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Camping Etiquette Tips

9572 Views 17 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  edwinjd
I thought I would post this for the new campers out there. Its one of those soap box things I guess :) after some of the things I have seen at campgrounds. I have actually seen (more than once) people emptying their black water tanks on the ground at the campsite :shocked: Please dont do this!

Here are some other things I try to abide by, and wish that all others would as well

- Don't walk across someone elses campsite - go around it.
- Try to control your noise and your pets. Keep your dogs on a leash, most campgrounds I know of require this anyway. And please, clean up after they do their business. Nothing worse than a campsite full of, well you know :)
- When you getting ready to leave, clean up your firepit for the next campers coming in. Seems like everytime I get a site, its full of trash and cans, stuff that doesnt even burn.
- All parks have a speed limit, abide by it. So many times I see people whizzing through the campgound and 25mph. There is usually kids playing, people riding bikes, etc.. This can be very dangerous.

Thats all I can think of for now :thumbup1:
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I'm glad you wrote this. I agree. Whenever we go camping, we make sure we leave it in better shape than when we arrived. With a young one crawling around last summer, I found a lot of chocking hazards that I had to either pick up or pull out of his mouth. Beer bottle caps seem to be the one thing there is plenty of. Use the garbage can. One site we found at least 50 fish hooks on the ground. I guess at one point someone dropped their tackle box. Don't assume that the park will clean up your mess, clean up after yourself so that the next family that gets your site is safe and happy.
I started a post like this last night and then I got side tracked and forgot to come back and finish. So I'll just add a few more tips here to keep the list going.

1. Do not let your children play in the laundry rooms and rest areas. It is so annoying to go in to use the facilities and there is water all over the floor from kids hanging out in there.

2. Do not borrow things from other campers unless they offer it to you. We have come back to our camp and found complete strangers using our lawn mower. And while we would probably have let them use it if they had asked, it is not right to assume that any camper's belongings are free game.

3. Make sure you put out your fire properly at night before going to bed. Camp fires are fun but can be very dangerous if not completely extinguished.
These etiquette tips are so important for everyone to know and do. Cleaning up behind yourself, go around the campsite, and dump the trash properly. Some of these you do with your neighbors at home. For some reason some people use camping like a party time with no rules. Children are around and you don't want them hit.
I think those are all really great tips! Thanks!

Well said mailfire, I have experienced most, if not all, of those things you mentioned. These 2 are especially annoying to me, and happens about every camping trip. Just makes you wonder where some of these people are from, and why they have no sense?

- When you getting ready to leave, clean up your firepit for the next campers coming in. Seems like everytime I get a site, its full of trash and cans, stuff that doesnt even burn.
- All parks have a speed limit, abide by it. So many times I see people whizzing through the campgound and 25mph. There is usually kids playing, people riding bikes, etc.. This can be very dangerous.
I did notice a party in the woods near the campers. These people had loads and loads of trash all over the place. The place where they grilled food, they left it. Another thing I noticed was the very large number of people. If it was me, I'd keep it small. Because it's usually better and easier to control.
Thanks for the tips . These tips are really useful specially for the new campers . Keep sharing such informative posts .
It good to read the information because you can always make sure you don't do it. I don't want to intentionally take advantage of someone else. I would respect their space - no matter the size. I do this with my neighbor. I have 5 daughters, and she has never had my children in her yard. I've been here for 5 years. It's never happened.
One of my pet peeves is speeding. We almost always take a grand kid or two with us and there seems to always be a jerk that thinks he/she is running the Indy 500. I think this is one reason we like state parks or parks run by the Army Corp of Engineers. If you have a problem, you can usually find a ranger close by. Write down the license number and you can take it to the bank that they will handle the speeder. We always feel safe when camping at state/federal parks. The only time I have had an issue at a campground has been as a privately owned park. Don't get me wrong. We have had some great times at privately owned parks also. If you get a chance, take a look at the Campgrounds, Resorts and Attractions forum

Speeding is a big problem we all face on a daily basis. On a campground it can be very serious. You have children running on the park grounds. Most of the time they can get in front of a car. Even with a responsible adult this can happen. The speeding cars and trucks have to be stopped. If they have police to take care of it, then you can be more secure.
Here is the anti-etiquette advice from

While it's true that with each camping trip we learn something new, we've also found that we get the opportunity to relearn something old, such as what it is like to live next door to the Simpsons for a few days.

Instead of the ingredients for s'mores, this family has brought a small liquor store. They have a boom box and a large, untrained dog named something like "Thunder-turd." There is an axe and a whittling knife for each family member, all stuck into a tree for safekeeping. There are two layers of rip-stop nylon between you and them.

During the years, I have philosophically concluded that every such campground should have such a group, if for no other reason than to make everything else look good. And the truth is, being a truly obnoxious camper is a delicate art, relying on careful planning and orchestration. The rules are as follows:

1. Make your entrance to the campground fashionably late, preferably after10:00 pm., when there is no available light and everyone else is asleep.

2. Drive around the entire campground with your brights on so you can inspect each potential campsite fully, and so campers can make shadow inside puppets inside their tent if they want. Feel free to idle your engine at high RPM for long periods while you and your family carefully weigh the merits of each site, including those which are already taken.

3. If you have a boat, camper, motor home or other vehicle that blocks your rear view, always back into your parking space. Again, take your time, preferably having someone in your party stand behind the vehicle, shouting directions at the driver. Keep at it until you get it exactly right, grinding your reverse gear, revving your engine and spinning your tires in the gravel as needed.

4. If things take longer than you planned, which they probably will, swear a lot. This is, after all, the country. Do it loudly, leaning out your open window and with all the gusto you can muster. And don't forget the kids. It will ease the tension for everyone if you get them to cry.

5. Pump and pump that lantern for all your worth (skip the directions, you can't see them anyway), then throw in a lit match and enjoy the majesty of your very own atomic blast. Keep the valve completely open, so your campsite will serve as a beacon for other campers who may be lost, dis-oriented or under the impression they were sleeping comfortably.

6. Pack a tent that uses metal poles. Plastic poles just don't clang loudly enough when you throw the sack of them on the ground, trip over them and kick them out of the way.

7. Be sure someone in your party is either: a) drunk and obnoxious; b) ill with bronchitis, emphysema or some other lung affliction that produces a loud hacking cough; c) tired and under the age of four, or d) all of the above.

8. Hours later, when you have set up and fully decorated your campsite with hummingbird feeders, lawn chairs, Japanese lanterns and your newly made walking sticks, zip and unzip all the sleeping bags and tent vigorously four or five times each to ensure proper functioning for the night.

9. Have a radio playing - a simple boom box or car radio will do. If the signal is weak, and there is a lot of crackle, you can always turn up the volume.

And last but not least...

10. Plan to have your entire party sleep late. There is always a family somewhere nearby with small children who rise and begin their day at the crack of dawn. They'd like to eat their granola bars and drop by to play trampoline on your tent. While their parents sip espresso and watch.

There's more you can do, such as:

Go to sleep real late so you will have an excuse to sleep in while your kids go to neighboring sites to drool over other peoples breakfast.

Do your part to keep the forest tidy. Kick down and drag to your site any tree you can. Don't bother to cut it, just let it hang from the fireplace and feed it in as it burns.

Let your kids peel all the bark they can from the white birches. After all you paid for your site, you're entitled to do as you wish.

When you're breaking camp don't bother to get your tarp ropes down, Just hack them off at eye level. After all someone else might want to use them.

Don't bother to dispose of your bottle caps and cigarette butts. Folks are looking forward to living in your dirty ashtray, and the kids will love stepping on those bottle caps.

Get all the heavilly painted firewood you can. Old kitchen cabinets work great. Your neighbors will enjoy the lead, heavy metals and general crud all over their gear.

Travel light when you go to the shower. If the showers are metered you can always hit someone up for a quarter. Better yet try the sincere approach, ask folks to change a $20.

This goes beyond camping but what the heck. Don't forget the camcorder and make sure you get plenty of footage of things like trees and fences. Don't be bashfull about holding everyone up endlessly while you shoot your family documentary.
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You may have forgotten one..........always be sure you are close and upwind from your nearest neighbor before you lite that smug fire to burn the painted wood you brought.
Why, Why, Why, is it?

I'm a loner and usually camp by myself in the desert. However, on a couple occasions I have shared a campground with other campers and we all shared the same food.
Why is it there's always some pilgrim that figures camping isn't camping unless you have beans for dinner? Now then, without getting to graphic, let me use the letter G, you know what for! I've always considered my G to be... well... not very offensive, in fact it's not bad at all! But everyone eles's G is like, yikes... who died in you man! So the moral of this incident is to always pitch your tent downwind from your fellow campers and having some ear plugs isn't a bad idea unless you want to listen to Hawaiian music all night!

On another camping trip with a few fellow campers I had one nightmare of a dream. I had a dream that I ate a giant white marshmallow. When I woke up in the morning, my pillow was missing!:smack-head:

What this world needs is a little more Country Bluegrass.
Ricky Skaggs and the Chieftains.
YouTube - ‪ricky skaggs and the chieftains at home of grand ole opry‬‏
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Thanks for this! As a new camper I never really ever thought about the proper etiquette but luckily I came across this while doing a search!
Well, this is basically my bit on etiquette.

1. Arrive as early as possible on your first day. You are paying for it, might as well get there as soon as possible.
2. I won't go into all the details about setting up the camp and gear. Mainly don't be a dork about it. If you don't know how your equipment goes together, or operates, do dry run at home.

3. Try not to be loud, especially during "quiet time". When I camp, sometimes I like to lie in the hammock in the middle of the afternoon, listening to nature, not listening to you in the next camp over, playing "NAUGHTY BY NATURE" on a boom box. Teach your screaming kids how to shut up, or ask for a space FAR away from other campers, or next to other annoying people. Same goes for pets.
4. When it's time to pack up, just do it efficiently, and then when all your stuff is safely stowed away, police the area and pick up all evidence of human presence, yours or stuff that was left there before by previous dorks. To make it fun, play CSI:Camping and pretend you are looking for evidence on a crime scene. Put all the evidence in the big hefty bag and take it with you.
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Try to control your noise and your pets.
Don't forget the children. Personally, I have no qualms against kids camping. I think it's awesome that even today, lots of parents are bringing their kids camping in the hopes that they learn to appreciate more than just computers and those kinds of stuff. But that doesn't mean that they should be allowed to roam freely, squealing and shouting.

Once, we noticed one group with all the grownups were huddled by the barbecue grill while the kids kept on running through our campsite and others, screaming at each other and all. It was crazy! My mom and I had enough and approached the group to tell them to worry more about their kids than the meat.
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