I wanted to take a little time to talk about some of the things we have experienced either as campers or working in campgrounds. Campers have an etiquette that is often not spoken or written. So here are the top three things I have seen campers forget while out enjoying nature.
Setting up and packing up can be a noisy process. Jacks make noise. Taking out chairs, grills and other campsite necessities make noise. When you arrive after quiet hours have started you should be mindful of how much noise you are making since there are folks who may be trying to sleep. Set up as quietly as possible and with as few people moving around outside as possible. If there is something that can wait until the morning to do (even if you are only staying one night), let it wait. Also, if you are leaving early be mindful of the noise in packing up.
Be respectful of quiet hour times while camping. We all want to enjoy our time outside, however, sound carries in nature. Everyone can hear you, your music and kids playing. Enjoy in lower voices and tones.
Our furry friends are our companions and some love traveling with us. There are animals that enjoy the outdoors as much or more than many of us do. It is up to us to keep our pets safe while keeping the safety of others in mind. It is imperative that you follow the posted signage for your pets. If the rule is on leash with no longer than a 6 foot tether, please follow it. We have witnessed dogs off leash while we worked at Yellowstone. We reminded folks that your dog is a food source in the park. That leash is for its protection. There are many diseases that pets can pick up from wild animal feces, urine, fleas and ticks. If they are on a leash you can keep them from getting into something harmful. Picking up after your pet keeps other pets, humans and wild animals from transferring bacteria and diseases. Many campgrounds have dog run areas where you can play and let your pet off leash. The campground may also provide poop disposal bags and cans just for animal waste.
It is your home for as long as you are in the campground. Just as with any other home you do not want strangers walking through your area. Be aware of other campers’ space. Help your children understand that they should not walk through others space. It may mean taking the long way around just to take trash but be as respectful of the other campers as you want them to be to you. You also want to leave your site clean for the next camper. Most campgrounds don’t have the staff to pick up your trash. All trash should be put in the appropriate receptacles. If you are camping on BLM (Bureau of Land Management), you will need to take all your trash with you. If your brought it in, you must take it out.
Many of our readers may think these are common sense items but many of our fellow campers are new and may not know these things or why they are important. I hope this helps someone have the best camping experience they can have.