California campground reservations are up 25% when compared with this same time a year ago, according to The Record of Stockton, Calif.
The heightened interest in camping, including RVing, comes at a time when vacation travel in California, in general, is down between 5% and 6%, according to a spokesman for the California Division of Tourism, who was interviewed by The Record.
The state division of tourism defines vacation travel as trips of 50 miles or more, added Fred Sater, spokesman for the state agency.
A 25% increase in campground reservations is not surprising since RV sales and rentals “have gone off the chart,” Sater said.
The same is true nationwide, according to Linda Profaizer, president of the National Association of RV Parks & Campgrounds (ARVC), who also was interviewed by The Record.
Many RV parks and campgrounds are reporting their reservations are up between 15% and 40% when compared with a year ago, Profaizer said.
Stays at many campgrounds and RV parks are tied to visits to state and national parks. In California, the state Parks Department is estimating that 93 million people will visit its 267 facilities during the year that will end on June 30, compared with 82.5 million people who visited its properties during the year that ended last June 30.
The Record also interviewed a couple from Sacramento who recently spent a weekend with their towable RV near Camanche Lake. They wanted to return this summer but no campground spaces will be available at Camanche Lake until September, when they will make their next visit.
Meanwhile, reservations at National Park campgrounds are heavily booked up, “but that’s always the case,” said Holly Bumback, spokesman for the Pacific West Region of the National Park Service.