Camping Etiquette Tips

Being a good neighbor is a big part of staying at campgrounds. You need to be considerate of other campers, and you have the right to consideration from others. Many campgrounds have rules posted around camp. It is best to observe them if they are posted. Here are some tips on being a good neighbor, even when there are no officially posted rules.

  • If you carry it in, please carry it out-this will eliminate litter.
  • Camp in a designated campsite within the campground, unless you have obtained a special backcountry camping permit.
  • Protect water sources from contamination.
  • Use biodegradable soap, or try hot water soapless dishwashing, bathing and clothes washing.
  • When using soap (even biodegradable) and toothpaste, dispose of the wastewater at least 100 feet away from natural water sources and well or faucet water sources.
  • Be a good neighbor – control your noise and your pets.
  • Be respectful of the natural environment — keep the trees and shrubs alive and growing.
  • When hiking, stay on designated trails. This keeps damage to vegetation and erosion in one place.
  • Always keep your dog on a leash no longer that 6 feet, and away from public swimming areas.
  • Barking and not cleaning up after pets leads to many complaints from other campers. Campers are responsible for their pets at all times. Do not leave them unattended. Pets should be on a leash 6 feet or less, in length.
  • Avoid borrowing tables from other sites. This creates problems for campground managers and other campers, when they must retrieve the table for the site from which it was taken.
  • Quiet Hours are typically from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m.. Voices carry far at night. Moderation is essential.
  • Nails and wires should not be used on trees because they can cause serious damage to trees. It is illegal in some states to put nails into a tree, unless you have permission from the landowner. Burn damage will permanently scar or kill a tree.
  • Before leaving the campsite, clean out your fire pit for the next camper.
  • Clean your campsite before leaving. Make it as clean as you would want it if you were arriving that day. The next camper will appreciate it.

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