Cutting through occupied campsites

Jan 31, 2009
Kalamazoo, MI
Is there a universal hand gesture for people that cut through my campsite?

Ok, my question is a little 'tongue in cheek'. We are renting a site for the whole summer that is right next to a clearly marked walkway, and yet every weekend someone cuts through my campsite. All the sites and the walkway are divided by old telephone poles, so there's really no ambiguity here. This weekend, I have just arrived to my site and I'm not in my camper but 10 minutes as I watch the camper behind me wash her dishes off the back of her TT and turn and pitch her dirty dishwater all over my site. Then, I am literally sitting next to my firepit, and a group of people walk within about 4 feet of me right down the middle of my site to get to the 'dishwater camper'. Two weekends ago, it was a large church group that insisted that I was a 'spaz' and had no right to ask them (kids and ADULTS) not to walk through my site because the mother was under a great deal of stress from the recent suicide of her son and the foster kids came from difficult backgrounds and couldn't be disciplined the way 'normal' kids could and therefore, the kids couldn't be taught not to walk through sites ("um, wow, where do I even begin with this kind of logic?").

I'm not a nazi about little kids on my site. But older kids and ADULTS should know better. When my kids were small (and forgetful), I would take them by the hand and lead them to where they were allowed to enter and exit our site.

The camp staff is not afraid to speak with the offenders, but it doesn't help and I get tired of being the 'bad guy'. I'm ordering Biohazard Zombie Warning tape to put on the back perimeter of my site. Hopefully people will get the hint.

Sorry, just had to vent.



Active Member
Feb 28, 2013
I feel your pain. This makes me crazy!!!!!!!!! Why people feel the "right" to walk thru your campsite. These are the same people who toss the trash all over and mess up the bath houses.


Active Member
Feb 21, 2011
Bummer. That's why I always use Google maps and (and any other resource I can find) to look at campsites before I book. I hate being next to the bath house or main pedestrian thoroughfares. Too much traffic and noise.

I've taught our boys to stay out of occupied sites...if there's a tent or signs that the site is being used they're not allowed to just traipse through. It would be pretty annoying to me to have people walking through our site all day.


Just because you CAN doesn't mean you SHOULD
Jun 8, 2012
I had a similar situation last week. I had a great week of camping, then the day before I leave a family moves in across the street. The kids immediately start running thru the middle of my campsite, almost tripping into my firepit several times, and harassing the dogs on their way to the playground. After a couple hours of this I finally went and had a talk with dad. He apologized and said he had already talked to them about it but would do so again. Later, GF tells me that although dad clearly got it, Mom seemed not so happy with what he appeared to be telling her about our chat. The next day a bunch of family and friends show up on their site (about 5 carloads) and the ADULTS start walking thru the middle of my site while I'm sitting there, almost tripping into the pit again. To dads credit, I did notice him mention something to them shortly after and they started making a very wide arc as I had asked him to make sure the kids did to avoid the dogs and fire. But the worst part is, his wife even did it once before he talked to them all. She clearly was part of the kids problem. Had I not left that day the camp staff would have definitely been consulted, and OH SP rangers don't take complaints lightly.


Active Member
May 30, 2011
85 lbs dog does the trick for me...

He would lick them to death if they got within reach, but nobody even tries.
Jan 31, 2009
Kalamazoo, MI
Yes, we are going to a new campground next summer. And I expected to endure the chatter and traffic of being next to a walkway, and positioned my camper accordingly. I live in the city and I think I'm pretty tolerant of loud voices, loud music, loud dogs, loud kids, etc. I'd rather just 'live and let live' and try to be considerate of others and mind my own business.

But the bright spot of the weekend: the neighbors on the other side had a tent and a large pop up and about a gazillion people staying on the single site and were partying into the wee hours of the morning. My son finally got up and very politiely said "Pardon me, but could you please keep your voices down? My little brother is having a hard time sleeping" And the neighbors were quiet after that.

I guess I have to send my 12 year old from now on to shame people into behaving appropriately.


Active Member
Jan 31, 2013
Most of the time when we are at our site there at least 3-4 people doing some sort of activity so would be site crossers tend to skip is and cut through the next site, if not at my site and someone does it, we'll then I'm not there so I don't care. Some of the CG's we go to if your on the wrong end of the loop have to walk all the way around to use the bathroom, if my site is the "shortcut" I really don't mind unless they cross between my camper and the fire pit. If that happens I will say something if they stick to the "outside" of the site I don't mind at all, but I will say someone cutting though is a rare occurrence. Maybe happens once or twice a year.......

Just to be clear I don't cut through sites, common sense should tell people not to invade someone else's space, but for those that do do it I'm not going to get all bent out if shape


Active Member
May 6, 2013
It is usually not a problem but nicely letting someone know this is your space while here would probably go a long way. Most of the time we find it is generally kids and they just have not been shown the way things should work.


Wherever you go, there you are...
Aug 2, 2011
Steinbach, MB
Unstable_Tripod said:
People only walk through my site ONCE. If you don't want them to do it you have to stop them and tell them. The same with the dishwater.

In Manitoba provincial parks, the fines for dumping gray water go as high as $1260.00.

Dish water = gray water

Check with the CG staff and ask if it's okay to dump gray water (use the term "gray water") on the ground and be sure to ask them what the penalties and fines are so they have the data on hand. Ask them if dish water would be considered "gray water" then let them know what's going on with your neighbors.

I'm much more tolerant if it's a one-shot deal and we're only there for the weekend but not if it looks like it's going to become a regular thing. That's NOT cool at all.


Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
Albuquerque, NM
This is one of my pet peeves. Usually we can tell if it is likely to be an issue on site, if there are social paths cutting through the site, but that doesn't help much when we make reservations.
If it happens more than once, I will usually say something - I go by age and demeanor of the "crosser". For kids, I use the "please don't cut across our site, do you want me to walk through your living room at home?" comment. Adults it is usually just "please don't cut through our site".

Several years ago, a friend and I went ground camping at Zion NP, which has a lot of "casual campers". The ones behind us, which was actually a different loop kept cutting through our site, especially after dark, to get to the restroom on our loop. These were college-aged girls, with flip flips - which are horribly loud at a foot from the side of a tent at midnight. My friend finally had enough, since she doesn't sleep all that well as it is, and sat on the picnic table in the dark, waiting for the girls to return from the umpteenth trip. (I had my own tent so didn't realize just what was going on.) As they passed through, she asked them to please stop cutting through our site - I heard was "you scared me!" from one - but that group stopped doing it. In that campground, there is a good reason not to cut across sites, as irrigation ditches run between many of the sites; they are very visible in the daytime. On another night, we heard a woman try a short cut, step into the ditch and, more than likely, badly sprain an ankle.


Can't wait to Camp!
Apr 9, 2010
Makes you wonder what they do when you are gone from the camper? I would not like people snooping around my site while I am gone.


being crazy- has kept me from going insane
Aug 5, 2012
I agree it can be a pain but on some occasions it can be expected. For instance, when we camp at Billy Drear Island SP on Lake Murry, and have a water front site, the only way for campers across the street to access the water is to cut through or between the water front sites. Most people go on the edge of the sites (between two sites) and really don't interfere with your privacy that much. But sometimes young kids who have not been educated to proper manners will run right past the camper. I have no problem instructing them where to cross and where not to. And I say it nicely and hope the parents hear me and take care of business.

I have heard campers cut through my site in the middle of the night on a late night "Gotta Go" run to the Bath house. I have no problems with that either if they do it quietly and don't linger on my site. If they want to hang around my site and laugh or talk after quite time, they will see what an old man looks like in his underwear and a frown. This will make most want to leave quickly!!

I'm not hard to get along with if you show a little respect.


Art & Joyce - Columbus, O
Jul 18, 2013
Thornville, OH
We have had the same problems when camping next to walkways areas, along the beach or play areas.

We now will not pick a site that we know were going to have all the campers walking through the site.


Active Member
Dec 18, 2012
Ontario, Canada
Couple of weekends ago a man tried walking through my campsite.

He was met by my 75 lb Chesapeake bay retriever.... Who was on a tie out...
But dang is he scary when strangers come near.

The man turned around and went back to his site.... Never to step foot in mine again all weekend.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk 2


Super Active Member
Jul 30, 2012
Oh yes - that happened with my dog once too. He was lying down snoozing around the campfire when some teens with those head flashlights came walking through the backside of our camp cutting over to the bathrooms after dark. Scared the crap out of the dog, who jumped up with a big deep bark. They hadn't seen the dog, jumped out of their skin screaming and not knowing which way to run. He was on a tie-out too and they were safe, but I felt they got what they deserved ... lol. Sadly though, it didn't stop the same kids from continuing to cut through our site to the bathrooms all weekend. UGH.

On the other hand, a couple weeks ago we were at Franklin Mountains State Park camping. We had the entire place to ourselves all day - it was fabulous! But two nights in a row, after hours, some local teens who apparently knew the gate code snuck in to the park and claimed a giant picnic area at the top of the mountain as their campsite. It was NOT a campsite -- it was a large picnic area with multiple grills and about 10 tables, 20 parking spaces, trailhead, etc. Then before the ranger came in at around 10am, they'd pack up their sleeping bags and sneak back out. Whatever - not really my business. On night 1 they got rained out about midnight and left early. We ignored this. On night 2, they proceeded to drink all night long and giggle and laugh and sing and howl at the moon. They tried setting up their dome tent and couldn't handle it in their drunken state, so they put sleeping bags on the picnic tables and finally crashed there. We were supposed to pack up and head out at around 7am in the morning, so I was quite frustrated when their echoing mountain party was still carrying on at 2am, keeping me awake. In my tired frustration, I yelled across the campground "Will you shut up?" They giggled, and then toned it down a bit - maybe they didn't realize how far sound carries up there, but really we were quite close to them and it was LOUDLY echoing all around. Like I said, we were the only other ones there - no host, no ranger, ... just us. So, early the next morning when they were hungover and sleeping it off on the tables, we decided to go visit the picnic area with our rowdy dogs and talk and chat and hike. Yes, we were all over their "campsite" but I didn't feel the least bit guilty. Had they been decent neighbors, I would have looked the other way and left them in peace... but under the circumstances, it was a little fun to torment those bratty teens. :p


Popups.....when sleeping on the ground gets to you
Mar 13, 2007
Common sense, consideration for others, and respect for others is all but gone these days.



Popups.....when sleeping on the ground gets to you
Mar 13, 2007
Oh I forgot....that happened to us one time ALL DAY I strung up a rope all around the camp (I keep about 300 feet in my truck). This worked! I also noticed a lot of other people doing that also. I just don't know if they can sue you if they trip over it at night! I guess you could string Christmas lights all around, that would work.



Mar 2, 2011
Well this thread caught my eye because I have this issue a lot. We camp in the woods. Sometimes they are designated campsites and others its just out in the woods. No matter where we find a site next to the river so we can enjoy the river while we camp. No matter where we set up camp it seems someone feels its ok to come into our camp and access the river that way. The river is 75 miles long and they feel they need to park in your site and get out and goto the river where you are clearly camped at.

Growing up I was taught you never enter someones camp site unannounced or uninvited. There have been many times where fights have nearly broke out over people doing this.

I find it very frustrating in deed.