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Top Outdoor Activities for Van Enthusiasts this October


If you’ve been thinking about hitting the road this season, October is a great time to do so. During this month, you’ll have cooler temperatures instead of heat and humidity, along with colorful leaves to admire and fewer bugs to deal with. What kinds of outdoor activities can you enjoy this month while traveling around in your van? The following are some of the top activities to do outdoors during October.

Mountain Biking

Mountain biking offers an exciting way to explore your natural surroundings when you visit state parks, national forests, or other areas. During fall, biking trails are typically less muddy compared to other seasons, offering a less slippery surface for your wheels. October is also a good time for mountain biking, since the trails tend to have fewer people on them. This makes it easier to ride without having to navigate your way through crowded trail areas. While biking, you can take in the views of trees in all of their fall splendor. With the weather being cooler and less humid, you can also plan on biking for longer periods of time without getting uncomfortable.


Taking hikes through forests, mountains, and other outdoor areas is a pleasant experience in October. You can take your time on these hikes in cooler weather while snapping photos of fall foliage from time to time. Just make sure you check weather conditions before heading out, so you won’t get caught in any October storms. Since the sun sets earlier this time of year, plan on starting your hikes earlier in the day rather than later in the afternoon, especially if you’re planning to do longer hikes. Wear bright colors on the trails, since hunting season starts in October in some areas.

Cooking Outdoors

October is an ideal time to get your outdoor kitchen or grill set up while traveling around in your van. Instead of staying cooped up inside your vehicle, you can prepare meals in the crisp, fresh outdoor air. Fire up the grill, and cook some hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken, or steak for dinner. Get a campfire going in areas that allow them, and have some toasted marshmallows or s’mores for a tasty treat. Have some apple cider or a cup of cocoa with your meals or treats, especially on chilly October evenings.

Visiting Farms and Farmers’ Markets

Apples, pumpkins, and other produce are ready to harvest in October, making this a great time to visit farms. Make room in your van to load up on freshly picked apples or pumpkins from the pumpkin patch. At some farms, you can go for a hay ride, feed farm animals, wander through a corn maze, and do other fun activities. October is also a good time to visit farmers’ markets. You can stock up on locally grown produce, home-baked goods, dairy products, and more when you visit these roadside markets. You can then make apple pies and other seasonal recipes and carve or paint pumpkins for seasonal decor in your van.

Checking Out Halloween Festivities and Outdoor Attractions

With Halloween being on October 31st, you should find plenty of attractions to visit, such as haunted forests or haunted trails. If you like a good scare, look for these kinds of local attractions in your travels. You might also find other types of Halloween or fall festivities, such as outdoor festivals and fairs, haunted walking tours in towns and cities, pumpkin carving contests, costume contests, and more. Listen to Halloween songs while driving around in your van from place to place, and put up some spooky decorations. If you’re traveling with kids, check for places to go trick or treating.

Bass Fishing

During summer, bass tend to hide in deeper waters, which makes them harder to catch. When cooler weather and water temperatures arrive, these fish head for shallower water. This makes October a perfect time to go bass fishing if you usually have trouble catching them. You’re most likely to find these fish in shallow waters where smaller fish that they feed on tend to be. Whether you go fishing for bass in rivers, lakes, or streams, stay near the shore rather than heading out to deeper areas in a boat. Being able to fish from the shore can be much more convenient when you’re traveling around in your van, since you don’t have to worry about bringing a boat with you or renting one.

Collecting Fall Leaves for Decorations

Taking photos of fall foliage isn’t the only way to appreciate nature’s beauty. While you’re out hiking in the mountains or forests, gather up fallen leaves. When you get back to your van, you can turn these leaves into seasonal decorations. Make strings of fallen leaves to hang up as decor, or make a shadow box decoration with leaves inside it to put on a wall or flat surface in your van. Keep in mind that October is peak time for fall foliage in many areas. The farther north you go, the earlier in October this peak time is, so plan accordingly.

Sitting Around the Campfire

Cool October evenings can make you a bit chilly, but a campfire can warm you right up. When you get a campfire going, you and your traveling companions can gather around it and tell scary stories for Halloween or share other stories. While you’re out there, roast some marshmallows and have a mug of hot cocoa to keep you even warmer. Before starting a campfire, check local regulations and advisories. Campfires might not be allowed in areas with drought conditions or wildfire concerns. If you do have a campfire, don’t leave it unattended, and make sure it’s out completely before going to bed.


Dark evenings and clear skies offer ideal conditions for doing some stargazing during your October travels. Drive your van to a dark, open area that provides good views of the sky, so you can look for constellations, the moon, and any planets that are visible, such as Jupiter or Venus. Some planets are more visible in the evening or night sky during October rather than in the early morning hours. Bring a telescope with you for an even better view of stars, planets, and the moon. Check night sky maps ahead of time, so you’ll know when the best viewing time is and what you’re likely to see.


Summer water activities, such as swimming, aren’t an option in most areas in October. However, you can still enjoy the water during this time of year. Rent a kayak or boat to explore lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water in national parks and forests, state parks, and other outdoor areas. If you have a kayak or boat that you can bring with you on your van trips, you won’t have to worry about finding a rental place. Just make sure you dress warmly and go earlier in the day, since it gets dark out earlier in October.

Being able to travel around in a van gives you an ideal way to see different places and enjoy the great outdoors. If you’re looking for the perfect van for your travels, visit RecVan to browse through our new and used vans.