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Camping near DC

Hey DC,

Anyone know any good camp spots near DC (like 1-2 hour drive) that is open during Covid? 



8 Replies

@RyeBread712 Dolly sods wilderness is not too far, Shenandoah NP and the national forest around it, anywhere along the AT, for starters.

REI Member Since 1979

I second Dolly Sods. Last weekend the high temperature there was 76 while it was 96-98 in DC. The low at night was 57. We plan to go this weekend if I can find the right hiking boots. LOL 

@Jzsimo can we help make suggestions on hiking boots?! Just need to know a little about your feet (wide/narrow/medium width, high/low/medium volume, trouble spots, previous brands/models you've loved/hated)...

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

yeah, I don't think they make a boot for 8" of mud. (lol)

REI Member Since 1979

Hi @RyeBread712, thanks for reaching out through Conversations!

There are a wide variety of camping options around DC, and the best choice is out there depending on what kind of experience you are looking for. I'm pretty familiar with options on the Virginia side. If you want to get away, but not TOO away, then Pohick Bay Regional Park has as many amenities as you require to enjoy your time. If you would like something a little more rustic, there are some great experiences to be had at Sky Meadow State Park. One of my personal favorite spots to pair camping with a great hike is the Big Schloss Hike about 2 hours west of DC in the Wolf Gap Recreational Area. You can camp at the base of the peak or up on the ridge line for a more secluded getaway!

I hope that was helpful and that you continue having great adventures in the outdoors!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

Hi @RyeBread712 , 

Since @Philreedshikes and @REI-DannyB have given you some suggestions for the VA side of DC, let me chime in on the Maryland side.

The best resource I know of is the Maryland DNR (Department of Natural Resources, NOT Do Not Resuscitate) 😁.  Below is the website link to their "Parks" page.  Most of the state parks have camping, including on islands in the Chesapeake Bay and on Assateague Island, if you want a beachy experience.  These are nearly all designated camping areas, most with amenities.  The only backcountry type camping I know of in MD is in Western Maryland. 

Here is the link:


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Hi @Rob6 I live in Delaware and have a couple friends in DC so we're already starting to plan out some summer camping trips -- what are your favorite parks in Maryland? 

I enjoyed Assateague but it was really cold when we went (April) and I've heard bugs are awful from June on. Elk Neck has been a favorite... but looking to branch out and explore some more!  

@RyeBread712 The C&O Canal Towpath's campsites are open, as well as many Maryland State parks.  I just went to Rocky Gap State Park, near Cumberland, not too long ago.  It's a great park for camping.

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