Lights at night!

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

  1. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    If people were walking that close to my tent (or camper) I'd be setting up my own trip lines further out.
     
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  2. Douggro

    Douggro Active Member

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    We've rigged up six of them with red LED's for when we're out stargazing. Same deal: mark guy lines and other points to navigate in the dark. Not so much because people are cutting through our camp, but just for our convenience - and to be able to find our camp the dark!
     
  3. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    We've camped in some very dark campgrounds. We tried some of the garden lights, but they turned off about the time I had to make my middle of the night restroom run. Since we now have an on-board bathroom, I don't depend on the solar lights to last that long, but they will last a few hours if set out in the sun during the day. The bottle of lights is much less intrusive than the porch light, and doesn't use the TT's battery. I've also resorted to reflective tape on guy lines at times (we have some reflective cording on some), and reflective tacks to mark a stake near the sites (mixed results on that experiment).
    On our last trip, I bought those orange cut-off cones used for soccer drills (I think). They were very handy to mark a couple of stakes that were in my path in the campsite - they go right over the stake, the guy line keeps it from blowing away, and no light required - showed up surprisingly well even in semi-darkness. The Stellar's jays weren't sure what to make of the cone, or the end of the guy line - they tried to take the cod a couple of times.
     

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  4. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Well-Known Member

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    Just rolled in from Crooked Creek SP in Georgia. We had one "special" camper there that had the light projectors on both sides of his TT- and they were synchronized for the same rotating and changing graphics. These lights ran ALL NIGHT LONG. We left after two nights.
     
  5. Dback2k4

    Dback2k4 Active Member

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    That is irritating. I'm jealous though that you're out camping. We're having record low temperatures and record snow fall here in Iowa. It's made worse by the fact that I moved my camper last month from my old storage facility to my work place so I see the thing almost every day. The "bug" to get to use it has started biting early this year!!!
     
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  6. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

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    We have very little light coming from our site. Usually only 1, but sometimes 2 Coleman napatha lanterns. If we go for a walk at night, that will sit in the middle of the picnic table and get turned down to about 1/2 brightness while we're gone. We have a single 60 watt light bulb that hangs in our kitchen tent for eating and playing card games after supper. A few crappy AAA battery string lights hang under our awning, because I hate having to turn on the porch light and attract all the bugs right to the opening door. And of course a regular sized campfire, not huge, just nice.

    2 years ago, my son bought some projector lights for camping. At first, I wasn't sure about them, but now they are now on the permanent equip list for the Pup. I don't think that these are too invasive for other campers. These ones have about a million green laser lights that shine straight up into the trees, and look like stars when they hit the tree leaves. They don't shine into other people's campsites, or onto any trailers or tents anywhere, not even ours. They do not rotate or swirl. They are nice and soft and do not change colours. We have had compliments from other surrounding campers that they like them, and where they could buy some. If someone was bothered by them, I would turn them off right away.

    All of this said, we usually go to bed around 12-1:00AM, and everything gets turned off at bedtime. I hate any lights while trying to sleep. Everything goes dark. If you need to get up in the middle of the night, everyone has their own flashlight in their bed. Don't turn on any lights to wake the whole crew up.
     
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  7. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

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    Last year, summer of 2018, we were at our favorite Northern Ont Prov Park. One night, on about the second week, during the evening, there was a glow on the horizon. At about 10:00 PM, we went for a walk to see what was amiss. 2 roads over was a huge crowd of people occupying 4 campsites, all adjacent and across from each other. You are allowed 6 people per campsite, but it seemed like there were more people than that. They moved all of the picnic tables (2 per site) onto one site, and had them all lined up in one long row, where most of the people were sitting and eating. They were middle Eastern people and were cooking up a storm, and the aroma of the spices wafted up and down the road quite far. Honestly, it smelled pretty good, but I don't think I'd want to smell that all night long. The light came from 2 of those sites. Those 2 lighted sites had a string of lights that spanned through the middle of each of the 2 sites. The light strings were probably 30 feet long each and had a bare light bulb hanging every foot and a half or so. The bulbs were so bright, they had to be 100 watts each. During the night, I woke up at around 3:30 AM, and I could see that the lights were still on. Our neighboring campsites were all talking about the glow. My sister was camping one road closer to the light than what we were, and it was bothering them. I told her to go to the front Ranger office and complain, but she didn't. The lights happened for 2 more nights, then they all packed up and took off. The light didn't bother me because it was too far away, but if it did, I would've been getting it all shut down. Funny thing though, park staff drive through the park all day and night, and the lights stayed on. I thought for sure that they would've been told to tone it down some. There was a neighboring campsite to the lights, and the guy just hung up a tarp and put up with it. Not sure what the purpose of all the light was.
     
  8. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    I may put up a lantern outside near our chairs during evening conversations. I do have one of those solar firefly in a jar thingies that I'll hang on a lantern hook outside. I have glow in the dark tape to use on my FnR awning poles and guy lines as needed. I have a magnetic puck light I can stick on my clipper bumper and the door light on the FnR if I need something other than flashlight lighting. Other than those, I don't use outside lights. I like the dark. I use flashlights as needed to walk in the dark.

    When inside, I will use the main lights for cooking and eating and visiting. When I am alone inside, the lights are out. I read using my kindle paperwhite, so I don't need lights to do so. I have those LED battery operated light switch lights in each camper's bathroom for nighttime needs. If I go out for a nighttime walk, I will leave a light inside the camper turned on - it creates a nice window glow but does not shine outside.

    No colored lights, no scare lights, no string lights, no decorative lights. I prefer those around me skip them also - I want to see the shadows of night in the forest not your camper. But, as long as you don't have lights that affect my night vision, shine in my campsite, or flicker/flash/etc., to the point of bringing on a migraine, I will ignore your lights.

    I can say, this is, so far, one problem I haven't dealt with.
     
  9. BedHead

    BedHead Member

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    We have asked next door neighbours to turn bright lights off a couple of times, if they've been shining right on our bed really late at night. I've also started taking one of those sleeping blindfolds with me. And ear plugs. Hubby says I have bionic hearing. Honestly, I am finding that the older I get the less considerate other campers are becoming with respect to things like lights, and walking through our sites. One way to cut down on light pollution is to camp where there's no power. Sometimes that helps.
     
  10. Andy G.

    Andy G. Member

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    We normally are asleep after dark, but will use an LED lantern or flashlight for trips to the potty. I find the "all-night light" folks to be self-centered and clueless to other people's wishes of enjoying the stars.
     
  11. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    I find the same thing, although in reality I think it's more that I am more bothered by, and therefore aware of, other people's behaviors then they are actually doing it more.
     
  12. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    I now have three bottles of solar powered lights, though how many are in use (if any) really depends on the campground and specifics of the site. I have to add something to filter the light of one set, since I think they're too bright. One set gets tucked under the edge of the camper, next to the door step. The others are used as needed to mark the coupler, or hazards in the site. At the last SOTF event I attended, we were camped at large over the campground. There was a bad hole that I did not notice until I had the trailer all set up, and it was in a place where it would have been easy for someone to step in. I did try to fill it with my Lynx blocks, but it was still a hazard, and so I marked it with a bottle of lights.
    I don't like to turn our porch light or the work light on the front of the trailer on unless really necessary. Not crazy about moving lights, awning lights, lights aimed up into trees, etc., or ones that are simply ornamental all night long.
    We found out that the rope lights some had out under their campers in an AZ state park were for protection from pack rats. They can move in very quickly - our friends found the start of a nest under the hood when they stayed in an AZ campground where it was recommended to leave the hood up. They didn't open it for something like half a hour.
    The rope lights were mostly at the host sites, though a few in other sites, They weren't as intrusive as the LED work light someone had - badly aimed - under their truck. The rope lights may be annoying to some, but pack rat damage is expensive. We found that the light did not spill far enough to wreck the dark sky, we saw more shooting stars that night than in a very long time.
     
  13. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    As with most things, I think if there is a reason for the light, then it's OK. And I may not know the reason why someone else put out the light (e.g., packrats, hole, etc), so I assume they have a reason for it unless proven otherwise.
     
  14. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    If you're inside the camper sleeping and it's 2AM, there is virtually no reason for a light to be on. If you need to get up in the middle of the night, that's why God invented light switches and flashlights.
     
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  15. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    At 2 am, lights to keep packrats away are necessary. There may be other reasons that are unknown to me (or you or someone else). Unless the light was shining in my camper so I couldn't sleep, I would assume to the benefit of the other person.

    I will acknowledge that this isn't a problem out here.
     
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  16. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    If you are afraid of wildlife coming then you probably shouldn't be out in the wilderness camping.
     
  17. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    It's not a matter of being afraid of wildlife. It's a matter of pack rats eating through your electrical wires, etc., while you sleep. They can do a lot of damage in just a couple hours. Like you, I don't live around packrats, but if you do, you take whatever precautions you can.
     
  18. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

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    The pack rat issue is not just in the wilderness, it is a big problem in places in AZ and NM, and can cause thousands of $$ in damage. We don't seem to have as much of a pack rat issue here in town, though friends had one get in their ceiling space and chew wires to a kitchen light. (Wife said she heard something in the ceiling, husband didn't, next thing they knew, the light was out. They did catch the pack rat.)
    Even ground squirrels can be an issue, not that we have lights out for them - believe me I was tempted though, after a ground squirrel chewed the ignition wires in the truck - while it was parked in our driveway. Good new is it was one set of wires so was only $400.
    There isn't an easy solution to protection from the rodents (apparently marmots have caused issues at trailheads in CO), but if rope lights under a trailer in a campground help, I now understand the need.
     
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  19. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

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    Rope lights under a trailer wouldn't bother me. What does bother me is bucket lights, blinding LED lights, etc running all night. Fortunately we don't run into this issue often where we camp (I suspect if you frequent RV Park(ing lot)s it would be worse.

    I do wonder if these people have lights under their trailer even when it's in storage 100% of the time, though.
     
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  20. Muller 5

    Muller 5 Active Member

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    I plan to have dim lights around my camp at night. We don't have a bathroom onboard, and I want a way for my kids to find "home" in the dark. I hope that what I choose won't be too obnoxious.
     

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