10 Top Camping Etiquette List: Clean up after yourself at your campground.

camping etiquette

We’ve all experienced it: You arrive at your campsite only to find garbage lying about the picnic table, half-burned food wrappers and aluminium cans in the fire pit, or worse, used toilet paper beside the next bush. It’s unfortunate whether you find a different location or pick up the trash and dump it away.

This need not be the standard.

Having fundamental, agreed-upon rules for behaviour in the outdoors is essential given the recent spike in new campers visiting the mountains.

Naturally, it starts with educating people on the fundamental trail and campground laws (don’t approach or feed wildlife, don’t remove tree branches for your fire, use bear boxes, observe conventional camping etiquette, etc.). The best answer, though, is to develop a culture where you leave your campsite, as well as the outdoors, cleaner than you found it, and you educate your kids to do the same.

The Leave No Trace Centre for Outdoor Ethics (800-332-4100), a 26-year-old international teaching programme with headquarters in Boulder, created and disseminates guidelines for moral outdoor excursions. The programme was developed to offer guidelines for reducing our impact on the landscapes we cherish so much.

LNT executive director Dana Watts noted that the growing number of people travelling to the nation’s mountains, deserts, canyons, and other wild lands is a problem.

She claimed that the increase in interest is a good development.

In a telephone conversation, Watts stated that “more people are getting outside, including more diverse groups and people who are new to the outdoors.” Although there are difficulties, she continued, “we think it’s terrific that more people desire to connect with nature and outside settings.
Despite this, Watts claimed that “nine out of 10 people don’t have the necessary information, skills, and techniques to leave no trace — there is a lot of learning to be had.”

In order to achieve this, the centre created a LNT Basics kit that breaks down and explains each of the seven guiding principles for how we should spend time in nature.

Watts emphasised the growing significance of Principle No. 1: Prepare in advance, know before you go, and plan ahead. Given that many public restrooms have been closed as a result of the pandemic, this is especially important right now when it comes to trash disposal.

To lessen your waste impact on park managers, always plan to “pack it in, pack it out” (take all of your rubbish with you when you leave).

Additionally, Watts noted that as more people enjoy the outdoors, it’s critical to work towards ensuring that our favourite trails and campgrounds are accessible to everybody.

She advised asking the question, “How can we make everyone feel welcome in the outdoors?” constantly. How can we make others feel welcomed by using kindness?

This might be as simple as saying hello to other hikers on the route or as complex as financially supporting organisations that assist in granting access to the outdoors to a wider range of people.

10 Top Camping Etiquette List


By adhering to these rules, you may give everyone the widest range of opportunities to enjoy nature while also assisting in maintaining the environment’s health for all living creatures.

Visit lnt.org to find out more.


  • Know the rules and any particular issues that apply to the place you’ll be visiting.
  • Be ready for crises, hazardous conditions, and severe weather.
  • Plan your travel to avoid periods of heavy traffic.
  • Visit as small a group as you can. Think about dividing larger groups into more manageable ones.
  • Reduce food waste by repackaging it.
  • To avoid using marking paint, rock cairns, or flagging, use a map and compass.


  • Existing pathways and campsites, rock, gravel, dry grasses, or snow are examples of durable surfaces.
  • Camping at least 200 feet from lakes and streams will help protect riparian regions.
  • Good camping spots are discovered, not created. A site does not need to be changed.
  • Utilise only the campsites and paths that are already there.
  • Even when the trail is muddy or rainy, stay in a single line.
  • Keep camping areas compact. Concentrate your efforts in places devoid of plants.
  • Use sparingly to avoid the development of pathways and campsites.
  • Avoid areas where effects are only starting to be felt.


  • Put it in and take it out. Look for garbage or food that has spilled at your campsite and in the rest areas. Throw away all food scraps, rubbish, and garbage.
  • At least 200 feet away from water, camp, and pathways, place solid human waste in “catholes” excavated 6 to 8 inches deep. When finished, hide and cover the cathole.
  • Toilet paper and hygiene supplies should be prepared.
  • Carry water 200 feet away from streams or lakes and use modest amounts of biodegradable soap to wash yourself or your dishes. Pour strained dishwater all over.


  • Keep the past alive: Culture-related structures and historical artefacts may be examined, but not touched.
  • Leave plants, rocks, and other natural elements exactly like you found them.
  • Don’t introduce or move non-native species.
  • Do not construct anything, including furniture or ditches.


  • The backcountry may suffer long-lasting effects from campfires. Use a portable burner to prepare food, and a candle lantern to provide light.
  • Use existing fire rings, fire pans, or mound fires in areas where fires are permitted.
  • Maintain little fires. Use only ground-based sticks that can be broken with your hands.
  • Disperse cold ashes after thoroughly putting out campfires and burning all wood and coal to ash.


  • Wildlife from a distance and observe it. Don’t pursue them or go up to them.
  • Never give animals food. The health of wildlife is harmed, their natural behaviours are changed, and they are exposed to predators and other risks when they are fed.
  • Store rations and rubbish safely to protect wildlife and your food.
  • Pets should either be kept at home or under constant control.
  • When animals is mating, nesting, rearing young, or during the winter, stay away.


When you go camping, you probably want to get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life. It’s crucial to be aware of how your behaviour could disturb other campers. The following advice will help you be mindful of others:

  • Keep in mind other guests and safeguard the calibre of their experience.
  • Be respectful. Give way to other trail users.
  • When passing pack animals, move to the trail’s downhill side.
  • Camp far from trails and other visitors while taking breaks.
  • Let the sounds of nature dominate. Avoid making loud noises or voices.
  • Respect the specified quiet times: Most campgrounds have set quiet times, typically from about 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. During this period, refrain from utilising generators, making loud noises, or listening to loud music.
  • Keep your voices down: It’s important to be aware of your volume even during the day. Avoid shouting or yelling and maintain a normal volume for conversations.
  • If you bring a pet with you camping, be aware that it shouldn’t bark excessively or bother other campers. Clean up after it and keep it on a chain.
  • Pay attention to your surroundings: When moving about the campground, be mindful of your speech and noise levels. Slamming doors, car doors, or trunk lids should be avoided because it can disturb nearby campers.


Building fires and using stoves to cook food while camping are frequent activities that, if done incorrectly, can be deadly. Here are some pointers on how to operate stoves safely and adhere to fire safety regulations:

  • Check at any fire restrictions: Before starting a fire, look at any fire restrictions in the area. Particularly during dry seasons or when there is a severe fire threat, certain campgrounds may outright forbid campfires.
  • If fires are permitted, keep them contained to designated fire rings or pits and keep the flames minimal. A fire should always be attended, and it should be doused before being left unattended.
  • Tents, chairs, and fuel canisters should all be kept away from stoves and flames to prevent mishaps. When using these items, make sure the area is well-ventilated.
  • Always have a fire extinguisher handy, and make sure everyone in your company knows how to use it.


Giving food to wild animals or leaving food unattended can have detrimental effects on both people and animals. Additional advice on how to keep your food safe and prevent feeding wild animals is provided below:

  • If you’re camping in a bear-infested area, store your food in bear-resistant containers; if none are available, hang it from a tree at least 10 feet above the ground and 4 feet from the storage place.
  • Feeding wild animals can lead to perilous circumstances since it can make them dependent on human food and make them lose their inherent dread of people. Animals may exhibit aggressive behaviour as a result, annoying other campers.
  • Be conscious of your surroundings: Be conscious of your surroundings and keep an eye out for any signals of nearby animals. Camping should not be done close to places where animals are known to congregate, such as berry patches or water sources.


The wonderful outdoors and connecting with nature can be experienced through camping, but it’s important to do it safely. By abiding by these dos and don’ts of camping etiquette, you can protect the environment, guarantee a fun camping trip for all, and make lifelong memories. In order to avoid leaving a trace, camp responsibly.

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