Connect with us

Outdoor Blog

The 5 Best Camping Spots in Oahu, Hawaii

Published

on

Sunrise from Hanauma Bay on Oahu, Hawaii.

Oahu is the Hawaiian island that is home to the most people in the state, but it is also one of the most popular vacation destinations for tourists. Although there are plenty of hotels, condos, vacation homes and condos all over Oahu, there are also many places where you can pitch your tent and sleep under the stars. All you need for power is a propane tank or two for small appliances like camping stoves and portable heaters. Propane tanks are lightweight, convenient, and easy to use, so they are really important if you plan to do some camping in Hawaii.

If you are dreaming of waking up to the sound of lapping waves on a white-sand beach only a stone’s throw away from you before you go snorkeling for the day, or if opening your eyes to all kinds of exotic foliage in a botanical garden sounds great, we encourage you to bring or rent a tent and check in to any of these top-rated campgrounds. It is far easier to camp in Hawaii. It is nothing like camping in Yosemite or the Grand Canyon. There are no bears or snakes (although there are sometimes a few mosquitos), and you will never be too cold to sleep, even if you take your camping trip in the middle of winter.

While Oahu, the “Big Island”, is the most populated island in Hawaii, there are a few more camping restrictions than in Maui, Kauai, or some of the other Hawaiian Islands. Of course, there are plenty of great spots to pitch your tent and set up camp. But if you plan to go tent camping on Oahu, whether it is at a state or county site, you will usually need to obtain a camping permit in advance. Also, keep in mind that if you want to camp in a state park, they are generally closed on Wednesday and Thursday nights, and some parks are only open to camping on weekends.

Also, be aware that campfires and bonfires are illegal on all public beaches and parks in Hawaii. For cooking, you may use above-ground barbecue grills, but they have to be at least 12 inches above the ground. And if you are planning to camp during a holiday weekend, always be sure to make your reservations as early as possible. 

Also for cooking, bring along some heavy-duty aluminum foil if you don’t want to carry a cast-iron skillet around. You can build simple foil packets that can be placed on the coals to cook and then the food can be unwrapped and eaten once the packets are cool. If you are careful with the foil, it can even be rinsed off and reused. 

A good pair of metal tongs can also be useful to reach into the fire and pull out your aluminum foil packets. Just make sure you place your aluminum packets where they can be rolled out of the main heat and be allowed to cool down before you handle them. Tongs are also very versatile because they can also be used to pick up hot lids and retrieve anything else that might fall into the fire.

Camping at State Parks 

All state campsites on Oahu are administered by the Hawaii DLNR, State Parks. They prefer that all reservations are made on their online portal. You can make your reservations no more than 30 days in advance (unlike for the campsites on the other Hawaiian islands where you can reserve up to one year in advance). There are other special rules that apply to Oahu campsites only. As we mentioned, camping in state parks is not available on Wednesday and Thursday nights, and some parks are only open to campers on the weekends.

Here are five of the best state campsites on Oahu, with two bonus attractions as well.

The sun rises into the Kahana valley at Ahupua?a ?O Kahana State Park

Kahana is a relatively unspoiled valley, and one of only a few publicly owned ahupuaʻa, or ancient Hawaiian land division, in the state.

1. Ahupuaa O Kahana State Park

A popular campground is the Ahupuaa O Kahana State Park. It is the only land division owned by the state that connects the ocean to the mountains. There are several hiking trails, archaeological sites like the remnants of a Native Hawaiian heiau (temple), and even a prehistoric fishpond. It’s one of the wettest valleys on the island, so bring your rain gear. Up to ten campsites are available here.

You’ll find Ahupuaa O Kahana State Park at 55-222 Kamehameha Highway, Kaaawa. They are open from 7 am to 7:45 pm daily. The cost is $18 per night for nonresidents (up to six people, $3 per night for each additional person), and children ages 2 and under are free. The camping permit is free. Click here for more information, permits, and reservations. 

Pros: 

  • Interesting archaeological sites
  • Free camping permit
  • Mild weather

Cons: 

  • Only a few sites available 
  • A little hard to access

2. Malaekahana State Recreation Area and Campground

The Malaekahana beach campground is on 110 acres that are home to hundreds of shady ironwood trees and a sandy beach. The campground has lots of picnic tables, with up to 37 campsites available. There is a camp store if you forget minor things like batteries, lighter fluid, or other essentials. The water is calm enough to swim, paddleboard, or snorkel here, and there are kayak, surfboard, and bodyboard rentals available. Check out the sea turtles and whales offshore or watch some endangered seabirds from the nearby sanctuary. 

The campground is privately managed and it is one of the safest campgrounds on Oahu’s North Shore. It has staff on-site as well as a gated entrance. The campground has 26 tent campsites, 5 vehicle campsites, 40 plantation huts, and 4 plantation suites. Fees vary for each type of accommodation (see below). There is also a group camping section that can accommodate up to 20 campers. Outdoor showers are available, there are fire pits at each campsite, and there is even a food truck where you can purchase basic breakfast and lunch meals. 

You’ll find the Malaekahana beach campground at 56-335 Kamehameha Highway, Kahuku. Click here to make reservations. The cost is $9.41 per night, per person for tent or vehicle camping; $58.82 per night for a small, basic plantation-style hut that sleeps up to four people; or $117.65 per night for a plantation suite (sleeps up to four) with electricity, beds and larger interior space. 

Pros: 

  • Calm water for swimming
  • Very safe
  • Sea turtles and whales

Cons: 

  • Limited camping options
  • Only outdoor showers

3. Ho’omaluhia Botanical Garden

This lush, 400-acre rainforest park of Ho‘omaluhia Botanical Garden in Kāne‘ohe, backed by the majestic Koolau mountains, is a peaceful refuge indeed. The garden was designed and built in the early 1980s by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to provide flood protection for Kāne‘ohe. There are up to 20 weekend campsites with restrooms, outdoor showers, and picnic areas, where you can hike, and also fish and feed the ducks at the lake. 

This place is a plant lover’s paradise, with labeled flora, cool, leafy places to pitch your tent and even catch-and-release fishing in the lake. You can reach this relaxing site in less than 30 minutes from urban Honolulu. Bring a permit and mosquito repellent and be prepared for some rain and muddy conditions.

You’ll find the Ho‘omaluhia Botanical Garden at 45-680 Luluku Road, Kāne‘ohe. Reserve a campsite and print your permit here. Camping is open from 9 am on Friday through 4 pm on Monday. There is free catch-and-release fishing on Saturdays and Sundays, from 10 am to 2 pm. The cost is $32 for 3-day camping permits, which are available two weeks before your camping date. 

Pros: 

  • Interesting flora and fauna
  • Catch-and-release fishing
  • Cooler weather

Cons: 

  • Only a few sites available 
  • A lot of bugs at times

4. Bellows Field Beach Park, Waimānalo

This gorgeous white-sand beach park has up to 50 campsites in two sections: one that requires a military ID and a public one run by the City and County of Honolulu. Both sections offer attractive beachside camping options with perfectly soft sand, ironwood trees along the shore, clear blue water, and stunning sunrises. 

Bellows Air Force Base has a few additional amenities: there are some basic beach cabins, some group and RV campsites, equipment rentals, more restrooms and showers, a mini-mart, and a few fast-food restaurants. This is an excellent place to do some sunbathing and relaxing by the beach, but if you go swimming, do be aware of the posted jellyfish warning signs.

You’ll find this place at 220 Tinker Rd. (Bellows Air Force Base) or 41-043 Kalanianaole Highway (public), Waimānalo. Be aware that it is open to the public on weekends and holidays only, and campgrounds are not available before noon on Friday. The office is closed between 8 pm and 6 am. The cost is $32 for a 3-day camping permit (Friday through Monday). Click here for more information, permits, and reservations. 

Pros: 

  • Amazing scenery
  • Beachside camping
  • Mini-mart

Cons: 

  • Jellyfish
  • A lot of bugs at times
View at Kualoa Regional Park in Oahu, Hawaii

Halfway up the coast toward Oahu’s legendary North Shore, Kualoa Regional Park offers breathtaking views

5. Kualoa Regional Park and Campground 

You’ll find two campgrounds at this 150-acre peninsula on Kualoa Bay: Campground A and Campground B. The smaller, shady Campground A is closed during the summer after Memorial Day Weekend for a children’s camp but it reopens on Labor Day Weekend. Campground B has up to 14 campsites with bathrooms and outdoor showers, as well as amazing views of the iconic Oahu islet known as Chinaman’s Hat. While in the area, you can visit the Heeia fishpond and the Kualoa Ranch, where “Jurassic Park” was filmed. 

You’ll find this place at 49-479 Kamehameha Highway, Kāne‘ohe. The gates are closed from 8 pm to 7 am. The cost is $32 for a 3-day camping permit (Friday through Monday), and $52 for a five-day permit (Friday through Wednesday). Click here for more information, permits, and reservations.

Pros: 

  • Large campground with many options
  • Clean bathrooms
  • Good for families

Cons: 

  • Can get crowded
  • A lot of bugs at times

Bonus Attractions 

Covering an area of 384 acres, the Keaiwa Heaiau State Recreation Area has a camping area, several picnic tables, and the very popular Aiea Loop hiking trail. There are also covered pavilions and barbecue grills and up to four campsites. Another popular attraction is Sand Island State Recreation Area. This 102-acre piece of land is the only campsite in urban Honolulu, overlooking Honolulu Harbor, and there are up to 35 campsites available.

A Few Other Options 

There are a few other camping options on the North Shore. From a Sunset Beach treehouse bungalow to an eco-hideaway at the base of Mount Ka‘ala, you can experience an outdoor getaway complete with a bed, kitchenette with refrigerator, and even a private shower. 

For camping spots with access to some of Oahu’s most scenic trails, spend the night in the Mokulē‘ia Forest Reserve. Toss a tent in your four-wheel drive and visit Peacock Flats. Hike along the Mokulē‘ia Trail for an unparalleled view of Oahu, with both the west and north coasts at once. You can also stop at Three Corners, a lookout point connecting Mount Ka‘ala and the valleys of Mākua, ‘Ōhikilolo, and Makaleha. It is easy to reach this area off Farrington Highway before Yokohama Bay. 

Camping at City and County of Honolulu Campsites 

To get a camping permit for one of the City and County of Honolulu campsites online, you can do most of it from the comfort of your own home. Click here for more information, permits, and reservations. Camping permits may also be obtained in person at the DPR Permits office on the ground floor of the Fasi Municipal building at 650 South King Street in Honolulu.

Here is a full alphabetical list of all of the City and County of Honolulu campsites that can be booked in advance: 

  • Bellows Field Beach Park: 50 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Hauula Beach Park: 8 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Kahua Kuou (Hoomaluhia): 8 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Kahua Lehua (Hoomaluhia): 6 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Kahua Nui Makai (Hoomaluhia): 15 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Kaiaka Bay Beach Park: 7 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Kalaeloa Beach Park: 13 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Keaau Beach Park: 25 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Kokololio Beach Park: 5 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Kualoa A Regional Park: 7 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Kualoa B Regional Park: 14 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Lualualei Beach Park: 6 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Maili Beach Park: 12 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Nanakuli Beach Park: 11 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Swanzy Beach Park: 9 campsites – 3 day campground 
  • Waimanalo Bay Beach Park: 10 campsites – 5 day campground 
  • Waimanalo Beach Park: 19 campsites – 5 day campground 

Fees

In terms of the City and County of Honolulu campsite fees: if you plan to stay at a 3-day campground, the fee is $32. The fee for a 5-day campground is $52. These are flat fees. You pay this no matter if you plan to stay for just 1 night or for the entire time (3 or 5 days). The fee is per campsite. Each campsite is for up to 10 people. Camping always begins on Friday starting at 5 pm and extends through the weekend ending on either Monday at 8 am (3 days) or Wednesday at 8 am (5 days). 

For the state campsite fees: for Hawaii residents, the cost is $12 per campsite per night for up to 6 persons and $2 per night for each additional person. Children 2 and under free and the maximum fee per site is $20/night. For non-residents, the cost is $18 per campsite per night for up to 6 persons and $3 per night for each additional person, with a maximum fee per site of $30/night.

Say Aloha to Oahu!

Get your bags packed and a big group of friends together to start following all of your special Hawaiian dreams! Simply bring along a bit of gear and a survival pack, and you’ll be able to experience the rich beauty of one of Hawaii’s most beautiful islands. All in all, we are certain that you will find Oahu the perfect place to simply say “aloha” to all it has to offer when you get your sights set on a camping trip here.

Continue Reading

Outdoor Blog

The Evolution of Outdoor Apparel: How Fashion Meets Functionality in the Wilderness

Published

on

The wilderness beckons with the promise of adventure, but any seasoned hunter knows that what you wear can make or break your experience. Gone are the days when outdoor apparel was purely utilitarian. Today, fashion and functionality blend seamlessly to create gear that’s not only practical but also stylish. From the latest camouflage patterns to weather-resistant fabrics, let’s explore the evolution of outdoor apparel and how it’s revolutionizing the way we approach the great outdoors.

Camouflage: The Stylish Science of Stealth

Camouflage has come a long way from the simple green and brown patterns of yesteryear. Modern camouflage designs are now a blend of advanced science and cutting-edge style. These patterns aren’t just about blending into the background; they’re about creating an optical illusion that makes the wearer nearly invisible to wildlife. 

Contemporary camo gear incorporates a variety of colors and textures to match different environments, from dense forests to arid deserts. This evolution in design is as much about aesthetics as it is about effectiveness, allowing hunters to move through their chosen terrain with confidence and stealth.

The shift towards more sophisticated camouflage patterns also reflects a broader trend in outdoor apparel: the desire for gear that looks good and performs even better. Hunters today want apparel that makes a statement while still providing the ultimate in concealment. Whether it’s a jacket with a sleek, modern design or pants that offer the perfect balance of comfort and camouflage, today’s outdoor apparel combines fashion and function like never before.

Layering: The Key to Comfort and Style

Layering is a critical concept in outdoor apparel, offering both practical and aesthetic benefits. Modern layering systems are designed to regulate body temperature and provide protection from the elements. However, they also offer a chance to showcase personal style. Successful layering starts with choosing pieces that work well together both functionally and visually.

Base layers, for instance, have evolved from simple thermal wear to stylish garments that can be worn on their own or as part of a layered ensemble. These pieces are often made from advanced fabrics that provide warmth without bulk, ensuring that hunters can stay comfortable and mobile. Mid-layers add another dimension of style and functionality, offering insulation while allowing for breathability. Softshell jackets and vests come in many different colors and designs, making it easy to find pieces that suit individual tastes. 

Layering can also help you catch different kinds of animals. For instance, when you’re looking for turkey hunting tips, it’s important to look at the best kinds of layering to stay incognito and catch the best birds. Choosing the right layers can make a significant difference in staying comfortable and concealed during long hours in the field.

Footwear: From Trail to Trendsetter

Footwear is another area where outdoor apparel has seen significant evolution. In the past, hunting boots were purely functional, but, today, they still offer these essential qualities but have also become a fashion statement. Modern hunting boots come in a variety of styles, from traditional leather to contemporary synthetic materials, and are available in a range of colors and designs.

The advancements in footwear technology have been remarkable. Today’s hunting boots are designed to be lightweight yet durable, with features like waterproof membranes, breathable linings, and advanced traction systems. These innovations ensure that hunters can move comfortably and safely through any environment. But it’s not just about functionality; the aesthetic appeal of modern hunting boots is undeniable. Many boots are designed with sleek, stylish lines that make them suitable for wearing both in the field and in more casual settings.

High-Performance Gear: Pushing the Boundaries of Innovation

When it comes to hunting, high-performance gear is a game-changer. This is the section where outdoor apparel truly shines, combining cutting-edge technology with sleek design to create products that offer unmatched performance. Performance hunting gear includes everything from moisture-wicking base layers to high-tech outerwear designed to withstand the harshest conditions.

Today’s high-performance apparel utilizes advanced materials that are both lightweight and durable. Fabrics like Gore-Tex and other proprietary blends offer superior protection against wind and water while maintaining breathability. These materials help regulate body temperature, keeping hunters comfortable in a wide range of environments. In addition to these practical benefits, high-performance gear often features ergonomic designs that allow for a full range of motion, ensuring that hunters can move freely and easily.

Sustainable Fashion: Eco-Friendly Choices for the Modern Hunter

Sustainability has become an increasingly important consideration in the world of outdoor apparel. Hunters who are passionate about preserving the wilderness they love to explore are now seeking out eco-friendly clothing options that minimize environmental impact. Eco-friendly outdoor apparel is made from sustainable materials such as recycled polyester, organic cotton, and biodegradable fibers. These materials offer the same performance benefits as traditional fabrics but with a lower environmental footprint. 

Continue Reading

Outdoor Blog

The Role of Camouflage in Wildlife Photography and Hunting

Published

on

Camouflage plays a vital role in the worlds of wildlife photography and hunting, serving as an indispensable tool for enthusiasts and professionals alike. It’s not just about blending into the environment; it’s about becoming a part of it. Camouflage allows for closer interactions with wildlife, ensuring more successful hunts and breathtaking photographs. Here, we explore the key roles camouflage plays in these outdoor activities.

Blending In: The Art of Disappearing

One of the primary roles of camouflage is to help the wearer blend seamlessly into their surroundings. This art of disappearing is crucial whether you’re capturing a stunning image of a deer at dawn or patiently waiting for your prey during hunting season. In wildlife photography, the goal is to get as close as possible without disturbing the natural behavior of the animals. Camouflage clothing, face paint, and even equipment coverings can make the difference between a once-in-a-lifetime shot and a missed opportunity. 

For hunters, blending into the environment increases the chances of a successful hunt. Animals have keen senses, and the slightest hint of an unnatural shape or color can send them running. Camouflage gear allows hunters to become virtually invisible. This skill of blending in isn’t just about wearing the right colors; it’s about understanding the terrain, the light, and how to move with stealth.

Reducing the Human Scent and Sound

Another critical aspect of camouflage in both photography and hunting is the reduction of human scent and sound. Animals naturally use their sense of smell and hearing to detect potential threats. Successful hunting trips often hinge on the ability to minimize human presence in these sensory fields. Specially designed camouflage clothing can help mask human odors, making it harder for animals to pick up on your scent. 

Similarly, wildlife photographers need to consider their scent and sound output. Even the most visually inconspicuous photographer can ruin a perfect shot if their scent or a stray noise alerts the animals. Using scent-masking sprays and moving with extreme caution are part of the camouflage strategy, ensuring that photographers can get closer to their subjects without causing alarm.

Enhancing Patience and Stealth

Patience and stealth are virtues that every hunter and wildlife photographer must possess, and camouflage gear enhances these qualities. When you’re properly camouflaged, you can afford to be more patient, knowing that you are less likely to be detected. This confidence allows for longer waiting periods in prime locations, increasing the chances of capturing that perfect shot or making a successful kill.

For wildlife photographers, the need for patience is paramount. Animals won’t always show up when you want them to, and sudden movements can ruin hours of careful preparation. Camouflage helps in remaining undetected, allowing photographers to wait silently and still for the right moment. Hunters also benefit from this patience, as it enables them to wait for the ideal shot without rushing and potentially missing their target.

Specialized Camouflage for Different Hunts: Moose Hunting

Different types of hunting require specialized camouflage, and moose hunting is a prime example. Moose are large, elusive animals often found in dense forests and swampy areas. Successful moose hunters understand the need for specific camouflage patterns that mimic the unique environments where moose thrive. Moose hunting clothes are designed to blend into the dark, shadowy forests and marshes, making hunters virtually invisible to these keen-eyed creatures.

During moose hunting season, the right camouflage can make or break your experience. Moose have excellent vision and can easily detect unnatural movements or colors. By wearing appropriate camouflage, hunters can move quietly and position themselves for a clear shot without spooking their quarry. 

The specialized gear often includes clothing that covers the entire body, including gloves and face masks, ensuring that no part of the hunter stands out against the natural backdrop. This thorough approach is essential in moose hunting, where patience and precision are key.

Capturing Authentic Wildlife Behavior

Wildlife photography isn’t just about taking beautiful pictures; it’s about capturing authentic wildlife behavior. Camouflage allows photographers to become invisible observers, documenting animals in their natural state without any human interference. This is particularly important for conservation efforts, as understanding genuine animal behavior can inform better strategies for protecting various species and their habitats.

Photographers who use camouflage can get closer to their subjects, often capturing moments that would be impossible to see from a distance. This proximity results in more intimate and detailed shots, showcasing the animals’ daily activities, interactions, and environments. 

The authenticity of these images can inspire greater appreciation and respect for wildlife, encouraging more people to support conservation initiatives. By blending into the environment, photographers can witness and document behaviors that might otherwise go unnoticed, providing invaluable insights into the natural world.

 

outdoorcommand.com (Post 2)

 

The Evolution of Outdoor Apparel: How Fashion Meets Functionality in the Wilderness

The wilderness beckons with the promise of adventure, but any seasoned hunter knows that what you wear can make or break your experience. Gone are the days when outdoor apparel was purely utilitarian. Today, fashion and functionality blend seamlessly to create gear that’s not only practical but also stylish. From the latest camouflage patterns to weather-resistant fabrics, let’s explore the evolution of outdoor apparel and how it’s revolutionizing the way we approach the great outdoors.

Camouflage: The Stylish Science of Stealth

Camouflage has come a long way from the simple green and brown patterns of yesteryear. Modern camouflage designs are now a blend of advanced science and cutting-edge style. These patterns aren’t just about blending into the background; they’re about creating an optical illusion that makes the wearer nearly invisible to wildlife. 

Contemporary camo gear incorporates a variety of colors and textures to match different environments, from dense forests to arid deserts. This evolution in design is as much about aesthetics as it is about effectiveness, allowing hunters to move through their chosen terrain with confidence and stealth.

The shift towards more sophisticated camouflage patterns also reflects a broader trend in outdoor apparel: the desire for gear that looks good and performs even better. Hunters today want apparel that makes a statement while still providing the ultimate in concealment. Whether it’s a jacket with a sleek, modern design or pants that offer the perfect balance of comfort and camouflage, today’s outdoor apparel combines fashion and function like never before.

Layering: The Key to Comfort and Style

Layering is a critical concept in outdoor apparel, offering both practical and aesthetic benefits. Modern layering systems are designed to regulate body temperature and provide protection from the elements. However, they also offer a chance to showcase personal style. Successful layering starts with choosing pieces that work well together both functionally and visually.

Base layers, for instance, have evolved from simple thermal wear to stylish garments that can be worn on their own or as part of a layered ensemble. These pieces are often made from advanced fabrics that provide warmth without bulk, ensuring that hunters can stay comfortable and mobile. Mid-layers add another dimension of style and functionality, offering insulation while allowing for breathability. Softshell jackets and vests come in many different colors and designs, making it easy to find pieces that suit individual tastes. 

Layering can also help you catch different kinds of animals. For instance, when you’re looking for turkey hunting tips, it’s important to look at the best kinds of layering to stay incognito and catch the best birds. Choosing the right layers can make a significant difference in staying comfortable and concealed during long hours in the field.

Footwear: From Trail to Trendsetter

Footwear is another area where outdoor apparel has seen significant evolution. In the past, hunting boots were purely functional, but, today, they still offer these essential qualities but have also become a fashion statement. Modern hunting boots come in a variety of styles, from traditional leather to contemporary synthetic materials, and are available in a range of colors and designs.

The advancements in footwear technology have been remarkable. Today’s hunting boots are designed to be lightweight yet durable, with features like waterproof membranes, breathable linings, and advanced traction systems. These innovations ensure that hunters can move comfortably and safely through any environment. But it’s not just about functionality; the aesthetic appeal of modern hunting boots is undeniable. Many boots are designed with sleek, stylish lines that make them suitable for wearing both in the field and in more casual settings.

High-Performance Gear: Pushing the Boundaries of Innovation

When it comes to hunting, high-performance gear is a game-changer. This is the section where outdoor apparel truly shines, combining cutting-edge technology with sleek design to create products that offer unmatched performance. Performance hunting gear includes everything from moisture-wicking base layers to high-tech outerwear designed to withstand the harshest conditions.

Today’s high-performance apparel utilizes advanced materials that are both lightweight and durable. Fabrics like Gore-Tex and other proprietary blends offer superior protection against wind and water while maintaining breathability. These materials help regulate body temperature, keeping hunters comfortable in a wide range of environments. In addition to these practical benefits, high-performance gear often features ergonomic designs that allow for a full range of motion, ensuring that hunters can move freely and easily.

Sustainable Fashion: Eco-Friendly Choices for the Modern Hunter

Sustainability has become an increasingly important consideration in the world of outdoor apparel. Hunters who are passionate about preserving the wilderness they love to explore are now seeking out eco-friendly clothing options that minimize environmental impact. Eco-friendly outdoor apparel is made from sustainable materials such as recycled polyester, organic cotton, and biodegradable fibers. These materials offer the same performance benefits as traditional fabrics but with a lower environmental footprint. 

 

Continue Reading

Outdoor Blog

13 Best Hot Springs in Utah

Published

on

Hot-Water-Springs-in-Utah

In the heart of the rugged and diverse landscapes of Utah, a collection of natural geothermal wonders awaits your discovery – the state’s best-kept secrets, its hot springs. Utah’s hot springs offer an escape from the ordinary, a chance to soak in warm, healing waters while surrounded by the awe-inspiring beauty of the state’s wilderness.

From hidden desert gems to alpine hideaways, Utah’s hot springs provide an array of unique experiences. In this guide, we embark on a journey to explore the finest hot springs Utah has to offer. Each of these geothermal treasures is complemented by its unique charm, beckoning travelers and nature enthusiasts to unwind in their therapeutic embrace. So, pack your sense of adventure and a desire for relaxation as we venture through the desert wonders, mountain retreats, and serene oases that make up the best hot springs in Utah.

1. Mystic Hot Springs/Monroe Hot Springs

Mystic-Hot-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @mystichotsprings

Mystic Hot Springs, a unique oasis nestled between Fishlake National Forest and Sevier Plateau in Sevier County, Utah, offers a remarkable blend of natural wonder and bohemian charm. The resort boasts stunning valley views, making it a captivating destination. What sets these hot springs apart are the way they cascade over massive rock walls adorned with captivating calcium deposits. The hot spring waters here range from 100 to 106 degrees Fahrenheit, offering a variety of soaking experiences. Several tubs are thoughtfully integrated into the natural landscape, providing visitors with a range of options to unwind in these soothing waters.
  • Location: Monroe, near Richfield off I-70, approximately 1.5 hours west of Capitol Reef National Park.
  • Temperature: 100-106°F
  • Things to do: Indulge in two spacious hot spring swimming pools, or choose the private vintage bathtubs surrounded by mineral-formed rocks for a truly Instagram-worthy experience. Water temperatures in the tubs vary, ranging from 99 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Mystic Hot Springs goes beyond the relaxing soaks by offering mindful massages and Hypnotherapy sessions focused on aligning your body, mind, and heart.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round, but summer offers the added allure of music festivals and concerts.
  • Cost: Admission fees apply, and additional fees may be charged for specific services.
  • How to Reach: Located near Monroe, Utah, the hot springs are accessible from Richfield off I-70, and are approximately 1.5 hours west of Capitol Reef National Park.

2. Homestead Resort/Crater Hot Spring, Midway

Homestead-Resort-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @homesteadresort_utah

Tucked away in the scenic foothills of the Wasatch Valley, Homestead Resort beckons as a tranquil hot spring retreat. Boasting an array of amenities, including a swimming pool, golfing facilities, and well-appointed rooms, it sets the stage for a relaxing escape. However, the crown jewel of this resort is the Crater Hot Spring, a geothermal marvel nestled within a 55-foot tall limestone rock.
  • Location: Midway, about 45 minutes east of Salt Lake City.
  • Temperature: 90-96°F
  • Things to do: Encased within a beehive-shaped limestone dome formed over 10,000 years ago, the Crater Hot Spring offers a unique experience regardless of the season. The underground cavern, bathed in natural light filtering through a hole in the dome’s apex, presents a distinctive destination within Utah. This geological wonder maintains a soothing water temperature between 90 and 96 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round.
  • Cost: Admission fees apply, and additional fees may be charged for specific services.
  • How to reach: From Salt Lake City, take a drive that’s roughly 45 minutes to the east, and you’ll find yourself in the charming town of Midway, where Homestead Resort is nestled.

3. Inlet Park Hot Springs, Saratoga Springs

Inlet-Park-Hot-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @kyccl

Inlet Park Hot Springs, a publicly accessible natural hot spring nestled beside the picturesque Utah Lake, offers a convenient and relaxing soaking experience. The hot springs are easily reached with parking facilities nearby, ensuring accessibility for visitors. The main attraction here is a generously sized hot spring pool, stretching approximately 40 feet in length and width and plunging up to 3 feet deep. The water in this pool can reach balmy temperatures of up to 110 degrees, providing a rejuvenating soak. It’s advisable to wear water shoes or tread cautiously, as the popularity of this spot sometimes results in leftover debris. Please be aware that the hot springs close at 10pm, and soaking beyond that hour may incur substantial fines.

  • Location: Saratoga Springs, approximately 40 minutes south of Salt Lake City, situated northwest of the Provo metropolitan area.
  • Temperature: Up to 110°F
  • Things to do: Inlet Park Hot Springs is a favorite hotspot near Utah Lake, known for its three distinct pools, each offering water temperatures of up to 109 degrees. These pools feature muddy bottoms, so wearing water shoes is recommended if you prefer to keep your feet clean. When the heat becomes too much to bear, you can cool off in the closest pool to the lake, which tends to be muddier. The city has made efforts to develop the area around the hot springs, including a pathway from Inlet Park’s parking area.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round.
  • Cost: Admission fees may apply.
  • How to reach: Located in Saratoga Springs, this hot spring is situated roughly 40 minutes south of Salt Lake City, to the northwest of the Provo metropolitan area.

4. Crystal Hot Springs, Honeyville

Crystal-Hot-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @crystalhotsprings

Crystal Hot Springs, located just over an hour’s drive from Salt Lake City in Box Elder County, Utah, is a delightful family-friendly hot spring resort with a wide range of attractions. The resort boasts seven hot spring pools, three hot spring waterfalls, and even a thrilling waterslide. Whether you’re seeking a day of relaxation or an extended getaway, Crystal Hot Springs has you covered with RV spaces and camping options available. The hot spring pools feature a diverse range of temperatures, ranging from a comfortable 85 degrees to a toasty 110 degrees. After soaking up the warmth, cool off by taking an exhilarating plunge under the cold waterfall.

  • Location: Honeyville, approximately one hour north of Salt Lake City, in the Brigham City area.
  • Temperature: 85-110°F
  • Things to do: Crystal Hot Springs, known for having the highest mineral content in the world and the unique occurrence of hot and cold springs in a single location, offers an array of attractions. You can unwind in three mineral hot tubs, take a dip in two large pools, and experience the excitement of a double water slide, all of which are open year-round. The water temperatures in the pools and springs span a wide range, from 65 to 134 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round.
  • Cost: Admission fees apply, and camping fees may vary.
  • How to reach: Situated in Honeyville, Crystal Hot Springs is conveniently located about one hour north of Salt Lake City, in the Brigham City area.

5. Veyo Pool Hot Springs

Veyo-Pool-Hot-Springs
Photo Courtesy: @veyopool

Veyo Pool Hot Springs is a family-friendly hot spring resort located near Zion National Park in Utah. This inviting destination features a generously-sized hot spring-fed swimming pool with water temperatures ranging from 94 to 98 degrees. Whether you’re seeking a cozy room, a camping spot, or an RV site, Veyo Pool Hot Springs offers various accommodation options for all types of travelers.

Founded over a century ago, Veyo Pools is nestled amidst the dramatic desert canyons and towering cliffs of Utah. Although the pool’s temperature may not be scorching, it becomes an ideal retreat during the hot Utah summers when desert temperatures can exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Families will find it particularly appealing, with historic farmhouse lodgings, tent camping areas, and ample RV spaces.

  • Location: Veyo, near Zion National Park, one of Utah’s premier national parks.
  • Temperature: 94-98°F
  • Things to do: Veyo Pool Hot Springs is an excellent choice if you’re planning to explore the national parks in the southern part of Utah. This historic hot spring destination offers a large pool filled with geothermal mineral water, providing a unique soaking experience. The resort features camping facilities, showers, restrooms, parking, a gift shop, and towel rentals.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round, with summer being an ideal time for a refreshing dip.
  • Cost: Admission is $16, and children under 2 enter for free.
  • How to reach: Veyo Pool Hot Springs is located in Veyo, near Zion National Park, making it a convenient stop when exploring the southern national parks of Utah.

6. Diamond Fork/Fifth Water Hot Springs

Fifth-Water-Hot-Springs
Photo Courtesy: @bethanyboundlessbody

Diamond Fork Hot Springs, also known as Fifth Water Hot Springs, is a captivating natural oasis located approximately 30 minutes outside of Provo, Utah. These hot springs are renowned for their extraordinary natural beauty. As you venture on the moderate 2.5-mile hike to reach them, you’ll discover multiple rock-walled pools, each filled with milky blue and green-hued water that flows from one to another. The water temperature in these pools ranges up to a cozy 102 degrees, providing an array of soaking options.

  • Location: Accessible via the trailhead on Diamond Fork Road, about 1.5 hours southeast from Salt Lake City, and approximately 30 minutes east of Spanish Fork on U.S. 89.
  • Temperature: 102-111°F
  • Things to do: The journey to Diamond Fork Hot Springs is an adventure in itself. You’ll embark on a 2.5-mile moderate difficulty hike that takes you through scenic landscapes and past three picturesque waterfalls. The hike can be challenging, especially in winter when the road is closed, necessitating a 10-mile roundtrip trek. Upon reaching the hot springs, you can explore various pools of varying sizes and temperatures. For a quieter experience, hike to the higher second waterfall pools, which are less crowded and offer stunning views. It’s essential to bring plenty of water, wear suitable hiking shoes, and pack a towel and dry clothes for the hike back.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round, but be prepared for a longer hike in the winter when the road is closed.
  • Cost: Admission is free.
  • How to reach: The trailhead to Diamond Fork Hot Springs is situated on Diamond Fork Road, making it accessible from Salt Lake City and Spanish Fork. Be sure to check the road conditions, especially during winter, to plan your visit accordingly.

7. Meadow Hot Springs, Meadow

Meadow-Hot-Springs
Photo Courtesy: @thereeemster

Meadow Hot Springs, located just south of Fillmore, Utah, in the charming town of Meadow, is a remarkable gem among natural hot springs in the United States. These hot springs offer a truly unique experience, set in a picturesque landscape. You’ll discover two clear water hot spring pools, with the larger one plunging to an impressive 25 feet deep and maintaining a toasty temperature of around 100 degrees. In the smaller pool, which is slightly cooler, you’ll even find small fish that offer a surprising spa experience as they give your feet a gentle manicure. It’s important to note that Meadow Hot Springs are privately owned, and visitors are kindly requested to respect the landowners’ rules, which allow them to share this natural wonder with the public.

  • Location: Situated in Meadow, Utah, this hot spring can be found just off I-15, roughly 1.5 hours south of Provo and two hours northwest of Bryce Canyon National Park.
  • Temperature: 100°F
  • Things to do: Meadow Hot Springs is perfect for a relaxing soak and enjoying the scenic surroundings. With two clear water hot spring pools, you can choose between a warm dip or a slightly cooler experience. Don’t miss the chance to observe and interact with the small fish in the smaller pool, providing an unexpected and delightful experience.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round access, and it’s particularly enchanting in winter when you can relish the pristine environment, accentuated by the contrast between freezing air temperatures and the soothing hot waters.
  • Cost: Free admission.
  • How to reach: Meadow Hot Springs are conveniently located off I-15, accessible via a 5-mile, non-technical dirt road. While the journey might get your vehicle a little dirty, the experience is well worth it.

8. Baker Hot Springs: A Tranquil Desert Retreat

Baker-Hot-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @vinnyvedivechi

Nestled in the heart of Utah’s expansive West Desert, Baker Hot Springs offers an idyllic escape for those seeking solace amidst the arid wilderness. Just a short drive from Provo and in close proximity to the striking Great Basin National Park, this natural thermal wonder promises a serene oasis. As you embark on your journey, prepare to be enchanted by three cement-walled tubs brimming with warm, mineral-rich waters, providing the perfect setting for relaxation.

The road leading to Baker Hot Springs might be a bit rugged, and a 4×4 vehicle is advisable, but it will guide you directly to these inviting springs. While the tubs are not meticulously cleaned, this unspoiled state adds to the springs’ unique allure. The flexibility to adjust the water temperature by mixing the warm spring water with a refreshing flow of cold water allows for a personalized soaking experience. With its simplicity, undeveloped charm, and natural surroundings, Baker Hot Springs offers a truly exceptional desert escape.

  • Location: Delta, about two hours southwest of Provo in Utah’s West Desert.
  • Temperature: The springs boast a toasty temperature of around 107°F.
  • Things to do: Enjoy a peaceful soak, adjusting the water to your preferred temperature in the cement-walled tubs amidst the Utah desert.
  • Best time to visit: Year-round escapade for those seeking a tranquil soak in the midst of nature.
  • Cost: Admission is free, making it an accessible natural hot spring experience.
  • How to Reach: Accessing the hot springs involves a bit of a rough drive down a dirt road, preferably with a 4×4 vehicle for ease. The road leads directly to the springs.

9. Stinky Hot Springs

Stinky-Hot-Springs-UtahPhoto Courtesy: @wickedpixiecreation

Stinky Hot Springs, true to their name, are renowned for their distinct sulfuric aroma, showcasing the rich mineral content in their waters. Nestled on private property, the gracious owner allows public use, inviting enthusiasts to enjoy the therapeutic effects of these springs. Comprising three cement hot spring tubs, these geothermal pools provide a unique and rejuvenating soaking experience.

  • Location: Accessible right off a highway, ensuring convenient and straightforward access.
  • Temperature: The hot springs maintain a temperature that aligns with their rejuvenating properties, laden with minerals.
  • Things to do: Immerse yourself in the mineral-rich waters, experiencing the potential health benefits these springs have to offer.
  • Best time to visit: Stinky Hot Springs are a year-round retreat for those seeking the benefits of geothermal soaking.
  • Cost: The hot springs are open to the public for free, offering an accessible natural hot spring experience.

10. Belmont Hot Springs RV Park and Resort

Belmont-Hot-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @belmontparksrec

Belmont Hot Springs RV Park and Resort is a unique and all-encompassing destination for hot spring enthusiasts. Situated in northern Utah, near the Idaho border, this resort offers a distinct blend of natural relaxation and outdoor adventure. What sets Belmont apart is its combination of hot spring pools, nearby hiking trails, and electrical hookups for RV travelers.

  • Location: Nestled in northern Utah, near the Idaho border, making it an ideal stop for travelers on a Southwest road trip.
  • Temperature: The hot springs at Belmont RV Park maintain a soothing jacuzzi-like temperature, ranging from 97 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Things to do: Enjoy a soak in the spacious hot spring lake, perfect for paddleboarding or leisurely relaxation. Scuba diving opportunities are available, providing a unique underwater perspective. The surrounding area features numerous hiking trails, and Nordic Valley Ski Resort is just a short drive away.
  • Best time to visit: Belmont Hot Springs welcomes visitors year-round, ensuring access to geothermal relaxation and outdoor activities in all seasons.
  • Cost: For those staying at the RV Park, the nightly fee is $40, with a weekly rate of $250. The extensive amenities provided include restrooms, showers, hot water, front desk services, laundry facilities, and a clubhouse. Nearby attractions, including ski slopes, add to the appeal of this remarkable destination.

11. Ogden Hot Springs

Ogden-Hot-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @hotspringadventure

Discover the secluded, natural geothermal escape of Ogden Hot Springs in Utah. The status of these mountain springs may seem uncertain online, but rest assured, they’re open and ready for those seeking a tranquil and authentic soaking experience. A scenic hiking trail winds through the forest to reach these hidden mountain springs, each offering its unique temperature. Embrace the serene and refreshing natural waters in the company of lush wilderness. Ogden Hot Springs enforces a strict “Leave No Trace” policy, emphasizing a commitment to preserving the environment. The springs are pristine and serene, free from the interference of glass, pets, or littering. While parking near the springs is limited, convenient options are available at the base of the canyon, just a short walk away from this hidden gem.

  • Location: Ogden, Utah
  • Temperature: Typically ranging between 97 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Things to do: Explore the multiple pools tucked away in Ogden’s beautiful wilderness, surrounded by nature’s tranquility.
  • Best time to visit: Open year-round, these hot springs offer a warm retreat no matter the season.
  • Cost: Enjoy free admission, making Ogden Hot Springs a natural and budget-friendly destination. The springs feature multiple pools, free parking, and a clothing-optional atmosphere.
  • How to Reach: Accessible via a scenic hiking trail through the forest. Limited parking is available near the springs, with additional options at the base of the canyon, requiring a short walk to the springs.

12. Red Hill Hot Springs, Monroe

Red-Hill-Hot-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @crazyraisinbuns

Nestled just a short 4-minute drive away from the renowned Mystic Hot Springs, Red Hill Hot Springs in Monroe, Utah, offers a tranquil escape without the crowds. These lesser-visited springs are a hidden gem, and the best part? They won’t cost you a dime. Four distinct pools provide options for relaxation, and the picturesque backdrop of the surrounding red rock formations adds to the allure of Red Hill Hot Springs.

Set against the awe-inspiring backdrop of Utah’s iconic red desert landscape, the inviting pools at Red Hill Hot Springs offer an intimate and serene soaking experience. These pools are relatively small, accommodating only a few people at a time. To savor the full wonder of these thermal springs, consider an early morning visit when you can have one of these little pieces of paradise all to yourself. Additionally, the winter season presents an excellent opportunity to enjoy these hot springs in solitude.

  • Location: Monroe, Utah
  • Temperature: Up to a toasty 154 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Things to do: Revel in the intimacy of smaller pools, surrounded by the beauty of red rock formations in the Utah desert.
  • Best time to visit: Open year-round, so you can enjoy the soothing waters in any season.
  • Cost: Free admission makes Red Hill Hot Springs a budget-friendly destination. The site includes amenities like pit toilets, a parking area, and multiple pools to choose from.

13. Horseshoe Warm Springs, Salt Lake City

Horseshoe-Warm-Springs-Utah
Photo Courtesy: @jhsfire

Nestled amidst Utah’s striking desert plains, Horseshoe Warm Springs offer a soothing oasis surrounded by fragrant sagebrush. These natural hot springs are a haven for those seeking muscle relaxation and a connection with the unique beauty of the desert. The springs derive their name from the distinct horseshoe-shaped pools they form, creating a captivating sight in Skull Valley, located in western Utah. Unlike traditional hot springs, the waters here are considered “warm springs,” boasting a comfortable temperature of around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. This makes Horseshoe Warm Springs particularly inviting during the summer months, offering a refreshing contrast to the desert’s arid climate.

The hot springs provide a tranquil escape, with a spacious deck running alongside, providing a perfect place for your four-legged friend to rest while you bask in the warm waters. Apart from the springs themselves, Horseshoe Warm Springs offer an array of experiences. The area is renowned for fishing, beckoning anglers to test their skills in its waters. Adventure enthusiasts will find plenty to do, including ATV rides and hiking trails, allowing you to explore the desert landscapes. Additionally, you have the opportunity to delve into history by visiting the nearby ghost town of Losepa.

  • Location: Skull Valley, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Temperature: The springs maintain a warm and consistent temperature of around 70 degrees.
  • Things to do: Rejuvenate with a soak in the horseshoe-shaped hot springs, and let your canine companion relax on the adjacent deck. Engage in fishing, explore nearby hiking trails, or embark on exciting ATV adventures in the area. For a touch of history, explore the intriguing ghost town of Losepa.
  • Best time to visit: Open year-round, with the summer season offering the allure of cooler waters amidst the desert heat.
  • Cost: Enjoy free admission, making Horseshoe Warm Springs a cost-effective escape.
  • How to Reach: Situated in Skull Valley near Salt Lake City, Horseshoe Warm Springs are easily accessible, offering a convenient retreat into the captivating desert landscapes.

Conclusion

Utah’s diverse and picturesque landscapes are not only renowned for their stunning red rock formations and majestic mountains but are also home to a collection of exquisite natural hot springs. From the mystic beauty of Mystic Hot Springs to the adventurous soak at Fifth Water Hot Springs and the calming serenity of Meadow Hot Springs, Utah’s geothermal wonders offer a range of experiences for all.

FAQs

Are these hot springs safe for children and families?

Most hot springs in Utah are family-friendly, but it’s essential to consider the water temperature and your child’s tolerance. Some hot springs have varying pool temperatures, making it easier to find a comfortable spot for children. Always supervise children closely and check individual hot spring rules for age restrictions.

Are the hot springs clothing-optional?

The clothing policy varies depending on the hot spring. Some hot springs are clothing-optional, while others strictly require swimwear. Always review the specific rules for each hot spring and adhere to them.

Can I bring food and drinks to the hot springs?

Policies regarding food and drinks differ between hot springs. Some may allow small snacks, while others strictly prohibit outside food and drinks. Always respect the rules of the hot spring you’re visiting and clean up after yourself.

Is camping allowed at these hot springs?

Camping policies vary widely among hot springs. Some hot springs have nearby campgrounds or even on-site accommodations, while others may prohibit camping. Check the specific rules and availability of camping options at the hot spring you plan to visit.

What’s the best time to visit Utah’s hot springs?

Many hot springs can be enjoyed year-round. The best time to visit depends on your preferences. Summer offers warm weather and often coincides with outdoor festivals, while winter provides a unique experience with snow-draped landscapes. Consider your tolerance for different temperatures and the activities you’d like to enjoy.

Are there any health precautions to take when visiting hot springs?

While hot springs are generally safe, it’s essential to be aware of potential health risks. Some hot springs have high mineral content, which can irritate sensitive skin or eyes. Avoid hot springs if you have open wounds or skin infections. Also, stay hydrated and avoid alcohol when soaking in hot springs.

What’s the etiquette at hot springs in Utah?

Observing proper hot spring etiquette is crucial. Always follow posted rules and guidelines, such as bathing suit requirements, no alcohol policies, and leave-no-trace principles. Respect the environment and other visitors by keeping noise levels to a minimum and cleaning up after yourself.

Are these hot springs wheelchair-accessible?

Accessibility varies from one hot spring to another. Some may have wheelchair-accessible facilities, while others may not be suitable for those with mobility challenges. Check with the specific hot spring to determine its accessibility features.

Do I need to make reservations in advance?

While some hot springs require reservations, many are open on a first-come, first-served basis. To secure your spot, especially during peak seasons or for accommodations, it’s advisable to make reservations ahead of time.

Can I bring my pet to the hot springs?

Pet policies differ among hot springs. Some are pet-friendly, while others do not allow animals. If you plan to bring your pet, check the specific rules of the hot spring to ensure you comply with their policies.

Continue Reading

Trending