Camping safety tips as people head into the wild Labor Day weekend

Published: Sep. 3, 2022 at 5:13 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - Outdoor activities are popular during summer holiday weekends.

Camping is in-tents, or at least that is what officials at Explore Park say. Since its Blue Ridge Campground rebranding in May, they have seen more than 175 families.

“We’ve had a busy season. We’ve seen a lot of people coming out on the weekends,” said Recreation Specialist Emma Layman.

Whether it’s a small family or a big friend group, the site has different options available.

“We have some small and medium primitive camp sites. We have some large group sites and we also have small raised platform sites along the river. It’s a true primitive experience where we have some tent pads some charcoal grills and picnic tables,” said Roanoke County Parks Recreation and Tourism Marketing Director Alex North.

Layman Outdoor activities are popular during summer holiday weekends.

Layman recommends you over-pack if necessary to make sure you have all the things you need.

“Bring bug spray and plenty of it. Something to strike a match with or a lighter,” explained Layman. “You would want a tent to sleep in and anything you might need over the day. We don’t have any access to water at the campsite.”

Explore Park has a shuttle to help bring in your stuff and take it out. Layman says to double-check what happens around the campfire, and stays at the campfire.

“Just make sure you’re being careful with your fire when you leave your campsite that it’s down to white ash,” added Layman.

They ask all campers to keep dogs on leashes and not feed any of the wildlife in the area.

“You know this is their home so just make sure that you’re staying here as a guest and not interacting with any of the wildlife,” said Layman.

During the day staff monitors the sites and at night there is an emergency camp line available. You can make a reservation online.