Popular naturists places, like clothing optional beaches and skinny-dipping rivers, sometimes attract a creature who only wants to leer at naked people. These creatures are humans (or at least look like humans) and they are easy to spot in spite of their attempts to blend in. That’s because they are clothed and staring at the naked people.
Now if you’re one of these creatures, stop right here because the rest of this post may hurt your feelings. Also, stop acting like a moron when you see naked people. Be respectful and not a perv. Maybe even take off your clothes and be social.
This article is a field guide for amateur naturists who want to be more knowledgeable about the creatures that inhabit their surroundings. For simplicity I’ll use the pronoun “he” when describing these people because, let’s face it, they’re all dudes.
Now I do not mean to imply that all single guys are like this. In fact, most single male nudists we’ve met are respectful, sociable and behave themselves. Which can’t always be said about some of the married males. Too often, single men are discriminated against at nudist resorts and gatherings, I believe in part because of the actions of one creeper.
There are three categories of lookie-loos who are attracted to your favorite naturist place: Gawkers, Lurkers and Creeps. Let’s dissect each of them (please!).
I don’t know if The Gawker actually thinks that people don’t see him, but he acts like it. Which is funny, because he’ll show up at a nude beach wearing long pants, a long sleeve shirt and shoes, when all other clothed visitors are in swimsuits and flip flops. He brings no towel or any other items that most humans bring for a day outside.
He further tries to “blend in” by sitting back from the crowd with his arms wrapped around his knees. And then, thinking he’s invisible, he stares.
One day at Blind Creek Beach, a man started shore fishing in the middle of a bunch of nude sunbathers. He was fully clothed and looked uncomfortably warm. We watched as he cast his line out into the surf, then turned his back to the sea and gaped at the sunbathers.
We thought this was an unusual way to fish. Perhaps, by turning your back to the sea, you fool the fish into thinking that you’re not paying attention. Then, just as the fish is about to strike, you whip around and pull that sucker in!
But if that’s a legitimate technique, Mr. Inconspicuous was not good at it because the entire time he fished he never turned back around to face the ocean. Until some Beach Ambassadors walked over and had a chat with him.
Sometimes it’s not naturists who confront The Gawker. Years ago, our favorite naturist hangout was Tanque Verde Canyon, east of Tucson, Arizona. We’d follow a half-mile trail past a rocky overlook, then descend steeply to the canyon bottom to a sandy area called The Beach.
One time we were sunbathing on The Beach when a man hiking down the trail sat on a boulder a few hundred feet away and proceeded to stare at everyone. We stared back, but he didn’t flinch because of course he’s invisible! Then a woman appeared on the rocky overlook above and started screaming at him in Spanish. He jumped up and ran up the trail, no doubt trying to figure out how to explain to his wife why he left her sitting in the car.
Oh boy, The Lurker sure is sneaky, blending in behind rocks or bushes like he’s on a special ops mission. What he doesn’t realize is that he’s not actually “blending in.” Experienced naturists know exactly what he’s up to, trying to get a peek of the elusive boobs, buttocks and bollocks that are missing from his life.
Inexperienced naturists might momentarily mistake him for a lost hiker, stuck in the brush or boulders, and helpfully point out the location of the trail. Not expecting this, The Lurker bounds away like a frightened deer.
Some Lurkers use distance to hide their spying. Again, oh clever Lurker, we see you! You may be far away, but not so far that we don’t see those binoculars stuck to your face.
Another time a group of us were lounging around on the Beach in Tanque Verde Canyon when we spotted a man sitting on the rocky overlook above. He was staring at us through binoculars that were BIG.
“How big?” you ask. Really big. So big that astronauts could see them from space. Using SMALLER binoculars.
Anyway, our friend Todd immediately ran up the trail to the overlook — naked — to confront the guy. He told The Lurker to please stop because he was making the women uncomfortable. But, Todd added, the man was welcome to come down and join us.
That did it. The man stood up and fled. Problem solved.
There’s a fuzzy line between The Gawker, The Lurker and The Creep. That’s because The Creep may also be lurking and gawking. Conversely, Gawkers and Lurkers can certainly act like Creeps.
But Creeps take things one, creepy step further. They might be lurking in the bushes, taking the idea of self-love too far. Or, as happened to us once at — again — the Tanque Verde Beach, they try to get right in your business.
We were the only two sitting at The Beach when a single man showed up and started talking to us. He seemed friendly and normal and we even shared some of our grapes with him. I walked into the bushes to take a pee and when I returned, he was gone. Apparently, in that brief moment, he asked J if we were interested in a threesome.
“Why of course we do!” she told him. Actually, she didn’t say that, and instead told Mr. Penthouse Forum that he needed to leave. Immediately. Which he did. (And to think, we had shared grapes with him!)
And that’s the thing about Creeps. They don’t care if they’re being creepy. So, call them out. Call the cops if you feel threatened. Take a photo of them. Let them know they are not welcome.
I realize that many people who are considering naturism are worried about Lurkers, Gawkers and Creeps. The fact is, in our many years of clothing-optional experience these stories are much more of the exception. But we’re going to call them out nonetheless. Because they’re being idiots.
Have any other tips for dealing with these guys? Let us know in the comments.
The Speakerphone Videographer – This guy strolls the beach and converses with an imaginary friend on speakerphone despite the roar of the surf. He holds the phone at an odd angle as he videos unsuspecting nudies. Easy to spot ‘em though.
Yes, that’s a good one. They are lucky their phones don’t end up in the surf. So is that a sub-species of The Lurker?
I think I encountered binocular guy years ago. The friend who introduced me to the place warned me about him. She had already been going up there for years and called him “Mr. Peepers.” I don’t see this sort of behavior as much there anymore. Or, maybe they’ve gotten better about hiding.
I’ve seen a few of them up there over the years. Also, a friend once saw a photo of us somewhere on a website that was taken from the overlook. We were barely recognizable, so no big deal.
Just found you guys, sorry I’m late (I’m in my 60’s). Great descriptions, and post for the unknowing of the differences between the 3 types of “trick O treaters” you may meet in naturism peppered with a sense of humor like your other posts. Thanks to for mentioning Beach ambassadors. There a good addition to modern comfort at a Freebeach and there’s not enough of them.
Looking forward to writing in 2020
There definitely should be more free beaches. Thanks for commenting and glad you’re enjoying the posts.
Jim & Becky
For a long time, we’d get peepers, lurkers, etc., on the cliffs overlooking Bonny Doon beach north of Santa Cruz. We still get a few, but it’s almost rare now. Anyway, we (the regulars at the beach) bought a bunch of cheap plastic mirrors to blast the sun back into their faces.
Love that idea!