley National Park is known as one of the hottest places on earth and the lowest elevation in North America. The extreme conditions of the park make for unique natural wonders to explore including salt flats, badlands, canyons, waterfalls, and craters.
Highlights of Death Valley include Artist’s Pallete, Badwater Basin, Devil’s Golf Course, and Zabriskie Point. Badwater Basin is the lowest point in North America at 282 ft below sea level. A short, half-mile walk from the parking lot will take you to the edge of the salt flats. The salt flats have unique patterns formed by wind and water and span 200 square miles
Plan your trip to Death Valley National Park: The Ultimate Weekend in Death Valley National Park
Arches National Park
Visit Arches National Park in Moab, Utah to see the densest concentration of stone arches in the world, with over 2,000 documented arches. The arches were created by water, ice, extreme temperatures, and underground salt movement. The most popular arches in the park are Double O Arch, Turret Arch, Landscape Arch, and Delicate Arch. A must-do hike in Arches National Park is called Devil’s Garden where you can see several popular arches. Moab can get very hot in the summer, so fall makes for the perfect time to visit.
Read More: Best Hikes in Arches National Park
Lassen Volcanic National Park
Lassen Volcanic National Park is a unique park with hydrothermal features that makes it feel like a mini Yellowstone (without the crowds). Highway 89 guides you through the park where you can stop at different areas and do a short walk to see mud pots and more geothermal features.
The best way to experience Lassen Volcanic National Park is to do a 3-mile hike called Bumpass Hell which features boiling springs, mud pots, steam vents, and fumaroles. The trail starts with views of the surrounding forest and takes you to an elevated boardwalk near the hydrothermal basin. You will get to see Big Boiler, the largest fumarole in the park, which can get up to 322 degrees Fahrenheit.
Make it a weekend and visit other hidden gems near Lassen Volcanic: Northern California Hidden Gems Weekend Road Trip
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