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Old 09-11-2010, 12:30 PM   #1
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Introducing "Super Night Camping"

I've noticed that we have been getting quiet a few campers and since we are all family here I wanted to share a little trick we've been doing for years. We usually go camping quite a bit during the year. We usually camp in dispersed camping in the National Forest. Unfortunately, there aren't alot of National Forest close to us the one we have is great but it doesn't get us out of the heat (most of the time). So in the summer we head up to Kings Canyon or Sequoia National Park and from there further north. These places take us about 6 hours to get to. We leave Friday after work (my wife and I are teachers so on these trips we leave soon after the kids get out). By the time we get hitched up it usually is around 4pm.

In this type of situations we "Super Night Camp". That what I call it anyways. It's when we pull off at night (around 9pm) and sleep. It sounds easy enough right? It's not easy-- lots of cities and towns don't want you pulling off to the side of their streets to sleep. They are afraid you'll set up camp and stay there for prolonged periods of time. Even REST STOPS (at least around here) don't want you to actually sleep in our REST STOPS-- their definition of rest is different then yours and mine. Anyways, you have to be careful and (some might describe it as sneaky) when choosing a place to catch a few ZZZs. That's where "Super Night Camp" comes in.

"Super Night Camp" is when you pull over and catch some ZZZs in plain sight-- yet blend in so seamlessly that no-one notices you. I'm not talking about pulling into a Wal Mart (which I'm not above doing). I just prefer to pull over someplace that isn't lighted as much. I have a hard time sleeping under parking lights. So we look for places like auto mobile repair shops where it looks as though we're getting some service done on our truck. Another place we like to Super Night Camp is around industrial strip buildings. There are all kinds of business like detail shops, paint shops, ect where a truck and travel trailer might be dropped off to have some work done. In all the years we've done this I've never been bothered. I can't say that about REST STOPS and Wal Marts.

My favorite place to Super Night Camp though (because it's funny to me) is in front of a RV/ Trailer lot. It's just so perfect and in the morning if the shop opens early enough we can snoop at trailers or the parts department (one of my favorite things to do for some odd reason).

Now there are some that will say I'm taking money away from local camp grounds-- but guess what-- I don't care. I don't to pay $35 for 8 hours of sleep. Nor do I want to wake people up pulling into a camp ground at 10 o'clock at night. I just want to pull in, climb into the trailer, pull down the shades, maybe grab a bowl of ice cream, tell my son a story and catch some ZZZs.
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Old 09-11-2010, 01:11 PM   #2
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I forgot to mention-- that we only do this when on the road and get tired. In the morning we head on out on our way. Sometimes we start the generator to run the microwave, or cool the trailer down or whatever, but I have it mounted on the back of the trailer and it's the type that are "whisper" quiet. Whatever the case maybe it doesn't stay on long. Sometimes I'll put the jacks down. I have a cordless drill that lowers them in seconds. It all depends though.

Safety: We've never had a problem-- if someone wanted in, they'd have to get through my two boxers, then they'd be told to smile and wait for the flash-- of my 1911.

The key is subtle stealth'ness, and using your noodle.

sorry about the typos and that run-on sentence, I forgot the period up there.
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Old 09-11-2010, 02:46 PM   #3
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Parking around a business isn't a great idea, especially in the bigger cities because of crime. Police will ask you to leave after checking you for warrants etc. It just doesn't sound safe to me. I would find a campground.
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Old 09-11-2010, 05:17 PM   #4
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interesting -- I've done it about 100 times-- never been had a problem and I've never witnessed any "crime". Never been "checked for warrants" and even if I did they'd see I'm as clean as they come.
As a matter of fact I owned a dive shop in a business area in down town Riverside (a major city in California) and NEVER had any problems there, no crime for sure LOL-- After dark those business strips roll up the sides walks as a matter of fact.

To each his own though, I chose not to fear-- have fun.
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Old 09-23-2010, 11:29 AM   #5
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Were lucky to have campgrounds close by.
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Old 10-06-2011, 08:48 PM   #6
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JP, We hink the same way, check this site out...http://www.cheaprvliving.com/howtoconvertavan.html
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Old 11-28-2011, 10:48 AM   #7
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JP, I'm new to the JOF and found this thread as I was exploring the forum. I found the title of the thread intersting and it sounds like a decent idea. Wife and I will be traveling to FL in March for Spring Break and we will need to stop overnight along the way. This might be a good alternative to a rest stop or Walmart. You have peaked my curiosity and I will be keeping an eye out along the way. Thanks for the info.
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Old 11-28-2011, 11:32 AM   #8
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We went cross country this summer and we targeted RV lots -- we stopped at 6 across the country for over-night rests. It was great! Most of the lots they had security guys driving around and I'd tell them we were going to sleep in the trailer and wait for the parts department, or the lot to open in the morning. Every single lot was fine with us staying there overnight. Ended up spending some cash at each store, and we still came out ahead.
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:54 PM   #9
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I have done this in our truck camper many times. I put limo tint on all the windows and made heavy curtains for the windows also so that when closed at night no light from inside the camper would shine through. One of my favorite spots is hotel parking lots. Nobody knows for sure if your a guest or not. I would just arrive late hop in the camper and no one is the wiser.
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:52 PM   #10
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I like that-- never really thought of that-- thanks!
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