Winter Beach Camping

The kids are back in school, football in underway and there is a certain crispness to the morning air. Summer is over, but that does not mean we have to put away our camping gear for another year and ride out the winter in suburban solitude!

Morro Strand State Beach, Morro Bay, California

Morro Strand State Beach, California

Camping is a year-round activity for us, due in part to the mild winter climate here in NorCal, but also because camping is just what our family does. We cannot stop being who we are, for six months of the year. For us, winter means beach camping, since our favorite Sierra camping spots are all above 7,000 feet and hopelessly buried in snow.

Beach camping is great in the winter, with many unique advantages over the summer months. For one thing, there are no bugs! But along those same lines, there are far fewer people, meaning campsites are much easier to reserve and you will probably have the place nearly to yourselves once you get there. Of course, camping in the rain is no fun, and trying to predict the weather in the winter months can be much more challenging. Our strategy is to just be ready to go and let the three-day forecast on Friday be our guide. If it turns into a family movie weekend, instead of a family beach camping weekend, there is always next week or next month.

Half Moon Bay State Beach, Half Moon Bay, California

Half Moon Bay State Beach, California

Whether in the mountains, at the beach or just somewhere in a backcountry forest, family camping is all about getting the kids outdoors so that they can appreciate something other than the TV set for awhile. Limiting this valuable activity to just a few months each year seems like a shame. Sure, you are going to need some warm clothes and maybe some better sleeping bags, but the coffee and hot chocolate will taste even better on a cool winter morning, and you will wonder why you did not start doing this earlier!

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4 thoughts on “Winter Beach Camping

  1. Thanks, Regina! Morro Strand is our favorite place down there, because the beach is awesome. It’s not much for tent camping, though – it’s pretty much just a parking lot. If you get a site on the ocean side, though, you should be able to set your tent up in the sand. There’s a good wind break between the campground and the ocean, so the wind won’t be too bad. Have fun!

  2. Great blog! We’d like to tent camp at Morro Strand…what info can you give me about the place? Thanks for your help.

  3. I bet that was great! We’ve kind of made camping at the beach our “thing” that we do for Thanksgiving, down here. We missed the big Mavericks surf competition by about a week, last year.

  4. Right on! My wife & I went camping last year for Christmas!
    The weather forecast was pretty bad so we spent a few extra bucks and reserved a yurt on the Southern Washington Coast. Fantastic! Watched deer during the day and went to sleep at night to the sound of the ocean waves breaking on the beach. Bright beautiful moon too!
    One of the most restful trips I’ve ever had.