17 Finest Nationwide Parks to Go to in October » Native Adventurer


In search of the most effective nationwide parks to go to in October?

October is a good looking time to go to the Nationwide Parks. The children are again at school (yay, no youngsters!), fall colours are out, and it’s nice climate for getting outside.

best national parks to visit in octoberPin

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Final Up to date: September 29, 2022

Earlier than we get into it, we need to remind everybody to discover the parks responsibly utilizing the 7 Go away no Hint Rules. Have a plan, keep on established trails, perform something you carry in, depart what you discover, decrease campfire influence, respect wildlife, and be thoughtful of others.

In regards to the Nationwide Park by month Sequence

To place collectively this checklist, we’ve mixed our private experiences and ideas we gathered from locals and cross-referenced them with the climate, accessibility, native boards, seasonal sights like fall foliage or wildflowers, and particular occasions occurring within the space. We additionally thought-about any distinctive adventures solely provided at sure occasions of the 12 months to search out essentially the most optimum months to go to every Nationwide Park. Phew! that was quite a bit!

It took me a complete week of analysis, however since I’m a maximizer, it was price having a year-round calendar of adventures (publishing that quickly!). Additionally, take a look at our full checklist of all of the nationwide parks and all nationwide park models that embrace soon-to-be nationwide parks.

We additionally selected to not embrace the hardest-to-access nationwide parks in Alaska and those in U.S. territories on this collection.

Nationwide Parks: Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec | Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | Might | Jun | Jul

Is October a Good Time to Go to Nationwide Parks?

Sure! It’s a good time to go to Nationwide Parks, particularly for fall colours. We had a tough time narrowing down the checklist, so we included 17.

Plan on visiting greater than two nationwide parks this 12 months? Choose up an America the Stunning annual cross to economize (entrance charges to every park are, on common, $30-35 per automobile). Plus, you might be serving to assist the Parks that all the time want the funding.

17 Finest Nationwide Parks to Go to in September

1. Acadia Nationwide Park, Maine

25 Customer Heart Rd, Bar Harbor, ME 04609, map

Common Temperatures: 55° F / 38° F

Why Go to: Mid-October is the most effective time to go to for leaf-peeping. Though it’s crowded, the colours are beautiful sufficient to make it price it. We caught the final of the autumn foliage in late October.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Scenic Drive, Mountain climbing, Rock Climbing, Biking, Lobster Boat Cruise, Kayaking, Tidepooling

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Cadillac Mountain, Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse, Precipice Path, Thunder Gap, Scenic Park Loop Street
  • Wildlife – Seals, Harbor Porpoises, Moose, Black Bears, Whitetail Deer, Beavers
  • What number of days do you want? 1-3

Professional Tip: If you wish to drive up Cadillac Summit Street, you are actually required to get a ticket. See extra particulars right here Recreation.gov.

See Associated – 15 Breathtaking Issues to Do in Acadia Nationwide Park


2. Arches Nationwide Park, Utah

38.6165892,-109.6220349, map

Common Temperatures: 71° F / 41° F

Why Go to: October is without doubt one of the finest months to go to Arches Nationwide Park. The climate remains to be heat through the day and cools at evening. That makes it good for mountaineering to see the arches up shut.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Scenic Drive, Mountain climbing, Biking, Tenting, Canyoneering, Images

Don’t Miss:

Professional Tip: They’ve a Ranger-Led Fiery Furnace Hike that fills up rapidly. Remember to join early!

See Associated – The Final GUide to Arches Nationwide Park

Delicate Arch at Arches Utah National ParkPin

3. Large Mattress Nationwide Park, Texas

310, Alstate Ave, Large Bend Nationwide Park, TX 79834, map

Common Temperatures: 75° F / 55° F

Why Go to: Large Bend will get heat days and chilly nights in October. Since so many trails supply little to no shade, it’s important to go to when the climate isn’t too sizzling to see.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Scenic Drives, Day Hikes, River Journeys, Stargazing, Backpacking, Sizzling Springs

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Santa Elena Canyon, Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive, Balanced Rock, Langford Sizzling Springs
  • Wildlife – Coyotes, Western Pipistrelle Bat, Black Bear, Mountain Lion, Bobcat, Elk
  • What number of days do you want? 2-4

Professional Tip: The park covers a big space and might take time to get from one place to the subsequent. Give your self loads of journey time. Additionally, remember the fact that some trails require high-clearance autos to get to.

See Associated – 11 Wonderful Issues to Do in Large Bend Nationwide Park

Hot Springs Big Bend National Park + Amazing Things to See in West TexasPin

4. Black Canyon of the Gunnison Nationwide Park, Colorado

10346 CO-347, Montrose, CO 81401, map

Common Temperatures: 68° F / 39° F

Why Go to: October is a superb time to go to the park to discover the viewpoints and trails with out worrying in regards to the warmth. When you’re fortunate, you could even see a light-weight dusting of snow, making it much more magical.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Scenic Drive, Viewpoints, Mountain climbing, Images

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – South Rim Street, Warner Level Nature Path, East Portal Street
  • Wildlife – Coyotes, Elk, Eagles, Mule Deer, Bears
  • What number of days do you want? 1-2

Native Tip: If you wish to discover the park past overlooks and a Customer Heart, you will need to plan forward of time. There aren’t any maintained or marked trails into the canyon. Plus, entry to the river is on the opposite facet of the canyon.

See Associated – 9 Wonderful Issues to Do in Black Canyon of the Gunnison Nationwide Park

9 Amazing Things to Do in Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park // Local AdventurerPin

5. Canyonlands Nationwide Park, Utah

38.459836,-109.8252133, map

Common Temperatures: 70° F / 38° F

Why Go to: The climate is gorgeous in October in Canyonlands Nationwide Park. Pack layers for the chilly mornings and evenings. Through the day, you possibly can take in the solar whereas mountaineering the paths.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Scenic Drive, Mountain climbing, Backpacking, Tenting, Stargazing

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Island within the Sky (Most Accessible), The Needles, The Maze, Horseshoe Canyon, The Rivers
  • Wildlife – Mule Deer, Kangaroo Rats, Mountain Lions, Bighorn Sheep, Black Bear, Desert Cottontails
  • What number of days do you want? 2-4

Professional Tip: You want a four-wheel drive to discover many elements of this park.

See Associated – The Mighty 5 Utah Nationwide Parks Street Journey

6. Capital Reef Nationwide Park, Utah

38.2914642,-111.264238, map

Common Temperatures: 65° F / 41° F

Why Go to: October is without doubt one of the hottest occasions to go to Capital Reef Nationwide Park due to the best mountaineering climate. You usually don’t have to fret about snow or rain.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Tenting, Backpacking, Scenic Drives, Ranger Packages

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Fruita, Cathedral Valley, Sulpher Creek, Petroglyph Panel, Gifford Home, Choose Fruits
  • Wildlife – Bighorn Sheep, Mule Deer, Mountain Lion, Ringtail, Marmots, Grey Fox, Canyon Bat
  • What number of days do you want? 2-4

See Associated – Full Listing of Nationwide Parks by State

Capitol Reef National Park UtahPin

7. Carlsbad Caverns Nationwide Park, New Mexico

727 Carlsbad Cavern Hwy, Carlsbad, NM 88220, map

Common Temperatures: 71° F / 49° F

Why Go to: The Bat Flight Program (late Might by October at 7 pm) is a spotlight that you just shouldn’t miss. In October, the cooler climate makes exploring the floor trails extra nice too,

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Wildlife Viewing, Guided Excursions, Stargazing

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – at Flight Program, Guadalupe Ridge Path, Large Room, and Pure Entrance Trails
  • Wildlife – Vesper Bats, Coyotes, Grey Fox, Package Fox, Pronghorn, Vipers, Bobcat, Black Bears,
  • What number of days do you want? 1-3

Professional Tip: No digital gadgets are allowed (together with cameras and cell telephones) through the Bat Flight Program.

Carlsbad Cavern Natural Entrance + 17 Best National Parks to Visit in SeptemberPin

8. Congaree Nationwide Park, South Carolina

100 Nationwide Park Rd, Hopkins, SC 29061, map

Common Temperatures: 75° F / 52° F

Why Go to: Congaree Nationwide Park’s fall colours peak in direction of the top of October. The cooler temperatures make it a good time to go mountaineering or paddle down the river.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Canoeing, Kayaking, Fishing, Tenting

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Boardwalk Loop Path, Canoe or Kayak, Bluff Path
  • Wildlife – Bobcats, Deer, Feral Pigs, Coyotes, Armadillos, Otters
  • What number of days do you want? 1-2

Professional Tip: When you’re not comfy paddling down a river your self, you possibly can join ranger-led paddles.

See Associated – 11 Distinctive Issues to Do in Congaree Nationwide Park

Looking for the best things to do in Columbia SC? Congaree National Park needs to be on your list! Click through and save this pin to find the ultimate guide to this national park. Find out what you can't miss, which ranger program you need to sign up for, when to visit to see the synchronous fireflies, and more. // Local Adventurer #localadventurer #discoverSC #southcarolina #visittheusa #realcolumbiascPin

9. Cuyahoga Valley Nationwide Park, Ohio

6947 Riverview Rd, Peninsula, OH 44264, map

Common Temperatures: 62° F / 46° F

Why Go to: The autumn leaves in Cuyahoga Valley Nationwide Park often peak in late October, making it the proper autumn getaway.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Biking, Scenic Prepare Journey, Fishing, Paddling

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath Path, Ledges Overlook, Brandywine Falls, Canal Exploration Heart
  • Wildlife – Coyotes, Crimson Foxes, Grey Foxes, Bats, Deer, Mink
  • What number of days do you want? 2-3
cuyahoga valley national park waterfallsPin

10. Nice Smoky Mountain Nationwide Park

2 Everett St, Bryson Metropolis, NC 28713, map

Common Temperatures: 63° F / 36° F

Why Go to: Sugar maple, scarlet oak, sweetgum, purple maple, and hickories explode in colours from mid-October to early November. It attracts leaf-peeping crowds, so be ready for it to be busy. You could have to courageous the crowds, but it surely’s price it.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Tenting, Scenic Drives, Biking, Fall Colours

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Charlies Bunion, Alum Cave Bluffs, Roaring Fork Motor Nature Path, Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Wildlife – Elk, Black Bears, Bobcat, Whitetail Deer, Coyote, Pygmy Shrew
  • What number of days do you want? 2-4

Professional Tip: To keep away from crowds, get out of the automotive and go on longer hikes. You’ll nonetheless see folks, however it is going to be a lot fewer than straightforward to get to spots.

See Associated – 11 Can’t Miss Issues to DO in Pigeon Forge TN

Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg TNPin

11. Isle Royale Nationwide Park, Michigan

800 E Lakeshore Dr, Houghton, MI 49931, map

Common Temperatures: 48° F / 38° F

Why Go to: With a restricted season ending in October, that is your final likelihood to go to this park earlier than ready one other six months. It’s often much less crowded, too, though it by no means will get that busy in comparison with different nationwide parks.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Backpacking, Tenting, Fishing, Kayaking, Scuba Diving

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Ferry Journey, Greenstone Ridge Path, Tour the three Lighthouses
  • Wildlife – Moose, Wolves, Elk, Snowshoe Hares, Foxes, Mink, Beavers
  • What number of days do you want? 1-3
isle royale lighthouse national parkPin

12. New River GOrge Nationwide Park, West Virginia

162 Customer Heart Rd, Lansing, WV 25862, map

Common Temperatures: 63° F / 44° F

Why Go to: As one of many latest Nationwide Parks, it has rapidly earned a spot as among the finest parks for fall foliage, peaking in mid to late October. The cool temps make it good for mountaineering and climbing too.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Tenting, Whitewater Rafting, Mountain climbing, Biking, Climbing, Scenic Drives, Fishing

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – New River Gorge Bridge, Grandview, Sandstone Falls, Nuttallburg
  • Wildlife – Groundhog, Coyotes, Crimson Foxes, Grey Foxes, Black Bears, Bobcats, White-Tailed Deer
  • What number of days do you want? 1-3
new river gorge national park fall foliagePin

13. Petrified Forest Nationwide Park, Arizona

1 Park Rd, Petrified Forest Nationwide Park, AZ 86028, map

Common Temperatures: 73° F / 42° F

Why Go to: Summer season is the busiest and wettest season of the park, however come October, the temperatures are gentle, and all of the rain rewards you with wildflowers blooming.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Scenic Drive, Mountain climbing, Backpacking, Bicycling, Horseback Using

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Blue Mesa Path, Crimson Basin, Rim Path, Painted Desert Overlooks, Newspaper Rock
  • Wildlife – Pronghorn, Coyote, Package Fox, Bobcat Mule Deer, Badger
  • What number of days do you want? 1-2

Professional Tip: Discover the park East to West, and you’ll see every part with out backtracking.

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14. Shenandoah Nationwide Park, Virginia

Skyline Drive Milepost 51, Stanley, VA 22851, map

Common Temperatures: 58° F / 39° F

Why Go to: October is the height season for fall foliage viewing and is the park’s busiest time, with roughly 25% of its yearly guests in a single month. You’ll be able to see the leaves from the automotive and viewpoints or hop on one in all its 500 hundred miles of trails.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Scenic Drives, Fall Foliage, Mountain climbing, Backpacking, Wildlife Viewing, Fishing

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Skyline Drive, Previous Rag Mountain, Large Meadows, The Level Overlook, Dickey Ridge
  • Wildlife – Black Bear, Large Brown Bat, Skunks, White-Tailed Deer
  • What number of days do you want? 2-4
fall foliage shenandoah national park + 17 Stunning PlacesPin

15. Voyageurs Nationwide Park, Minnesota

360 MN-11, Worldwide Falls, MN 56649, map

Common Temperatures: 52° F / 33° F

Why Go to: You’ll be able to catch the tail finish of fall foliage in October with fewer folks, fewer mosquitoes, and funky temperatures. Additionally, don’t miss out on the possibility to catch the Northern Lights at evening.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Stargazing, Guided Excursions, Fowl Watching

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Echo Bay Path, Grassy Bay Cliffs, Ellsworth Rock Gardens, Anderson Bay, Harry Oveson Fish Camp
  • Wildlife – Moose, Grey Wolf, Beaver, Bald Eagle
  • What number of days do you want? 1-3

Professional Tip: Parts of the park can solely be accessed through the water. Verify the Guests Heart for more information.

kabetogama lake voyageurs national parkPin

16. White Sands Nationwide Park, New Mexico

19955 US-70, Alamogordo, NM 88310, map

Common Temperatures: 79° F / 41° F

Why Go to: October is without doubt one of the quieter months at White Sands Nationwide Park. It’s a good time to discover the dunes with nobody in sight or to even camp and gaze on the stars above. You’ll additionally discover some cottonwoods altering colours right now.

Finest For / Prime Actions: Mountain climbing, Bicycling, Backcountry Tenting, Images, Stargazing, Sledding

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Sledding, Dune Life Nature Path, Alkali Flat Path, Playa Path
  • Wildlife – American Badger, Apache Pocket Mouse, Black-Tailed Jackrabbit, Bobcat, Coyote, Package Fox
  • What number of days do you want? 1-3

Professional Tip: Because you’re mountaineering on dunes, you could preserve a watch out for path markers. It will possibly get disorienting in a short time. We obtained misplaced.

See Associated – 5 Unimaginable Issues to Do at White Sands Nationwide Park

Popular White Sands in New MexicoPin

17. Wind Cave Nationwide Park, South Dakota

26611 US-385, Sizzling Springs, SD 57747, map

Common Temperatures: 63° F / 35° F

Why Go to: Though the cave stays the identical temperature year-round, October additionally brings you nice climate for exploring the floor trails. The encompassing grasslands and forested hillsides are stunning and an excellent place to identify wildlife

Finest For / Prime Actions: Excursions, Mountain climbing, Wildlife, Scenic Drives

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Wind Cave Tour, Prairie Vista, Elk Mountain, Bison Flats, Boland Ridge
  • Wildlife – Bison, Prairie Canine, Black Footed Ferret, Elk, Bobcats, Mountain Lions
  • What number of days do you want? 1-3

Professional Tip: Cease by the Customer Heart for more information about cave excursions.

wind cave national park south dakotaPin

Map of the Finest Nationwide Parks to Go to in October

Wish to See Extra NATIONAL Parks to Go to in October?

When you love nationwide parks like us and have accomplished lots of the above, listed below are some extra concepts for Nationwide Parks to go to in October. Whereas October is probably not the highest two very best months out of the 12 months to go to these parks, it’s not a nasty time both.

Suggestions for Visiting the Finest Nationwide Parks in September

  • Discover the parks responsibly utilizing Go away no Hint ideas.
  • Choose up the Nationwide Park Annual Cross when you plan on visiting a number of parks throughout the 12 months. It saves you some huge cash.
  • Wish to see the fall foliage? Local weather change and droughts this 12 months will make timing extra unpredictable. We usually go onto the geotag on Instagram or Tiktok and scroll by all of the current posts to see what it’s wanting like. Take into account that some folks publish older content material, so I like to have a look at the grid or ones that non-influencers are posting. You can even depart a remark and ask after they went.
  • It’s all the time a good suggestion to pack layers wherever you go. Some parks are heat through the day and funky at evening. Take note of the elevation change too! Some parks will likely be heat on the valley flooring and chilly at increased elevations.
  • It’s possible you’ll want a reservation. See nationwide parks that now require reservations right here.
  • All the time verify the park’s website and Guests Heart for essentially the most up-to-date info on closures.
  • Do not forget that wildlife is wild. Be accustomed to the right way to work together with animals and the way a lot area you must have between you and them.
Turret Arch Arches National ParkPin

What to Pack

How you’ll pack relies on which park you go to and the actions you intend, however here’s a common information on gadgets we all the time attempt to pack.

Wish to know what to put on to the airport? Right here’s my very best airport outfit.


Are nationwide parks crowded in October?

Fall is without doubt one of the finest occasions to go to Nationwide Parks. October often means there are fewer crowds (until you go to a park recognized for its fall foliage). Lodging are often cheaper too.

What time of 12 months is finest to go to nationwide parks?

Late September and October are the most effective occasions to go to Nationwide Parks. You get heat, however not chilly climate, and fewer crowds as a result of youngsters are again at school, which additionally means cheaper lodging.

What nationwide park is finest to go to in October?

It relies on what you’re on the lookout for! When you’re visiting for fall foliage, Nice Smoky, Shenandoah, and Crimson River Gorge are nice. To keep away from crowds, take a look at White Sands, Isle Royale, or Voyageurs.

What’s the finest nationwide park to go to within the fall?

All of the parks on this checklist are good for one purpose or one other, however our vote goes to Acadia Nationwide Park for fall foliage plus the coast.

What’s Zion like in October?

Highs of 82 levels Fahrenheit and lows of 43 levels make it nonetheless heat when there isn’t shade. Keep away from uncovered hikes in the midst of the day, and use the nice and cozy temps to discover the river and canyon.

How is Yellowstone in October?

Yellowstone in October is a superb time to see wildlife nonetheless out and about. A lot of them are making ready for winter now. The climate is cool and crisp, and fall colours are additionally out.

What’s Yosemite like in October?

The climate within the valley remains to be heat through the day with highs of 71, but it surely drops right down to the low 40s at evening. When you head as much as Tuolumne Meadows, the temperatures drop by 20 levels.

Is Glacier park open in October?

Roads begin closing in October, so parts of the park is probably not accessible relying on the climate.

How sizzling is Grand Canyon in October?

On the South Rim, the highs are often round 65 levels Fahrenheit, and the lows are round 33.

Recap of the 17 Finest Nationwide Parks to Go to in October

September is a superb time to discover the Nationwide Parks. You get to make the most of good climate, and most colleges have began again up, so it is going to be a bit much less crowded than within the peak of summer season. Right here is the checklist of parks we suggest visiting.

  1. Acadia Nationwide Park
  2. Arches Nationwide Park
  3. Large Bend Nationwide Park
  4. Black Canyon of the Gunnison Nationwide Park
  5. Canyonlands Nationwide Park
  6. Capitol Reef Nationwide Park
  7. Carlsbad Caverns Nationwide Park
  8. Congaree Nationwide Park
  9. Cuyahoga Valley Nationwide Park
  10. Nice Smoky Mountains Nationwide Park
  11. Isle Royale Nationwide Park
  12. New River Gorge Nationwide Park
  13. Petrified Forest Nationwide Park
  14. Shenandoah Nationwide Park
  15. Voyageurs Nationwide Park
  16. White Sands Nationwide Park
  17. Wind Cave Nationwide Park

Are you able to consider others that belong on this checklist of finest nationwide parks to go to in October? Which of them are we lacking?




“Discovery consists not of in search of new lands however in seeing with new eyes” – M. Proust

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