Mild July Temperatures Bring Out More Campers Than Usual
Devil’s Den State Park doesn’t normally see many people camping this time of year, but a park ranger tells 5NEWS their campgrounds have been at full capacity since Friday afternoon.
“Typically after the 4th of July we do slow down,” Park Ranger Lucas Caldwell said.
Camper Tim Stuthard of Fayetteville said he’d normally never be seen camping in mid-July.
“It was a great opportunity to come down on a short trip and take advantage of the cool weather,” he said.
As far as campsites are concerned, Stuthard thinks his family got the last spot. They arrived Friday afternoon.
“We’re just planning on relaxing and having a good time,” he said.
Toby Sissons traveled to Northwest Arkansas from Tulsa on Thursday.
“I came here as a kid and hadn’t been since,” he said. “My friend and I came last weekend and we checked out some sites and just wanted to come out this weekend, actually spent Thursday night and Friday night and then tonight also.”
Park officials said overall July capacity at the park is usually low. In July 2011 and 2012 they saw 28-percent capacity. Last July and this month so far capacity is at 36-percent. They expect the numbers to be closer to 40-percent after the weekend wraps up.
“Although the weather is supposed to start warming back up, I think you know we’ll still see our occupancy rating higher as long as the weather stays nice,” Park Ranger Caldwell said.
Meteorologist Shelby Hays said Fayetteville broke a record low temperature of 53 degrees at 6 a.m. Saturday (July 19). On Friday (July 18) it was only 71 degrees for a high in Fayetteville, which is the coolest high-temperature on record for that date.