June 29, 2016

Outdoor Community Question: Mice at the Campfire (toasting their own marshmallows)

"Who Me?"

As some of you may have noticed on your personal blogs, sometimes you become an online ‘authority’ on a topic without meaning too. Apparently, All Mighty Google has chosen us as the go-to ‘mice while camping’ experts…

I can trace back to the ‘why’ it’s happened here on the OBN in regards to Mice. It all started in the forum by a post The River Damsel made called, “Ok…Campers! How Do You Keep Mice Out…”

So in the spirit of being helpful, I started saving the search terms I saw over the last month thinking that if visitors come seeking advice, we as outdoors people should help them out.

Let’s look at the questions, queries, statements and searches that landed visitors on the OBN recently:

  • How to keep mice away when hiking
  • a mouse in my tent
  • how to keep mice away from your camp
  • I hate mice how to keep one away from me in the outdoors
  • Should you kill a mouse in your tent or try to trap it
  • Can you die from disease if a wild mice get in your camp trailer
  • mice in my tent
  • A wild mouse touched me outdoors will I be ok
  • chipmunks and mice invading while camping
  • should I throw away food that mice got into on our camping trip
  • how do mice get into tents

Now it’s your turn Outdoor Bloggers. Do you have answers for these questions? What do you do to keep mice away from your Outdoor experience? Have you had an unfortunate mouse experience like I once did? What’s your combat tactics to keep mice away plan?

Let’s hear what you got and help out others seeking some mouse proof camping advice….

About Rebecca

When Rebecca isn't running the Outdoor Blogger Network, she is off Fly Fishing her favorite rivers. Occasionally she writes about those adventures at The Outdooress.


  1. 1

    I’ll go first:

    I’ve learned that mice love dog food. Before I learned the lesson, I’d bring the actual bag the dog food came in. Sometimes I’d lean the bag up against a tree, or put it on a camp table etc, etc…It wouldn’t take long for mice to either climb a tree to get in the bag, or chew a hole in the bottom of the bag.

    Now I always bring my dogs food in a plastic container. I also dispose of any dog food my Golden can’t finish in one sitting. One less reason for the mice to come have a party at my camp ~

  2. 2

    I was flyfishing in Idaho with my Golden and no sooner did I put his food out by a rock did he have dining guest snacking on food with him. Plastic Tupperware is my thing too.

    Bearded Boar

  3. 3

    We had one jump into our car durring a picnic. It took over an hour to get it out. I can’t help much on how to get rid of them. Our tactic of yelling at it and poking it with a stick was not very effective.

    I can say that every time we have had problems with uninvited guests it has been because someone either did not clean up well or was trying to feed wildlife. Keep food in closed plastic contaners and don’t just drop scraps on the ground.

  4. 4

    I agree that food is usually what attracts them.

  5. 5

    A wild mouse touched me outdoors will I be ok

    LOL wow. That story is a classic. I’m very happy Google is blessing you with traffic as payment for your suffering. (:

  6. 6

    I looked at the questions again and I think I can answer a few.

    “how to keep mice away from your camp” – The same way you keep bears away: keep food and trash out of reach.

    “Should you kill a mouse in your tent or try to trap it” – Killing it could get messy. Lots of blood and fur. I recommend one of those cheap plastic live traps. Some can catch 4 or 5 mice in one setting and they are very effective. They also are safe around kids and pets. I use them at the school where I work. You can let them go a few miles from camp or throw the trap in a bucket of water.

    “Can you die from disease if a wild mice get in your camp trailer” – Can you? It is certainly possible, but not very likely. I read somewhere (can’t cite) that wilderness mice are not as diseased as city mice.

    “A wild mouse touched me outdoors will I be ok” – Yes

    “should I throw away food that mice got into on our camping trip” – YES!

    “how do mice get into tents” – The door usually. Although they can enter from a hole smaller than a dime.

    • 7

      Thank you, Tim…You hit the nail on the head with the last answer. It had to be the door to the tent. As I went out in the middle of the night and came back…it must have run in quickly or the zipper wasn’t completely secure. Ahhhh…. I have re-posted my story today in remembrance of the wonderful event.

  7. 8

    Mice and Camping

    It is all really a matter of perspective. One can await the next mouse episode with either expectancy or anxiety. As all long time campers know rodent encounters are always part of the deal. Just as Rebecca shared in her blog about her new very nice mummy sleeping bag test drive, without the mouse tickling her bare backside; and the ensuing scramble to escape her now confining mummy bag it would have been a pretty boring post about a ho-hum gear review. Her story reminded me of a tale Patrick McManus wrote about pretending to drop a cherry bomb fire cracker down the front of his uncles’ chest-waders and the resulting contortions of escaping the predicament. The piece was outdoor humor at its best and so was Rebeccas’ story.

    Rodents are often the antagonists that spark amazingly funny chapters in our outdoor adventures. So, if this is indeed true should we not invite these charming and cunning little pests to be part of our experiences.

    The National Park Service and other agencies has been very successful in creating a camping environment that has greatly reduced encounters with bears by enforcing regulations that discourage bear and human conflict over food. Mice are quite happy to settle for crumbs and not compete for the whole meal deal like the bears have a habit of doing. This “crumb” strategy once understood by the camper allows for a happy, often humorous symbiotic experience.

    As I said it is a matter of perspective. The rodents will be there invited or not, so like the weather we can choose to make the most of it, or not.

  8. 9

    This is hilarious! I’ve never had a problem with unwanted visitors to my tent but I also keep all food and toiletries in a separate location, locked up! Other than that, I love to see mice outdoors. We did a mark-recapture study in undergrad and I found out some mice would do anything for peanut butter!

  9. 10

    I was grouse hunting and sleeping next to me cook station and I woke up and had a mouse on my neck. This was my first mouse encounter of sorts, fore sure the first time i had one on my neck. I was just laying on the ground with a tarp over me, not what i would call mouse proof.

    Although i didn’t enjoy this much it was better than the night the porcupine tried to come snuggle with me in the middle of the night, don’t worry I escaped.

    Now where i live i get mice in my vehicles all the time, I let my hunting dogs loose to find them. When they go on point I start unscrewing things till I find the nest, works really great actually.

    Just remember no food…. no mice.

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