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Tenting spots begin to guide up as demand will increase at Virginia State Parks

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CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WWBT) — As we begin to see more signs of normalcy, people are yearning for adventure. For Virginia State Parks, this means hundreds of thousands of people flock to campgrounds every year.

The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation estimates that nearly 1.17 million people camped at a Virginia State Park in 2021. That’s a 17% increase from 2020 and a 25% increase from 2019.

In Pocahontas State Park, you’re already seeing this influx of campers.

“Once the weather improves, we’re definitely seeing an increase in visitor numbers and visits,” said park manager Nate Clark. “We’ve already had a few busy weekends in April.”

As more people head out amid the pandemic this year, those numbers could continue to skyrocket.

“We’ve seen a lot more people over the last few years, a lot of new families, a lot of new kids coming out and enjoying the parks and taking advantage of the opportunities that we have to offer,” Clark said.

Unfortunately, demand is increasing and space is limited. If you look at the Virginia State Parks booking website, many weekend campgrounds are already taken for the summer season.

“Regardless of the year, weekends will be the busiest times, especially around the holidays,” Clark said. “But if you’re flexible and can travel during the weekday, you probably shouldn’t have a problem finding a campground in the system anywhere across the state.”

There are other overnight camping options that can help you save money on tents and other camping gear.

“We have camp huts, group huts, bunkhouses and yurts, so there’s a lot of different places to stay,” Clark said.

Resembling huts or tipis, ‘yurts’ are one of the less popular options and are still available on some weekends.

To book your place at the campsite or find out more about activities this summer, click here.

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