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Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby Cross Country » Thu Jun 23, 2011 1:55 pm

I've camped with or very close to "new friends" lots of times. When I went alone I welcomed company but rarely found it at remote cross country lakes. I'm a very gregarious person. I started conversations almost every chance I got in the BC. The vast majority of the times I camped on trail was mid week. I almost alway began my trips midweek. Even just one day in on trail there aren't very many people mid week. By the weekend I was cross country. People cross country almost alway keep their distance when camping.



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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby mokelumnekid » Thu Jun 23, 2011 2:54 pm

Having seen and experienced this- tho not often- I have concluded that some people WANT to camp around others, and will actually seek that out, possibly without realizing it explicitly. The herd mentality, "Oh look, some folks are camping over there, so that must be where the CAMPING is." To people like this, they would prefer to be close to others because they internalize the whole experience of backpacking like any other activity. You don't go bowling by yourself, so why go camping by yourself? Etc., etc. In fact they feel SORRY for you lonely losers! Folks like this are usually found in established campgrounds, but occasionally leak into the backcountry and often then wonder what in tarnation the big deal is.

I don't mean to be judgmental, really. Just a different strokes thing.

I have to admit after one long solo trip where I spent about 6 days by myself, I was happy to see someone camped not too far off, and did go over just to chew the fat. But I didn't camp within ear shot!
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby RoguePhotonic » Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:41 pm

You don't go bowling by yourself, so why go camping by yourself?


I have never understood this with other people. In my mind they are just not that into it. My feeling is if anyone else wants to come along then great I welcome you but if I have no one to go with you better believe I am going anyway!
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby Cross Country » Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:49 pm

Those who have some acquaintance with me know that I never "leaked" into the backcountry. I went on many solo trips but only because at those times I couldn't interest someone to go with me. About 80%+ of my trips I went with someone. Those times I went solo I always enjoyed myself. To imply that to want some company is pathological is absolutely ridiculous. People are very similar to one another in a very healthy state, and different from one another too. No one side is right here. However the least pathological under normal circumstances is this: Human beings are more naturally comfortable with other people than they are isolated. If one side is more pathological (I'm not saying one side is) it would be the isolationist. I would hope that this is obvious to everyone.
Last edited by Cross Country on Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby rlown » Thu Jun 23, 2011 6:55 pm

mokelumnekid wrote:Having seen and experienced this- tho not often- I have concluded that some people WANT to camp around others, and will actually seek that out, possibly without realizing it explicitly. The herd mentality, "Oh look, some folks are camping over there, so that must be where the CAMPING is." To people like this, they would prefer to be close to others because they internalize the whole experience of backpacking like any other activity. You don't go bowling by yourself, so why go camping by yourself? Etc., etc. In fact they feel SORRY for you lonely losers! Folks like this are usually found in established campgrounds, but occasionally leak into the backcountry and often then wonder what in tarnation the big deal is.

I don't mean to be judgmental, really. Just a different strokes thing.

I have to admit after one long solo trip where I spent about 6 days by myself, I was happy to see someone camped not too far off, and did go over just to chew the fat. But I didn't camp within ear shot!


Same thing when fishing. Oh, there's a boat, let's go anchor up within casting distance.. :\ Or, look at that guy on that point.. lets go cast next to him..

Guess I just need to wash less and let the aroma do it's job. :lol:
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby quentinc » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:06 pm

Cross Country wrote:To imply that to want some company is pathological is absolutely ridiculous. People are very similar to one another in a very healthy state, and different from one another too. No one side is right here. However the least pathological under normal circumstances is this: Human beings are more naturally comfortable with other people than they are isolated. If one side is more pathological (I'm not saying one side is) it would be the isolationist. I would hope that this is obvious to everyone.

CC, I don't think anyone is suggesting that wanting to have friends accompany you on backpacks is pathological. But that's a lot different than a total stranger inviting themselves into your space. Even that is hardly pathological, but it certainly is incredibly self-centered and inconsiderate. There's also a big difference between casually striking up a conversation with someone you come across in the backcountry and deciding completely on your own that they need to have the company of your tent next to them. Obviously, one of the draws of backpacking for many people is the solitude. Nothing pathological about that. It doesn't mean they are or want to be isolated all the time.
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby Cross Country » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:16 pm

To quentinc. I agree with what you said.
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby AlmostThere » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:50 pm

If I want to take people with me, I do. I frequently chat with people I meet on the trail too - met some good folks that way and learned a lot too.

What I don't do is pitch smack in the middle of their camp - it would be sort of like going to their house and letting myself in. I'll go over and visit, but I'll find my own spot and set up my own camp. Nothing pathological about having respect for the privacy of others - they came on the trip to spend time in the backcountry with each other, not me.
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby Cross Country » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:55 pm

To AlmostThere. I agree with what you said too.
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Re: Wilderness Camping Etiquette?

Postby mokelumnekid » Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:00 pm

CC:

I re-read my message and am wondering what in it somehow made it seem that I regard any aspect of this as 'pathological.' Something about it ticked you off- please explain. Hmmm...I meant in in the context of unconnected groups, I only brought up the bowling metaphor as what seemed to be a transparent end-member simply as an illustration. I have fabulous memories of going out in groups of all sizes (tho mostly with my wife) and some memorable solo ones too. In fact my point was that it is not 'pathological' when strangers decide to share your space, but rather that they register and respond to being in the back country in an entirely different way, and a way that is native and natural to them.

????
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