How to Sneak Around at Night

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Nighttime is a fun time to sneak around, but if you have a roommate or a person who shares your room, here are some tips to get by them.


    1. First scan the area with deep breathing, so if anyone is around they will think you're asleep. Also plan and think.
    2. If you have a creaky bed, move slowly with patience; what's five minutes of slow steady moving compared to the whole night off!
    3. Map out all of the creaky floors and objects, these are the things that give you away.
    4. Walk at a slow and steady pace, again mapping out the creaky floors. Once you are where you need to be, slowly do what you need to do (especially if it involves taking something from someone).
    5. Keep your ears perked up; if there is someone upstairs and you hear moving or the floor creaking -- hide!
    6. Walk as close to the edge of each wall for creaking floors or stairs. Worn floor boards generally have more support near walls.
    7. Always act as if someone is actively looking for you, even if they aren't. This will subconsciously force you to be more careful.
    8. Remain in a crouched position as you're moving, and have your hands out to the sides at waist level to detect any obstacles you might have not seen and keep balance, and to absorb the step when you move forward by crouching a little further down into the step. You do not want to crouch below a 90 degree angle at any moment unless you are crouching to the ground to put a knee down or lying down, because it is very hard on the knees.
    9. Learn how to walk. Your footwork is just as important as crouching into the steps to absorb the movement. Normal heel-to-toe rolling movement is great for fast speed movement on grass and very slow movement on hard surfaces. Keep in mind that the slower you move, the more silent you are.
        • When moving through leaves, or trying to remain absolutely silent, keep your weight on your back foot, extend your leading foot, and to set it down and slowly shift forward, absorbing the movement in your knees and ankles. You should only have the ball of your foot, which will work as a cushion, make contact with the ground during this type of movement.
        • If you're maneuvering in an environment that provides "Noise Cover" or if there is a medium risk of being heard, lower your heel to the ground to touch when switching weight to the lead foot.
        • Use the flat foot when walking across gravel or across anything in which many small objects can be disturbed and make noise. Absorb the step as you normally would, but you let your entire foot make contact with the gravel at the same time to let the weight distribute evenly. Slow to very slow movement should be used.
    10. Get the right equipment. The only really essential piece of equipment is an alert mind. Helpful items are pretty much tailored to the situation.
        • Ropes or a grappling hook are always nice if you are going to be climbing trees.
        • Leather gloves help when climbing to protect your hands, so they aren't a bad idea.
        • Clothing is situation-sensitive. It is always a good idea to stay in the shadows, so black or dark blue is a good color for shadows. Camo for the type of environment you are in is even better because in the shadow it looks black, and when in minor light you can blend in with trees, bushes or grass. You also don't want to wear clothes that make noise.
        • The type of shoes you wear should reflect how far along you are in your stealth training. If you are just beginning, soft shoes with light rubber coating on the bottom is the best. As you become better, you can wear normal shoes, and eventually boots that have soft rubber on the bottom.
    11. Stay alert. One of your worst enemies is the surprise factor. Being caught off-guard can not only startle you, but cause you to make noise or lose control of the situation. The best way to know if someone is coming is to see them; if you can't see them, hearing them is the second best way to know in advance. Most people do not walk quietly, so you can hear them coming. When in sight range of someone you may be able to wait for an opportunity to hide better if you have not. Slow movement is possible when you are in someone's sight range. Once they come in audible range of you, movement should not continue, and you must maintain absolute stillness. If you are within arm's reach of the person walking towards you, freeze. If you aren't perfectly hidden, holding still will normally take care of the dilemma, but if you can manage, curl up into a ball and try to cover your shoulder features and your head; this will hide the human outline.
    12. Know how to escape. Normally when you are escaping, you have been discovered, and are making a mad dash to hide or get away. Disregard all stealth and just put distance between you and your discoverer so that you can hide once again and sneak away. If you don't think that you have been seen, you might want to try sneaking away as stealthily as possible. Then you can hide, wait for the threat to leave, and continue on doing whatever you were doing.


    • Monitor a sleeping person's breathing: Regular breathing means that the person is awake or is nearly awake! Shallow breathing means that person is lightly sleeping but you should still be careful! Snoring means deeper sleep but you should still take precautions.
    • Wear dark clothing (NO BLACK, AS IT DOES NOT BLEND IN, dark blue, etc.).
    • When you have found your hiding spot be sure not to move.
    • Be sure to hide either down low or up high. People don't look up high or down low.
    • Be sure not to hide in other people's yards unless you know them well.
    • Knowing the environment prior to sneaking around increases the chances of you remaining hidden. If you are in your own house, try to find out beforehand which stairs creak, etc. In general, stepping at one of the far ends of each stair instead of the center as you climb it can reduce noise.
    • When pulling a prank on a friend, it is normally fun to bring another friend along. Just make sure they understand what is going on, and know the way back in case you get split up. Whoever is better at stealth should be in front so as to detect possible threats earlier than the beginner would.
    • One of the best pranks is tapping on your friend's window to give them a bit of a scare.
    • Another great prank is shining flashlights into their room from the outside, especially if you have two red ones and are at a distance.
    • To remain hidden you may have to take routes which are out of the way.
    • When in recon work, pay attention to detail. If someone jogs by at four in the morning, they are probably doing it every day, so more than one day of recon may be necessary.
    • When sneaking up on someone, try to match your steps with theirs and avoid breathing heavily.
    • Video cameras provide undeniable proof of the funny face your friend made when you scared him/her, but they can also incriminate you later on.
    • Learning to make animal sounds will make people less suspicious if they hear you but will not always work.
    • If you ever have to jump over an object such as table or couch remember to land on the balls of your feet. If you do it right you'll land without a sound.
    • Also, if you need to jump over something, make sure that you land with your knees slightly bent and once you hit the ground bend your knees so you're in a position like you are going to ollie off a skateboard. (But do NOT jump.)
    • If you are going into an area you are not 100% secure with, ask around a bit, and if you just don't feel comfortable, plan around it. If you feel you must or should go through this area, it may be in your best interests to bring something to ward off somebody who may have harm intended, without calling the Police that is (That would result in a definite ban from leaving the house, not just as a rule, but for "your own safety.") I would not suggest an large weapon like a rod, wrench, hammer, or anything larger than your hand. Maybe a kitchen knife, fork or something discernible for a weapon in the dark that is easily concealable. If you are going to bring along an actual sharpened knife for protection, have it be some sort of utility blade that one might always carry around, and may be stored in a very, VERY discreet place (Like a large-ish Swiss army knife, or a Leatherman.)
    • DO NOT wear anything that has buttons or anything that jangles around.
    • If someone is looking a way you don't want them to then roll or throw a small distraction and make your move. Don't use a distraction if they are suspecting somebody is near.
    • If somebody says that they know you are there, don't give up.If they are not looking directly at you, they are probably just lieing. Try to remain as silent as possible, and sneak quietly away when the person is not looking.
    • If you see someone, it is best to get away as soon as possible, as people are usually more suspicious during the night.
    • If you need to hide, try going up. Climb a tree, hop onto a low roof, anything that puts you out of the normal line of sight of a person. If someone is looking for you, they will most probably be looking at the ground.
    • Always keep your back to a wall. When going up steps step on the sides, right by the base boards, so they don't creak
    • Go barefoot as it is far more discreet than wearing shoes and youll slip over if your wearing socks


    • Never use these things to do anything illegal.
    • DO NOT sneak around or play tricks at or near the homes of police officers or other people who own firearms. Policemen live with the knowledge that people they arrested will someday emerge from prison, often with a grudge. While your intentions may be benign, the person could easily perceive you as a threat and shoot you.
    • Do not do anything illegal; just play jokes on your friends and talk about it later. It's all about bragging rights anyway.
    • Don't do anything drastic like vandalism; most friends don't enjoy that.
    • Being caught could result in trouble with the police, especially if you are not good at this, or if your friend is extremely paranoid or doesn't catch on right away.
    • Humans are pretty good at knowing if something is sneaking around, which helps to protect us from those horrible beasties with fangs and claws. Walk silently, but normally, don't crouch over, and never, ever leap outside of ten feet from your target.
    • Avoid going on Private Property unless you personally know the resident. It's not only illegal, but the owner could have a firearm or a big dog ready if you are trespassing.
    • Don't go anywhere that you're likley to be attacked by a wild animal.

Things You'll Need

    • Flashlight(if person is a very deep sleeper.)
    • Silent communication gear (like spy gear toys)if with a friend.
    • Dark clothing for shadows (not black as it "cuts out" your silhouette in the dark, dark blue works best).
    • Camo clothing to match the environment if you plan on moving out of the shadows, the new digital camouflage works really well in the appropriate environment.
    • Shoes suitable to your level of skill in stealth (fencing shoes are quite good, ninja tabi work really well for sneaking and climbing.)
    • Gloves and a grappling hook for climbing
    • A friend who likes doing this too, because then it's even more fun
    • A disraction to roll or anything that would grab someones attention