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Things That go Bump in the Night

We’re staying in a very pretty, heavily wooded RV park in Burnaby, BC. The first site we choose backed onto a busy road and was way too loud. On the second day, we moved deeper into the park and chose a spot next to a walking trail. This may not have been a good idea.

Unlike most, we chose a spot that doesn’t have room for us to park our truck next to it.

Burnaby RV siteIt’s lovely and green with a nice lawn for Lucy, hedges on the side for privacy and has several 30-foot high Rhododendrons.

RV camping in Burnaby, BC

Two nights ago we were startled at 4 am by a loud pounding on our door. It was pouring rain and very dark in our little corner of the campground. My husband called through the door, asking what they wanted. A man’s voice yelled that our neighbor Jim had had an accident and needed help.

Seriously? My husband asked what they expected us to do about it… then suggested they call the police. We assume when they heard my husband say “call the police” they thought he was telling me to call because they took off running, fast.

Rv camping in Burnaby, BC

We were spooked and it took a long time to fall back to sleep. The following day we bought this.

Air Horn to feel safe while RVing

Being in a trailer rather than a Class A or Class C means we have no access to our horn which could alert people if there was trouble. My daughter suggested we also get Bear Spray so we may buy that too.

Burnaby RV site

This is our first experience feeling vulnerable while RVing. It wasn’t serious but reminded us that we’re more susceptible here than at home.

Now for some retail therapy…I could use some.

There are amazing sales going on this weekend if you’re so inclined. I ordered 2 sale items this week, but of course, can’t wear them until we get home next month.

Ann Taylor is offering an extra 40% off with the code SHOP40.

Loft is offering an extra 40% off, no code needed.

Macy’s is offering an extra 20% off with the code CUTE or SUPER

Lord & Taylor is offering an extra 30% off with the code FRIENDS.

Bloomingdales is offering 25% off with the code MAINEVENT.


Do you RV or camp? Has something like this spooked you before?

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Affiliate links may generate income for AWSL.





  1. Jennifer – you might consider installing a motion activated light on your trailer and if a motion activated camera is available it might be worth the expense – I know wildlife would trigger both of these but your peace of mind might make it worth it Stay safe and enjoy your travels.

    1. Good idea, Brenda. I’d rather put up with wildlife triggering it in order to have it light up unwelcome people with nefarious intentions.

  2. We have had a couple of scary encounters in our 40 some years of RVing but only two that were really unsettling. One many years ago where guns were involved and then once when we “overnighted” in a Walmart parking lot, someone came to the door asking for money and really didn’t want to take no for a answer. We never open the door at night. You did the right thing.

    1. Guns are terrifying Bonna!! We’ve stayed in a Walmart parking lot before and it feels rather isolated. After 40 years you know all the tricks! We’re learning.

      1. We find that Sam’s club is a better choice for overnight and churches are wonderful overnight stops when traveling late and leaving early. If someone is around we always ask and give them a donation for the church.

  3. Wasp spray can be used as a deterrent. You need t o get the kind that shoots 25 feet…….juuust in case.

  4. The horn is a good idea; most intruders would be put off by attention you’d be drawing with that blast!

    You might want to reconsider the bear spray, though. The product IS legal in Canada, but only when used as a last resort on an attacking bear in the wilderness. Spraying people with bear spray, or any kind of product designed for personal protection against human attack, is strictly prohibited by the Canadian Criminal Code. You might find yourself being charged by the police for using the spray even if you maintained it was to dissuade an intruder. As well, bear spray is very potent and can cause severe problems for the user if used improperly in confined spaces.

    We’ve camped for years in isolated areas with no problems, but we’ve always been more cautious in urban areas. Usually it’s just teenagers making a nuisance of themselves after having too much to drink, but it can be unsettling. Serious incidents are pretty rare, though, so it was most likely just someone trying see if your trailer was empty. A blast from a horn would definitely answer that question.

  5. So glad you and your husband are safe, Jennifer! I am glad he had the foresight to not open the door. May the rest of your trip be uneventful and relaxing.

  6. A few years ago, we travelled south in our RV through California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. The California state parks were almost empty, so we did feel a little vulnerable. A camper moved in next to us with two men. While sitting out by a fire to stay warm and still enjoy the outdoors, they came over to talk. I can’t put my finger on what made us nervous, but we were. I believe our dog kept us safe that night. We always carry bear spray and a bat while travelling and never open the door to strangers. I hope you put that incident behind you and enjoy the rest of your vacation.

    1. I’ve learned to listen to my intuition about that stuff. It sounds like yours served you well, Joanna. Empty campgrounds feel much more dangerous than full ones.

    2. RV lifestyle fulltime for 5 years, always kept the vehicle keys close by, also a small bat, and spray. Never had a problem, I guess we were lucky.

  7. Yikes! Smart thinking to be cautious and not open your door. We’ve camped for years…but never had a scary “person” issue….just bears. Stay safe and have a wonderful adventure. Let me know if you’re coming back down the coast and want to stop in Gig Harbor. BTW are you shopping in Canada with American dollars? The value is great. Thank you for all your fun stories and shopping tips.

  8. Jennifer…..we are RVing too….we have been on the road for 3 weeks and have seen lots of beautiful things. Have had a few pitfalls too. Our air-conditioner is not keeping up and with this heat wave, we’ve had to re-route our trip. Travel safe.

  9. Jennifer
    Did you check the next day to see if a neighbor may have needed help? Just wondering? I would have done the same thing that night but checked with campers later.

    1. We did check. They were all fine but the neighbor right next to us remembers his dog barking his head off at 4am. Of course Lucy slept through the whole thing! We think it was someone hoping to burglarize what they thought was an empty trailer.

  10. Good morning! Here’s hoping it doesn’t rain much if at all…skies are looking a bit iffy at the moment.
    Oakridge Mall is one of my favs. I’m heading there today…good variety.
    The Ladner Market starts for the season tomorrow. It is always excellent, wide variety of vendors and the shops are open too. You might ask your daughter if she could take you there…
    I wish we could connect then I could tell you more.
    Cheers, Marjorie

    1. Thank you for the suggestions Marjorie! I did see a sliver of blue skies this morning so I have my fingers crossed too. The Ladner Market sounds interesting. I’ll ask her about it. It would be very fun to connect!!

    2. I’m going out at 10 tomorrow morning with a dear friend. Of course if I saw you, I would recognize you right away. Too, I would recognize your daughter. Let me know if you are going, just let me know and I’ll keep an eye out. Too, I always pop into South Coast Casuals, a family owned women’s wear shop…????????????
      Cheers, Marjorie

      1. We are heading east tomorrow. Looking forward to seeing some of the beautiful countryside. It’s funny to think you would recognize me but I guess that makes sense:).

  11. How upsetting to have this issue while on vacation in a peaceful spot.

    Good idea about that blaster.

    You may have an issue crossing the border, either direction, with the bear spray as I believe it is a prohibited item. They may sell a smaller, similar device that people use for defence against problem dogs though I don’t recall if these are also restricted.

    Wishing you a safe and enjoyable continued journey.

    1. It was scary, Julie! I thought pepper spray was prohibited in Canada but curious because they sell this larger version as Bear Spray =:-O. We’ll see if they ask at the border. I know they always ask about guns and gifts. If they don’t ask we won’t say.

  12. Jen – the only time we have been frightened while camping in our RV was in Alaska. We were staying at a campground that was well-populated and the RVs were pretty packed in. Our next-door neighber had a dog that barked non-stop when the owners were gone. It was really irritating and LOUD. My husband went over to talk to them about it when they got back to their RV. The man threatened to fight/pull a gun and “use it” on my husband. That was special…we were glad to get out of there the next day.

    1. Wow, Barbara!! That’s the kind of thing that drives you crazy and scares you. Nut jobs everywhere but I prefer to avoid the the aggressive ones…with guns. Glad you left right away. I might have insisted we leave that night 🙂

  13. My husband likes to camp where there are no other people. There was a time that he left me and our dog in an empty campsite on the Olympic Peninsula while he went to get some supplies at the store. I heard some movement in the bushes and decided that dog and I should wait up by the road. I wonder what was going on at your campsite. The bear spray is a great idea. Enjoy your stay and I hope that we don’t get any more rain.

    1. My husband leaves me in the trailer too, while he runs errands!! Very smart of you to not hang around to find up. Bear spray for sure. The Olympic peninsula is so pretty!

  14. Just glad you are safe Jennifer. That is scary! The bear spray is a great idea. I love it up there and am so jealous…be safe my friend.

  15. Looking for a horn while camping you can always use your vechicle keys alarm, very effective anywhere.

    1. Oh heavens, Diane, of course you’re right! That never occurred to me. My husband reminds me that our truck was parked 100’s of yards away. I don’t think it would have worked from that distance.

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