17 Campground Habits That Annoy Other Campers

3 shares Most people visit campgrounds to spend time in nature and create memories with loved ones. I don’t think anyone visits a campground to…

Most people visit campgrounds to spend time in nature and create memories with loved ones. I don’t think anyone visits a campground to annoy other campers; however, certain behaviors may annoy your neighbors. The good news is that simply being mindful of your campground etiquette and considering how your actions might impact others creates a positive experience for everyone in the campground!

Here are some common campground habits that often annoy other campers:

1. Creating Loud Noises

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Whether you’re blasting music, talking loudly, or running a generator, these create loud sounds that can disturb your campmates. It’s even more irritating if you’re causing a ruckus late at night or early in the morning during quiet hours. 

You can still play music and talk at a respectful volume (and run your generator intermittently), but pay attention to the time of day, the noise level, and how long you’re doing these things to help maintain the peace of the campground.

2. Failing to Clean Up

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No one wants to walk into a campsite full of your trash. Leaving your trash at your campsite is unsanitary for other campers, an eyesore for your neighbors, and hurts the environment. Pack out whatever you pack in! 

And if other campers left trash before you, leave the campsite better than you found it and pack out their trash, too. Just avoid emptying a trash bin full of cans and bottles late at night or early in the morning, as this creates an unwanted ruckus that wakes your neighbors. 

3. Taking Up Excessive Space

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Stick to the perimeters of your campsite. For example, if you bring games like ladder golf or bags, set them up and play them within your designated site. It’s unfair to other campers when you spread your gear across multiple sites (unless you paid for them) and occupy more space than necessary. 

4. Having Poor Pet Etiquette

A man and a woman petting a golden retriever in green grass.
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Not all people love dogs running into their campsites. Even if your dog is friendly, keep them on a leash and make sure you’re attending to them. Bring bags to clean up after them and toss their waste with your garbage. 

Train your dog ahead of time to prevent excessive barking or aggressive behavior. If your dog is barking for attention, don’t ignore them–do what you can to take care of it.

5. Shining Bright Lights ALL Night

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Lights on ALL night can be annoying for other campers. While it’s okay to use a lantern or headlamp in moderation, don’t leave bright lights on all night. These lights can blind other campers and interfere with stargazing. 

If possible, use red lights, which are less harsh on the eyes. However, even if the lights are red, you should avoid leaving them turned on all night long.

6. Creating Excessive Campfire Smoke

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While having campfires is a fun part of camping, overly large or smoky fires may disturb your neighbors. Monitor your fire and prevent smoke from blowing into other tents or RVs. This includes avoiding throwing trash into the fire (which is also smelly and toxic), refraining from building a bonfire and maintaining control at all times. 

7. Intruding on Space

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Respect other campers and the spaces they occupy. Don’t walk through other campsites or budge in line at shared facilities like bathrooms. Try to avoid monopolizing shared spaces like cooking areas and showers. And, of course, don’t leave messes for others to clean up.

8. Leaving Children Unattended

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If you bring children with you, monitor their whereabouts and noise levels. If your children run wild and free around the campground, this may disrupt other campers. Children playing unsupervised is also a safety concern if they’re on the road or entering strangers’ campsites.

9. Ignoring Wildlife Guidelines

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Most campgrounds have rules around interacting with wildlife. These guidelines include storing your food properly and not feeding wild animals. By ignoring these regulations, you’re creating safety hazards for other campers and hurting the ecosystem.

10. Damaging the Environment

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Some campers lack respect for nature. They may carve into trees, break branches off live trees for firewood, or disrupt the vegetation by walking or setting up camp in fragile places. These habits irreparably damage the ecosystem and ultimately prevent future visitors from enjoying the natural beauty of the campground.

Camping shouldn’t alter the surrounding environment in any way.

11. Speeding

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Most campgrounds have posted speed limits (usually 10 miles per hour or less) since people are often walking along the road and children are playing. Pay close attention to your speed and slow down so no one gets hurt.

12. Taking Items from Other Campsites

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Sometimes your camp neighbors might leave the campground to go out and adventure. They might leave behind their firewood, chairs, or other camping gear so it’s ready to go when they get back. 

While it should go without saying, these items are NOT free for the taking.

Just because someone leaves something behind at their campsite doesn’t mean they don’t plan to return for it!

13. Throwing Wild Parties at Night

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While some people stay at campgrounds to relax, disconnect, and spend time in nature, others decide to use it as a time to throw a rager with their friends. Don’t be that person who starts a party at 11 pm that doesn’t end until sunrise–it keeps your neighbors from being able to sleep and disrupts the peace.

14. Smoking and Doing Illegal Drugs

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Unless it’s a designated smoking area, avoid smoking cigarettes in your campsite. The scent easily drifts into your neighbors’ campsites, and no one deserves to breathe in the harmful toxins from cigarettes through second-hand smoke.

If you’re hoping to smoke pot in the campground, keep in mind that all cannabis products are illegal in federal parks. Even state parks can be off-limits in states where cannabis is legalized (i.e., Oregon), so do your research ahead of time. 

15. Doing a Major Auto Repair

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A campground is not intended for doing mechanical work on your RV, van, or other vehicle. If you need to do a major auto repair, it’s best to do this in a private area where you can spread out without disrupting other campers. No one wants to look over into your campsite and see a junkyard for several days. 

16. Lying to the Campground About Pets

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Be honest about how many pets you bring with you to the campground. If the campground only permits one pet, but you have multiple cats and/or dogs, then you need to find a different place to stay. It’s unfair to your campground neighbors when you lie about how many pets you have, especially if your pets are loud or poorly behaved.

17. Using a Leaf Blower

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Some campers bring a leaf blower to the campsite to keep it tidy and remove unwanted debris like leaves and dirt. Although there’s nothing wrong with wanting to keep your campsite clean, leaf blowers are loud, and you might unintentionally blow debris into neighboring sites.

10 Campers Share Their Scariest Experiences

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For the most part, camping is an exhilarating experience filled with fun, adventure, and memorable moments. However, there are occasions when camping can be scary. Whether you’re an experienced camper or a first-time van lifer, the woods and wilderness can be creepy.

Here are some scary experiences that will have you thinking twice:

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