Camping Etiquette

Camping etiquette is really divided into two separate parts: how you treat other campers in the area, and how you treat the campground. 

Other Campers

Camping EtiquetteYou may find yourself in a campground where there are other people camping that you need to be considerate of. In cases like that, here are some things for you to think about:

  • Be aware of your noise level. Many people camp to get out of the noise and busyness of the city life. Do your best to provide that kind of atmosphere. 
  • If the campground has shared facilities (restrooms, water, etc.) be considerate. Thinking of others always pays off in the long run. You may just find some new friends or others that you have something in common with. 
  • Reserve your camping space early. There are many campgrounds that require a reservation and it could put you (or others going with you) in a pinch for a last minute reservation. 
  • If the campground does not do reservations and is a first come, first serve basis, then get there early to get your spot. I have seen some of these no reservation grounds fill up fast and there is not enough room for everyone. This can be a quick way to kill a camping trip you were planning. 
  • Camping etiquette really boils down to treating the other campers how you would like them to treat you. When you act this way, it is really hard to go wrong. 
  • If you bring pets, keep them on a leash so that they will not be a nuisance to other campers. 
  • Avoid cutting through another person's campsite just to get somewhere. You wouldn't want them cutting through your campsite.

The Campground

Camping EtiquetteI remember in scouts when I was young that they taught how to leave the campground as if no one had been there and to care for the land. I think that is a wise concept to keep in mind as we discuss camping etiquette.

  • No one likes someone that leaves their trash all over the place. Burying your trash does not count as being respectful. Bring garbage bags and dispose of them at home if necessary. 
  • Control your fire and keep the campfire away from trees, tents, or anything else that is flammable. A forest fire can ruin a great camping trip in a hurry!
  • Take time to enjoy the area. A good part of the enjoyment of camping is to enjoy the scenery. Go on a hike. Take plenty of pictures. There is a beautiful inner peace that comes from appreciating the beauty of the world. 
  • Use bathroom facilities where possible. If none are available, consider bags or whatever else you can do to leave no trace. 
  • If you are planning to go back country camping where there is not a campsite, obtain the necessary permits. 
  • Clean out the fire pit when you leave. It keeps the campsite neat and makes it ready for the next camper. 
  • Avoid feeding the wildlife. What you feed them could make them sick or they could become more aggressive towards you. 
  • Some campgrounds do not allow motor vehicles like ATVs or motorcycles. Check the rules before you get there. 
You don't like to camp with someone else's garbage. The person after you does not want to camp with your garbage. These simple camping etiquette tips will help you make the most of the experience without offending others.

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