Camp Security Options?

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Lindsey83

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Traveler I

Hello!

We are looking at options for motion sensors/alarms that would alert us if something (bear, dog, sloth...) someone was approaching the tents between ours and our kids camping on our other Jeep.

Any recommendations on something you’ve used that has worked out?

Thanks!
 
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Polaris Overland

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We have been asked this a lot when we did our big trip 2017 for 8 months around Turkey, Europe, Scandinavia and North Africa and again when we travelled to Mongolia in 2018.
Crossing international borders makes carrying weapons other than a knife impossible. We live in a roof tent so I take a large knife in the tent with us and a large maglite torch. I am also in the process of fitting all round down lighting bright lights that can be turned on from the tent. People I know have done similar and found them a good deterrent when people are creeping around their vehicle.
Other than that we use common sense. If we can’t camp out of site we tend to go to the other extreme and camp in busier places and ask permission of farmers or land owners.
We have in all our travelling only had one difficult instance where we were handled by drunken Georgian / Armenians near the border. Stern words and then packing up and moving before they returned was all we could do.
 

RainGoat

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Bear Spray is a very effective area deterrent. It’s the shotgun of pepper sprays. We also sleep with a small marine air horn & carry small personal alarms. We have these for wildlife but they would also be good intruder deterrents & typically pose no legal or border issues. I like the idea motion sensing of lights as well.

B A S U eAlarm
https://www.basu.com/store/p1/B_A_S_U_eAlarm®_(City_Use).html
 
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Roam_CO85

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Hello!

We are looking at options for motion sensors/alarms that would alert us if something (bear, dog, sloth...) someone was approaching the tents between ours and our kids camping on our other Jeep.

Any recommendations on something you’ve used that has worked out?

Thanks!
Here in Colorado we have a huge transient problem and they can camp in the national forests and they try todo alot in wooded areas around urban areas but the forest causes issues for other campers plus some wildlife issues. The human type of prowlers scare me more than the bears. dont worry to much about the bears to much. They are alot of times just trash pandas. There is the methode the guy had with blanks and trip wires but that has alot more cons than pros.

I have done alot of packing in the backcountry with horses. And always carried bells and twin to string up while sleeping and if someone or something trips or brushes up on that twin those bells ring and Its a wake up call that something is out of place. The poppers can have a huge negative effect if someone is armed and thinks they are being shot at. But will definitely wake you up!! I normally dont go anywhere that I cant carry my concealed carry with me but if I cant. Its bear spray or a big stick!!

They always say not scared just prepared. If there is alot of bear sign Ill try to find another spot. If there is alot of trash or you see a camp that someone might be living there. I find another spot. Have heard some horror storys about transient interactions and most of them are uselly on something or getting into something and causing problems
 

Jrahn0822

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I would start out by strategically parking where both tents are facing each other and as close as possible. If that is not an option you could easily run twine and bells like mentioned. Something that can easily be used as a weapon that most people don't think about is a flashlight. If you get one of those maglites that take multiple D batteries they are stout. Otherwise shovels and such close to your tent are great. Whistles/walkies/horns are all great to make noise and alert others as well.
 

Vin

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Bring a dog (or two)... best early warning system ever designed.

I sleep in a roof top tent with my wife and kid and always have my Jeep's key fob easily accessibly. Press the panic button - between the lights and car horn most things (two legged or four) will be out of there.
 

rzims

Rank IV

Contributor III

We usually have our dog which alerts us if anything/anyone is going on. Our concern is that when we camp, we like to hike which means we're away from our camp for a good part of the day. We haven't had any issues yet, we try to be aware of who is camping in the area and if it appears sketchy, we'll make other plans.
Like someone else said, not really concerned about wildlife, it's more the 2 legged variety I don't trust. Does seem like there are more and more people living in some areas instead of just camping
 
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Roam_CO85

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We usually have our dog which alerts us if anything/anyone is going on. Our concern is that when we camp, we like to hike which means we're away from our camp for a good part of the day. We haven't had any issues yet, we try to be aware of who is camping in the area and if it appears sketchy, we'll make other plans.
Like someone else said, not really concerned about wildlife, it's more the 2 legged variety I don't trust. Does seem like there are more and more people living in some areas instead of just camping
Thats more of a problem I think of too. If I am gonna be away from camp for more than a few hours it normally gets packed up and locked up in the bed of the truck. Normally just stay around the camp to sleep eat and keep moving. I see fishermen and hunters leave a ground tent or a camper for hours and have always thought of the what if. Because you are right. This day and age you dont know and you cant trust anyone.

My recommendation is don’t leave anything valuable where its easy to get to. Take the stuff that is valuable with you. Granted a 2 hundo stove is heavy to take hiking. But that stove is cheaper than a wallet full of CC or ID and cash. I thought of using a game camera....where if something comes up missing you can take a photo of the person to the authorities. Granted you put it somewhere that someone cant see it. But broad day light no one is gonna notice it on a dark tree or a pile of rocks. Ive seen guys have lock boxes in their rigs to where the truck can blow up and the boxes be untouched.

We have had a huge out break of people breaking into vehicles at trailheads. I always have a couple of weapons in my truck and keep it locked up pretty tight. Hate leaving it at an area that ill be away from it thats unknown to me for a few hours. If i do it normally gets taken out. The game camera or a dash cam of a car parked in the area cant mitigate the problem but if something goes missing its evidence.
 

Polaris Overland

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Thats more of a problem I think of too. If I am gonna be away from camp for more than a few hours it normally gets packed up and locked up in the bed of the truck. Normally just stay around the camp to sleep eat and keep moving. I see fishermen and hunters leave a ground tent or a camper for hours and have always thought of the what if. Because you are right. This day and age you dont know and you cant trust anyone.

My recommendation is don’t leave anything valuable where its easy to get to. Take the stuff that is valuable with you. Granted a 2 hundo stove is heavy to take hiking. But that stove is cheaper than a wallet full of CC or ID and cash. I thought of using a game camera....where if something comes up missing you can take a photo of the person to the authorities. Granted you put it somewhere that someone cant see it. But broad day light no one is gonna notice it on a dark tree or a pile of rocks. Ive seen guys have lock boxes in their rigs to where the truck can blow up and the boxes be untouched.

We have had a huge out break of people breaking into vehicles at trailheads. I always have a couple of weapons in my truck and keep it locked up pretty tight. Hate leaving it at an area that ill be away from it thats unknown to me for a few hours. If i do it normally gets taken out. The game camera or a dash cam of a car parked in the area cant mitigate the problem but if something goes missing its evidence.
Sadly trail heads, touristy areas, hotel car parks and even our dive sites etc etc are all susceptible to light fingered two legged crooks.
Our Landy has rear grills on windows, padlocks on doors in addition to the existing locks and steel lockable cubby box.
When travelling and looking for a hostel / hotel Angela looks at facilities.
I look at the car park and is it secure. I also always try to get a room overlooking the Landy.
Paranoid, yes but having heard so many stories of overlanders being broken into I feel justified.
I do not have an overlanding friend who has been attacked by a wild animal or have a wild animal break into their vehicle and steal their wallet or camera equipment.
Sad view of reality in this day and age. Too many people think it’s ok to take what you worked hard to buy because they don’t want to have to work hard.
 

RainGoat

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Just for perspective, even when the police have a video of someone stealing your car, they rarely want to look at it. Also, theft is time immemorial, we only hear about it more because there’s more people & easier ways to spread the info.
 
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Quicksilver

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Lots of good suggestions. In addition, you might consider some type of motion triggered light. I have a pair of these. I put one on each side of my rig, so if someone or something approaches it, they get lit up. If you consider these, keep in mind that results vary and these shouldn't be thought of as a primary deterrent, just an added level. Some critters won't care. Also, I don't stay in campgrounds often, but when I do, I don't use these so as not to annoy the neighbors every time some random raccoon or jack rabbit wanders through.
 

RainGoat

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Lots of good suggestions. In addition, you might consider some type of motion triggered light. I have a pair of these. I put one on each side of my rig, so if someone or something approaches it, they get lit up. If you consider these, keep in mind that results vary and these shouldn't be thought of as a primary deterrent, just an added level. Some critters won't care. Also, I don't stay in campgrounds often, but when I do, I don't use these so as not to annoy the neighbors every time some random raccoon or jack rabbit wanders through.
I have those on my deck back in the woods. Never thought about them for the truck. Nice idea
 

MEU(SOC)

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Rotating firewatch shifts with challenge/password, set perimeter wire to direct ingress points into machine gun interlocking fields of fire (fatal funnel), set demo charges and claymores, set trip flares, designate call for fire grid coordinates/call signs for indirect fire, have a CAS mission plan, etc.

Okay, maybe not that extreme. I’m armed wherever I camp and I have a plan for confronting/identifying possible threats in darkness. Sometimes using terrain features and trees/bushes to your advantage helps. Lock up food and get it off the ground in bear country. Lock vehicle. Secure valuables. Talk with your group about it. Make some simple plans. If a bear attacks or suspects attack...do you shelter in a vehicle? Do you leave in a vehicle? Do you run to a rally point? Do you fight? Talk about it. Be prepared. Do you have a firearm? Are you trained with it? Is your wife or GF? Your buddy?