If there is one thing my family and I have learned from taking many camping trips over the years, it is how to handle the raccoons. Those little sneaky suckers are quite clever and if you have never had an encounter with them while camping, you are lucky thus far. However, there will come a time, if you camp often, when you will encounter the coons and if you aren’t prepared, they will eat your food and shred your tent. Allow me to offer you some tips and tricks on how to deal with raccoons while camping.
Never Leave Food in Your Tent – Whatever you do, don’t leave food in your tent. Even if it is a small bag of chips, get it out. Coons have an amazing sense of smell and they will shred your tent to pieces to get to that food. Even if you are inside the tent sleeping, you will have company if you leave food in there.
Don’t Hang Your Food from Tree Limbs – Hanging your food from tree limbs is a good idea to keep bears from getting your food, but those sneaky little raccoons will simply walk out on the limb and have a feast on your food.
Place All Food in a Plastic Tote – If you want to keep the raccoons out of your food, you need to place it in a plastic tote with a lid. You also need to find something really heavy to put on the lid like a block to keep them from opening the lid.
Don’t place light items on the tote because they can move those and get the tote open to access your food. You should also place the tote on the ground so they can’t push the tote off the table and spill all your food out.
Put Coolers in Your Vehicle – Before you walk away from the camp spot or go to sleep for the night, place your cooler in your vehicle. Those little sneaky sucker will open your cooler and get your food if you have any in there.
Last but not least is to always watch your back. One night we was sitting around the campfire eating and there were coons right behind us. Some of these coon in campgrounds are fed and therefore are not afraid of people, so they will come right up to you and almost take the food out your hand. All of these tips are from personal experience.