But the difference is that I am paying for one site for me to park one camper (That is smaller than some Motorhomes that retiree couples have) on for my one family. It is a group site, not an individual site. We are one group unit. When I go to the camp store I will gladly buy nine ice cream cones. But we also don't own 2 houses because we are a larger than average family. We buy one campfire's worth of firewood. Because we choose to live a little cozier than the average American's need for huge square footage shouldn't matter to anyone else. For hotels, the reason is for the fire marshall, but that is not an issue for renting a few square feet of ground. Are you going to start charging by the feet your camper is, or charge if a tenter has a a tent and a screen room? What does any of it matter if you stay within the boundaries of your camp site and don't disturb others? People are making assumptions about a large family that oftentimes aren't true. For example, our family of nine spends less on groceries than my single MIL or my single dad. We also would probably consume less electricity than the majority of flat screened, gps'ed, satellite TV'ing, high tech motorhome dwellers. Even though we have electric lights, we prefer out Coleman lanterns. Perhaps full-timers should have to pay double since they tax the system more than recreational campers? Or people who bring a pet should have to rent an extra site because pets take up a lot of square footage?
I don't think there should be any numerical qualification for renting a site, I think it should be behavior based. If you stay within your site and don't bother your neighbors, or cause problems, it shouldn't matter if you have one person or nine or if they are related to you or not. Rent the site and get rid of the nanny state. If the people on a site are a problem because of their behavior, get rid of them. Don't have discriminatory, intellectually dishonest rules.
You made the choice to have a large family, and that choice does have consequences. If a park chooses to allow only a certain number of people to be on each site, it is their choice. They don't have the right to object to your choice to have a large family, you really don't have the right to object to their choice of site occupancy limits. A site limit rule is a rule that I find very attractive, it means I will likely not be parked next to a circus (not necessarily your group, but many large groups are). Just because a policy doesn't meet your sensabilites, doesn't mean it is wrong.
* This post was
edited 04/06/12 12:41pm by bigdogger *
Camping Party Definition
Party size for one vehicle accessible campsite
One to four persons 16 years of age or older.
At least one member of the camping party MUST be 16 years or older.
A maximum of eight persons including children (15 years of age and younger).
Campsite Maximum is one camping party per site, unless otherwise authorized.
We don't have a large family, so this has never been an issue for us, but Yosemite's website used to say max.of 6 unless it's a nuclear family. They've changed the website and I can't find that exact statement anymore, but I'm sure it still applies. They also have double sites.
I'm sure this policy varies at different campgrounds. The best you can do is call ahead to be sure the campground does not have a strict 6 max. policy.
The Forest Service campgrounds that we have managed have all had an 8 person limit (Utah, Idaho, California and Oregon). I think most of the FS campgrounds are 8 but maybe that's just out west? Anyway, I haven't read all the posts here so I apologize if I am repeating someone else's post. But there is another reason to limit the number of people that has nothing to do with how polite or considerate you are. It has to do with "soil compaction". Compaction is an (oh, how I hate to use this term, lest I be mislabled) environmental concern; especially in "urban forests". It is an issue in heavily used campgrounds where the foot traffic and bicycle traffic compacts the soil so densly that nothing grows anymore. That is the reason you'll see rules for keeping bicycles on the pavement or roadways too. These urban forests also do not get a chance to replenish themselves with rotting forest debris as the campers tend to use up all the branches and twigs as kindling for campfires. As our campgrounds age and camping has increased in popularity, the compaction problem has become more evident.
So check out the Forest Service or USACE campgrounds in your area to see if the person-limits are larger. I believe they are. If you are in Texas, there are a lot of Corp parks and most have 8 person limits. I just found this website that might be helpful: http://www.publiclandjournal.com/tx/texas-public-lands