Unused reserved spots

Discussion in 'General Camping Discussion Forum' started by firepit, Jun 9, 2020.

  1. tfischer

    tfischer A bad day camping beats a good day at the office Gold Supporting Member

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    MN state parks used to do that but they went to 100% reservations a few years back, as many of those sites sat empty all season.
     
  2. neighbormike

    neighbormike Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Perfect!! [LOL][LOL]
     
  3. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    For me, it makes no sense to pay the extra online reservation fee when I know I can just go and get a site.

    There is one campground I always book ahead because I want one specific site. But at other campgrounds, one site is no better than the others, and I only camp there off season, so why bother reserving when I know there are available sites.

    I do check online regularly to make sure nothing changes (eg, closing a section, an unexpected surge in reservations, etc) up to two days before I head out. At one campground, I saw a sudden uptick of reserved sites two days before the trip, so I made a last minute reservation. But if that uptick hadn't happened I would have just gone.
     
  4. Jimbow

    Jimbow Well-Known Member

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    They paid for it. I don't really feel like I should tell someone how to spend their money. How many hours do they have to sleep at their site to qualify?

    I do remember years ago out east a huge late night argument. Seems a Class B was told they hadn't occupied the first night and lost their spot. They claimed they came in late and left early to attend some event that they were working. Nothing like pissed off people arguing with drunks with no host in site at midnight to make a memorable evening.
     
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  5. Jimbow

    Jimbow Well-Known Member

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    Sorry. We're usually gone for 6 to 8 weeks over the summer and move around a lot spending three or four days somewhere, then moving. We may only stay one night on our way to a different state. I guess I should look to see if we're moving on a Friday.

    Then during the school year I can't always get off Friday early enough to get to a campground at a decent hour and prefer to just camp on Saturday night. I didn't realize I was causing problems for people.
     
  6. Rik Peery

    Rik Peery Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Lol, no need to apologize or explain your situation, it is what it is, if you wanna move on a Friday, move on a Friday; main problem is the amount of no shows on any given weekend ...do what you have to do for family fun...
     
  7. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    If it's a private park, then I agree. But if it's a government campground, then I don't. Government campgrounds are there for the enjoyment of the public not for a select few. Would it be any different for someone to book up all the DMV appointments so no one else can get in, and then not bother to show?

    If there was no host, then it sounds like the one party declared the site "unoccupied" and just took it. To me that is not appropriate. Only the rangers or host should declare a site unoccupied and open it up for walkins.
     
  8. Jimbow

    Jimbow Well-Known Member

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    Access to a government campground is an interesting proposition. How about a two night maximum so more people can enjoy the park? Then people wouldn't book and not show up.

    The one out east had a you must occupy the first night policy.
     
  9. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

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    I think some of the national parks will end up reducing their maximum stay limit. For Yellowstone, Yosemite, etc., I think it's a good idea. Let more people enjoy it for a shorter time frame. I'd say make it a 4-day maximum. That gives people the ability to have two full days in the park, yet still lets more people visit.

    For state campgrounds, federal forests, etc., I think the 2 week maximum is still good. But the agency needs to work harder to prevent "cheaters" to their system.

    The "must occupy the first night" is a good policy. It works well out here. The key to it is that the ranger or host is the only one who can declare the site unoccupied. That doesn't happen until check out time the following day. So, if you are delayed, you can still save your reservation. The ranger/host may leave the reservation standing longer if there are other openings.

    I still think a sliding scale no show penalty would help a lot. A first time offense is minimal. No show multiple times in one season should result in a ban for a set number of future seasons as well as a significant monetary penalty - on top of losing the reservation AND the original reservation fee.
     
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  10. donaltman3

    donaltman3 New Member

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    I agree.. we have a government park here that people literally book for a month, they park their rv and leave it for days at a time without being in the park and use it like it is a lake house.
     
  11. tfischer

    tfischer A bad day camping beats a good day at the office Gold Supporting Member

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    2 night max is a bit extreme IMHO. I'd be for a "first night occupied" policy though, especially on campgrounds with a rolling reservation window which cause people to book extra days on the front to sneak their reservation in before others.
     
  12. firepit

    firepit Well-Known Member

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    Thankfully in my parts peak season is over and everything is walk up only.
    With chilly weather and water being turned off the campground will be less crowded
    Last weekend was the last week before peak season ended and the campground was way less crowded
    and hardly any tents.
     
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  13. PathfinderESP

    PathfinderESP Member

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    Recently I had a Friday to Monday booking at a MD State Park.
    Wife got delayed at work and one of the kids wasn't too well on the Friday so I called up the campground to ask whether our site might be given away.

    The response was the Site is mine for 3 days. Come whenever suits.
    We went down Sat to Mon no issues.
     

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