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Old 02-07-2021, 07:13 AM   #1
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Lot of Rope Light Under RV's While Camping All Night

While camping this past week at a state park in Tucson we noticed a new trend. Rope lights laid out on the ground all around the perimeter of the RV and tow vehicles. They leave these lights on all night. A few took the light show further and wrapped their RV's and trucks with rope lights too.

I'm okay with a few lights attached to awning while sitting outside, but these bright displays that are left on all night long really kill the night sky, which is part of the attraction of camping. It also makes enjoying a campfire difficult when your neighbor's RV's are lit up like billboards in Times Square.

Anyone else noticing this obnoxious trend?
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Old 02-07-2021, 07:23 AM   #2
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I have seen this for years..usually big 5th wheel or Class A's. It always seems to be people who have planted in the campground for a while, with elaborate pet fencing, outdoor cooking and dining facilities.
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Old 02-07-2021, 07:37 AM   #3
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I beg to disagree. Our dear Lucy wears a belt of LED lights around her middle once it gets dark. this applies whether she is out camping or at home in the alley behind our house. We do turn them off when we go to bed.

We have had many comments from other campers about how much they liked Lucy's lights and inquiries about where we got them and how they were installed and powered.

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Old 02-07-2021, 07:43 AM   #4
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The reason folks put those rope lights around the bottom of their units in Az is to keep the pack rats away
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Old 02-07-2021, 08:02 AM   #5
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The lights, themselves, don’t bother me, but leaving them on all night, particularly in campgrounds without a lot of distance between sites, can affect the sleep of those in neighboring sites.

Some may have blackout curtains, but many if not most do not.


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Old 02-07-2021, 08:04 AM   #6
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0n 8/20/2020, JenFM started a similar thread, Campground’s/Camper’s Too Bright Lights. It quickly devolved into two lines of thought: “I paid to stay here, and I’ll do what I want!” vs. “Why can’t we be considerate and enjoy nature?” (You can guess what camp I fit in.) More than you want to know about bucket lights, etc. There were some good suggestions offered for finding “dark sky” parks.
Others have mentioned using under-trailer lights to deter packrats. That may have been a factor in Tucson.
Happy camping!
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Old 02-07-2021, 08:07 AM   #7
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My neighbors love my rope lights and the open frame generator I run all night to power them!
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Old 02-07-2021, 08:49 AM   #8
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I should have taken a photo of our neighbors light show. Well beyond packrat deterrence. Lots of rope lights, different colors, blinking. On the ground and wrapping their trailer, and perimeter of campsite. Left the lights on all night.

Its the leaving lots of bright outdoor lights on after retiring for the evening, or leaving loud outdoor music on after retiring that's my complaint. Both are disrespectful and obnoxious. That's my feeling anyway. But I'm just a grumpy old guy.

As far as packrats, not totally convinced lights have any effect. Lived in Arizona on and off for almost 40 years and never had a packrat problem, nor know anyone with that problem while camping. Few years ago people started leaving truck hoods cracked open, then placing a light in the engine bay, now running rope lights everywhere.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:08 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kscherzi View Post
While camping this past week at a state park in Tucson we noticed a new trend. Rope lights laid out on the ground all around the perimeter of the RV and tow vehicles. They leave these lights on all night. A few took the light show further and wrapped their RV's and trucks with rope lights too.

I'm okay with a few lights attached to awning while sitting outside, but these bright displays that are left on all night long really kill the night sky, which is part of the attraction of camping. It also makes enjoying a campfire difficult when your neighbor's RV's are lit up like billboards in Times Square.

Anyone else noticing this obnoxious trend?

More and more...new campers seem to think every site has to be like Disneyland. Forgive them(in most cases) they don’t even know what they’re doing.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:16 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by GetawA-S View Post
There were some good suggestions offered for finding “dark sky” parks.
Even at dark sky parks we've encountered the lights. I think they are obnoxious and inconsiderate. If you're afraid of the dark, stay home.

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Old 02-07-2021, 09:16 AM   #11
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Other solution

We place small solar powered motion activated lights under our 25’ International that only turn on for a few moments should “something unwanted” come by after dark. They have worked so far to keep unwanted guests away, and I believe do little to annoy other campers.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:29 AM   #12
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by kscherzi View Post
While camping this past week at a state park in Tucson we noticed a new trend. Rope lights laid out on the ground all around the perimeter of the RV and tow vehicles. They leave these lights on all night. A few took the light show further and wrapped their RV's and trucks with rope lights too.

I'm okay with a few lights attached to awning while sitting outside, but these bright displays that are left on all night long really kill the night sky, which is part of the attraction of camping. It also makes enjoying a campfire difficult when your neighbor's RV's are lit up like billboards in Times Square.

Anyone else noticing this obnoxious trend?

Most are putting them out to keep critters from chewing on wiring in their vehicles. Critters don't like light, nocturnal. A real problem in the desert. They could be more considerate and place them under the vehicles where they really deter critters. Less light pollution that way... may not have been their reasons but it is one. be safe. #7805
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:43 AM   #13
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$3,000 damage from critters

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajoharley View Post
Most are putting them out to keep critters from chewing on wiring in their vehicles. Critters don't like light, nocturnal. A real problem in the desert. They could be more considerate and place them under the vehicles where they really deter critters. Less light pollution that way... may not have been their reasons but it is one. be safe. #7805
There are lots of opinions on everything...I never used "scare lights" until rodents decided to build a condo in the control module box of my truck. I use white LED strings of christmas lights. They're under the truck and trailer and doubled under the vulnerable places and not 100% of the time. Only in locations where it seems like they might be needed. Like at home where there is no human activity in or around the truck and trailer for several days at a time.
No one has ever expressed any annoyance.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:44 AM   #14
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Cousin Eddie is always in the trailer/RV camping/ glamping equation.
National Lampoons Christmas Vacation, should be required viewing for all those new to the whole " wheel camping" thingy.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:47 AM   #15
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I like the idea of having a motion sensor on the lights. That's more likely to deter animals and serves as a safety mechanism.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:52 AM   #16
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Lights or Damage

I agree that some folks overdo the decorative light shows. But having spent some time at Catalina S P and Lost Dutchman SP in AZ, we’ve found that a light beneath the truck hood, and an LED lantern or two under the trailer, are necessary evils. First night at Catalina, pack rats chewed on the firewall of our truck. A friend in the outer loop had to have their truck towed to a dealer for $5,000 in repairs by the time they noticed the damage done by rodents. We now bring foil insulation to block out unwanted light. Now, dark sky territory is entirely different. Should be no lights there.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:58 AM   #17
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I installed Boogey lights this summer. Great fun in certain situations! But I always turn out all the lights at bedtime. It’s just common courtesy.
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Old 02-07-2021, 09:58 AM   #18
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True about the critters, you really don't want a skunk moving in.

And also true about obnoxious. We've learned to gently talk to folks unaware their lights are intrusive. We had a hybrid trailer (tent ends on a regular trailer) and the errant campground lights were a huge issue. At night, our bunks would be lit up like a stage because the 5th wheel next door had lights all around. One nice guy turned them on motion sensor and that was worse, we were being flashed every time a leaf blew under his trailer (think Christmas Vacation!). Third night he graciously turned them all the way off.

In a boon docking site, the tent camper across the way had construction flood lights pointed at us at night. His kids were afraid of the dark, and he liked the soft light from not having them pointed at him (duh). We bought his kids flashlights in exchange for dousing the overpowering floodlights.

In a campground, the light issue can extend to street lights, headlights and guys wandering to the bathroom with 2500 lumen tactical flashlights. Light blocking drapes help as does asking to move to a new site if you are placed next to a trailer decorated like the Griswold's.

Understand the family in the pop up camper, those are the folks whose kids will be cranky and noisy at 6:00 am because they didn't get any sleep with all the light. And double check just how your lights affect others around you.
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Old 02-07-2021, 10:12 AM   #19
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Unfortunately, most campers come from an urban environment with all night street lights, porch lights and motion detectors. I guess leaving all of these outside lights on gives them some unfounded sense of security. But then there are others with the outside kitchens with sound systems and big screen TV's that become an extended living room that they feel a need to light up. Campgrounds have become an outdoor party place.
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Old 02-07-2021, 10:13 AM   #20
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Strongly agree. It saddens me that so many more people are taking an “I’m the only one who matters” stance. I have no quarrel with a single strand under the trailer, but I suspect campground managers should be politely asked to enforce a dark skies policy past 10 pm for those like your neighbor who insist on making their unit look like an all-night diner.
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