Lights at night!

Discussion in 'Campground Etiquette' started by Sneezer, Jul 25, 2016.

  1. Sneezer

    Sneezer Well-Known Member

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    Just got back from a week at McKinney Falls SP in Austin, TX. Had a great time there, and noticed a good amount of PUPs there as well. However - on our second to last night, this big travel trailer pulled in. Not a 5th wheel, but about as big as you can get without being one. Two doors on the side to get in, etc. It was a newer model, and had a V strip of LED lights on the nose, along with another under the canopy. These were the bright white LEDs. The awning ones were not too bad, although they were bright. The nose light was intense, and lit up the camp road like a streetlight. They kept both on all night. You could have sat in the road and read a book.

    That was about the only negative experience I had all week.
     
  2. Customer

    Customer Well-Known Member

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    Some people fear the dark and think everyone shares their foibles.
     
  3. davido

    davido Active Member

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    That does seem inconsiderate. Does the campground have a policy regarding light pollution?

    It's an issue that is probably not well addressed by most campgrounds, and if a policy existed, it would be hard to administer in a way that doesn't appear arbitrary to those asked to turn off their lights unless it were fairly straightforward. Something like strictly no motion lights, and no exterior night lights burning longer than 10 minutes at a time after 10pm. That would be easy to enforce but probably quite unpopular with people who want to keep a dim porch light on.

    If a policy were based on lumens it would be impossible to enforce -- people offended by the light would assume everything reached the threshold, and people running their lights would assume they were below the threshold or that some other neighbor was more guilty then them.

    Some neighbors would probably not mind if you mentioned the following day, "You know, the exterior light on the front of your trailer was kind of shining in our trailer's windows last night, and made it hard to sleep. Would you mind shutting it off tonight?" But it sort of depends on the personality of the person being asked to tone it down, and the charisma of the person doing the asking. Sending the DW to ask is often more diffusing of the situation than sending DH. Bringing a couple beverages might be a good peace offering. ;)
     
  4. mamabean5

    mamabean5 Well-Known Member

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    The pup next to us this past weekend had those very large, colorful round lights, with white light hanging from their awning. Being that our sites were on top of each other, they shone right in our windows and lit up my entire camper and out into the street behind. It was like having a string of streetlights 5' over your head! Finally
    at 1 a.m. they went to bed and thankfully, shut them off. If they hadn't, I already had my shoes on and was about to go knock on their door.

    PUP members, help me to understand why people need such bright light when you're sitting around a campfire talking? I don't get it. [?:~{]
     
  5. Halford

    Halford Well-Known Member

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    Deaf campers need good lights for communication purposes... but not that extreme! We would limit the led lights to awning area... like I do.
     
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  6. kudzu

    kudzu Active Member

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    BF is very, very nearsighted & needs bright light to see well, to the extend that even in well lit rooms he will often use a high lumen, LED flashlight to get a better look at something. Poor guy had to use his flashlights a lot more often after we moved in together because I am extremely far sighted & bright lights hurt my eyes, making it difficult for me to see. We're quite a pair. When camping or when I am in the same room, he readily accepts dimmer light, again using a flashlight or headlamp to light one small area where he is working. When we started camping again, he needed a few reminders to keep the beam of his light aimed away from others' tents & campers. (And away from my face. [V] ) Now, he tries to be very aware of this.
     
  7. unclemark

    unclemark Overland Park, KS

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    I try to avoid sites near street lights and other sources of light pollution. I have some bright lights for cooking and camper setup in the dark though, so I'm not an absolutist. Brights after 1030 are annoying.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  8. kcsa75

    kcsa75 Well-Known Member

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    I have a propane lantern that I light in the evening sometimes. But normally we light two or three old kerosene lanterns or tiki torches filled with citronella juice to keeps bugs away. Unless I'm trying to read something, that's more than enough light. [:)C]
     
  9. Fleetwood Max

    Fleetwood Max Member

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    Those Led white lights are to much.. they needed to be off after a certain time.. I have lots of LED color lights on my awning bar and can flash with the best of them. plus all the other lights ol girl wants to have on. But when quite time arrives they all come off except for the step light under the steps. Just in case we have to hurry out..
     
  10. durhamcamper

    durhamcamper Active Member

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    We don't get it either. There have been times when I have needed to put up a tarp between trees to block light from neighboring sites so that we could enjoy our campfire.
     
  11. Strawhouse

    Strawhouse Well-Known Member

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    I was at a provincial park recently, and the neighbours across the road had a 'landing strip' of LED lights around the perimeter of their 5th wheel. Yes, they left them on all night.
    The worst part was they called the camp staff to come out and complained that the tree branches were in their way to get out. Two days later, the staff came out with a chain saw and cut down several branches, including ones that screened my campsite from the road. They must have been regular visitors, because the staff said that they would see them in two weeks. When they left the next day, they had to make a 15-point turn to get out of their site. This could all have been avoided, if they had just asked the staff to monitor the loop while they drove the 'wrong way' out of the loop--and they wouldn't have cut down the branches! [:!]
     
  12. flat_twin

    flat_twin Member

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    I've been known to light a lantern or lamp at camp while we need the light. Bright lights are dimmed by evening time.
    [​IMG]


    At certain gatherings there are exceptions, like when we know we won't offend our neighbors.
    See drone photo below. Can you tell where the Coleman Collectors group was camped?


    [​IMG]
     
  13. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    We don't leave any lights on all night. We do tend to stay up until at least midnight and often have a Coleman lantern on during that time, as well as the amber "porch" light of the Pup and sometimes a string of clear Christmas lights on the awning if we have shore power. The only one of these that's unusually bright is the Coleman lantern, but then it's designed for camping and we use it on the picnic table where we keep the amores supplies, etc.

    I see no reason to keep any light on all night, much less an unusually bright one. If you need to get up in the middle of the night and go somewhere, you can turn it back on (although I'd normally not and just use a flashlight)
     
  14. davekkk

    davekkk Active Member

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    Couple of places we went to last year, mostly private campgrounds, every big camper had the bright white awning lights on most the night. Some of them had them in fade on and off mode, and no one was outside. One person had rope light strung around on the ground around their camper on all night. It doesn't really bother me though, lights my way to the bathroom!

    I haven't had this experience with country or state parks, but we usually have sites with no shore power and have mostly tent campers around us.

    I personally don't mind gas lanterns, even if they are bright.
     
  15. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    I have yet to camp in a private campground (other than more than a decade ago in a tent) so I think that avoids many/most of the problems people post here. e.g. light pollution, "do you feel like a 2nd class citizen in a pop-up", etc. At state and county parks, huge pushers are the exception, there are usually several other pop-ups (plus many tents), and the average person there is in a modest travel trailer or hybrid, and there to enjoy nature/the camping experience.

    We've had minor annoyances but never anything major (not to jinx myself)
     
    Toedtoes likes this.
  16. webhannet

    webhannet Member

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    I haven't "been out there" for a while, but having all the trailer "road lights" (marker and tail lights" on most of the evenings was a growing fashion for a while. It's easy to do by wiring backward from the trailer connector. Why, because they wanted to show off. It's rude to others and adds even more or a carnival atmosphere to campground settings.

    The old fashion rope lights were far less bright than new LED rope lights (I'd use a dimmer to give a low glow to either style) - and the different can be offensive. Something to remember when you're unrolling 40 feet of these. LEDs can have a dimmer.

    I found using rope lights to define my site cut down of people crossing through, people falling down, as well as other campers' junk overflowing into my site.
     
  17. xxxapache

    xxxapache Well-Known Member

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    I reckon I am rude to others and look like part of a carnival [:D]. I put a fuse in my trailers pig tail to power my tail lights and marker lights. .... They actually put off a subtle light around the trailer and are far from blinding.
     
    Mamie likes this.
  18. JustRelax

    JustRelax Active Member

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    I am with you on lights. Bright lights are worse than noise IMO. I have put an LED strip on my camper and stick with blue when I am needing to do something and red when the kids are still up to light under the awning. The red all the way dimmed is more than enough to see what you are doing and barely noticeable from the road.

    I had a guy put the rope lights between our sites on the ground one time this year. Plugged them in and went to bed. It was behind his camper and out of site for him but 10 feet from where we were enjoying the fire. They lasted less than 30 seconds after their lights went out in the camper before being unplugged. I figured he was getting ready to do a walk around on the camper or something so I was going to let it be for a few minutes - nope plugged them in and went to bed. I hadn't noticed them on the ground all day either but sure were bright when plugged in. Never said anything about it but didn't get plugged in the following night. Don't have a clue what purpose they served - a sense of security or a marker for their site on a late night potty break are a couple of guesses. They were playing guitar until 11:30 and were pretty good so had no problems at all with that.
     
  19. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    Here is a look at the lights in our dining tent on a recent trip..

    [​IMG]

    Our light set up from 2015.

    [​IMG]

    Now we normally turn them all off when we head in for the night. One reason we have all the lights is for the dogs, so we can see where they are wandering to and can pick up after them instead of finding presents the next morning..
     
  20. Strawhouse

    Strawhouse Well-Known Member

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    Really liked your coloured 'bucket' lights (like the white one in your top photo) at Down by the River rally! :)
    Pat
     

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