Barking at night
Firstly I'll point out that Charlie does sleep inside..... anyway, onto the gist of my post :P

So every day once the sun goes down Charlie will wait by the back door for extended periods wanting outside (either side of sleeping on our laps etc). Once let outside (we don't have a dog door yet) he will bolt outside at quick pace and charge down the driveway to the gate towards the front of the house barking like mad. He will sit there going crazy, sometimes bolting down the back again and then towards the front again. Eventually he wears himself out however with the barking getting slowly worse every night we don't let him do it very long before having to haul him inside.

Any ideas why he is so keen on getting outside at night? and why the constant barking? and what would be the best way of going about this?

During the day we usually leave the back door open for him as someone is usually home and he has no problem with the barking at all. We would leave the back door open in the evening also but with the barking getting worse once it is dark it is not an option at the moment.

Could it be the fear of the unknown as he can't see so much at night?