I follow a blog called RV Sue and Her Canine Crew. Sue is a full time RVer who spends her time camping in the western states. She is quite frugal when it comes to camping fees, staying in low cost BLM or forest service campsites, when not parked in the boondocks. Clinger is a term RV Sue uses now and then, I am not sure if she coined it or borrowed it from someone else, but it is appropriately descriptive. Her definition, “A Clinger is someone who crowds your camp when there are plenty of other campsites available.” Doing a little online research I also found the following description of the word Clinger from one of RV Sue’s followers,
“What is an RV Clinger??? Oh, just another RV’er. Except, one that “Clings” to another RV’er. In the RV world, there are many people who live full-time in an RV. They will often camp, or boon dock in or near BLM lands, National Forests, Parks, or even a Wal-Mart parking lot. If they are loners, or shall we say, if they want to be alone… you will most likely see them camped out in the distance, or tucked into a cove of trees. They are by themselves, without any other campers parked near them. They are alone, by choice. A “Clinger”, like I said, is another RVer who will arrive in the same area, the area can be 100,000 acres, or 1 acre and that new arrival will instantly migrate right over to park next to the existing one. They won’t bother to ask the existing camper if he/she minds that they impose and park next to them. Nope, they just move themselves right on in, and get right down to setting up their camp. This, folks, is what we call Clingers.”
I hadn’t had a lot of experience with Clingers until this past fall when my wife and I spent several weeks bookdocking through the red rock country of southeast Utah.
On three different occasions we had Clingers descend on our boondocking campsite even though there were literally thousands of nearby locations they could have chosen. One even showed up late at night, a good way to get yourself shot!
What I don’t understand is why do Clingers chose to cling?
Is it a safety in numbers mentality? Do they not want to camp by themselves? Do they think they are doing you a favor by becoming your neighbor?
Maybe they are too lazy to find / research their own campsite. They see your RV parked out there in the boonies and figure it must be okay, so they will just join you rather than head down the road and find their own.
If you know the answer, please share!
Attempting to understand Clingers, just another adventure in RVing!
Dave Helgeson’s many roles in the RV industry started before he even had a driver’s license. His grandparents and father owned an RV dealership before the term “RV” had been coined, and Dave played a pivotal role in nearly every position of an RV dealership. He and his wife Cheri launched their own RV dealership in the Pacific Northwest. The duo also spent 29 years overseeing regional RV shows. Dave has also served as President of a local chapter of the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA), worked on the board of advisors for the RV Technician Program of a local technical college, and served as a board member of the Manufactured Home and RV Association. Dave’s reputation earned him the title of “The foremost expert on boondocking,” bestowed by RV industry icon, the late Gary Bunzer (The RV Doctor). When he’s not out boondocking, you’ll find Dave in the spotlight at RV shows across the country, giving seminars about all things RVing. He and Cheri currently roam in their fifth travel trailer, with Dave doing all the service, repair and modifications to his own unit.