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Introduction to Boondocking Essentials For RV’s
Boondocking is a great way to experience RVing and free camping outdoors without having to rely on full electric and sewer hookups. However, dry camping can be difficult if you don’t have the important boondocking essentials. To help make your next boondocking adventure more enjoyable, here are some tips, hacks, and boondocking gear that will make dry camping much easier!
What Is Boondocking or Dry Camping?
Dry camping or boondocking is when RV travelers camp off-grid and stay in locations where there are no hookups to water, electricity, and sewer. This means you don’t have access to water, showers, toilets, etc. Dry camping can be a great way to save money as it doesn’t cost nearly as much as full-hookup camping but depending on where you go, it can be difficult, and having the right boondocking essentials can make your trip much easier!
Advantages To Boondocking or Dry Camping
There are many advantages to dry camping or boondocking, including that it can be much cheaper than full-hookup locations. Plus, if you’ve never tried it before but always wanted to see what all of the fuss is about, this is a great way to try something new without having to rely on hookups.
You may be able to see places and views that you otherwise may miss if you are staying at full hookup locations. And, not relying on water and sewer connections, can also help to reduce your carbon footprint as well!
Where Can You Boondock?
While boondocking is often associated with remote, undeveloped locations away from cities and towns, you can also find places to dry camp right in the heart of some great vacation spots.
There are many National Parks that offer camping without hookups or little access to amenities. There are also BLM (Bureau of Land Management) areas available for camping where you can get away from it all and enjoy the great outdoors. And, finally, if you want to stay in a place that offers dump stations for your RV’s waste tanks, there are even some state parks that allow boondocking!
Are There Any Apps You Can Use To Find Boondocking Sites?
There are many apps that you can use to find boondocking locations. Some of the most popular include AllStays, Campendium, and iOverlander. These will give you a wide variety of camping options in various areas around the US – both developed campgrounds with amenities as well as undeveloped dry camping sites where restrooms or dump stations may be miles away.
There are many boondocking sites in the US that offer varying degrees of amenities, so it’s important to know what is available at each location before planning your trip!
Boondocking Essentials: Important Camping Gear You Need For Dry Camping
Once you’ve found a location for your dry camping trip, it’s important to have the right RV boondocking essentials.
While most of these items (boondocking gear) may be similar in nature to what you bring with you on full-hookup sites, there are some key differences that need to be considered when dry camping or boondocking.
For example, if you are going to a place where there is no water available for your RV, it might be helpful to bring along some type of portable tank or container that will allow you to carry the necessary amount of fresh drinking water with you until you can get back on-grid and fill up at a local tap.
If you’re boondocking in an undeveloped area, you’ll also want to have some way of dealing with your own waste until you can find a dump station or other means for removing it.
Solar power can be an essential RV boondocking tool for staying off-grid. Solar panels not only help you to generate electricity but also provides hot water and even heats up your RV during the day so that at night it’s nice and cozy inside!
Portable solar panels are another great product available for RVers to purchase to gain access to solar power for their dry camping experiences. It can be a great power source to fuel battery power, produce heat, and give an extra power source for boondocking while taking up little storage space.
Folding Camp Tables:
Having a folding camp table is great for cooking outside, setting up a picnic area, or even just enjoying playing cards with family and friends.
Avoid dead batteries! Using Lithium-Ion batteries have many advantages over the traditional lead-acid battery. They are longer-lasting, much safer, and don’t require as much maintenance. They have a. much larger battery capacity than traditional RV batteries. These can be a very useful upgrade for boondocking because they are lighter, last longer, and don’t produce as much heat.
You may need a generator when boondocking if you don’t have solar panels in place. If you are dry camping without hookups, it’s likely that your RV won’t have electricity for lights or appliances if your batteries run down during the night. A portable generator is an essential part of any boondocker’s gear so they can stay connected to their electronic devices and enjoy all the comforts of home. How much power you need greatly depends on the size of your RV and how many appliances you plan to power.
Fresh Water Bladder:
Still Life Water Bladder
Having a freshwater bladder for dry camping is really helpful. This makes it possible to have access to an unlimited supply of clean drinking water without having to haul heavy jugs or bottles around with you everywhere you go. It also frees up space in your RV so that if the spigot isn’t available at your site, you won’t have to lug around gallons of freshwater.
- This is in addition to your RV’s freshwater tank.
Water Filtration System:
A Berkey water filtration system can be very helpful when dry camping. This system makes it possible to get clean drinking water from natural sources like rivers, streams, and even puddles! It completely filters water using a three-step process of sediment filtration, microfiltration, and ultra-violet disinfection.
Cell Signal Booster:
Having a cell booster for boondocking will help you to keep better signals and make it easier to communicate with friends, family, or emergency services. It helps by using the strongest towers available in your area so that you can have reliable service even when surrounded by natural obstacles like mountains or hills.
Water-Saving Shower Head:
It is important to conserve as much water as possible while boondocking. Having a low-flow showerhead or hand sprayer for your camping trips can help you to save water when dry camping.
A solar shower is an additional option.
Collapsible Basin for Washing Dishes:
Having a collapsible basin to wash your dishes when dry camping is extremely helpful. This way, you can put all of your dirty dishes in there and wash with as little water as possible.
First Aid Kit:
It is always a good idea to have a first aid kit available for camping trips. Whether you are dry camping or staying hooked up, accidents can happen and it’s important to be prepared with medical supplies in case of emergencies like cuts, scrapes, broken bones, etc..
Portable Waste Tank:
Having a portable waste tank can help you to empty your waste tanks easily. This is great for those times where there aren’t any dump stations nearby.
- A Composting toilet is an additional option.
Tips and Tricks For Successful Boondocking
Here are some great tips for having a successful boondocking trip in your RV.
When you are dry camping, it’s important to make sure that the batteries stay charged and don’t drain. Try using a solar charger or generator if needed. Also, try having an emergency exit plan in case of emergencies like bad weather conditions or mechanical problems with your RV. That way, everyone will be safe no matter what happens!
It is not always easy to conserve water. Make sure to use a collapsible bucket or basin when washing dishes. Turn off the water frequently when showering. These tips will help you to make your water last longer when boondocking.
When dry camping, conserving power is key. Use LED lights that will last longer and produce less heat than normal bulbs. Turn off appliances when not in use so you can preserve your battery life for later on during the trip. Tips like these are essential to having a successful boondocking experience!
Know The Laws:
Only stay in areas that you are legally allowed to stay in. Make sure to check the laws in your area so you don’t get in trouble with local law enforcement. Don’t overstay your welcome. Don’t use your generator during hours that you are not allowed to.
Tell Someone Where You Are:
Make sure to tell someone where you are going and when you plan on returning home.
Don’t Leave Pets Unattended:
Dogs can often get in trouble while boondocking by getting lost, stolen, or even hurt if not supervised properly. It’s important to keep an eye on them at all times so that everyone stays safe.
Stay In Touch:
Stay in touch with loved ones when you are camping off-grid. Be safe. Make sure to have a radio, cell phone, or satellite device so you are able to communicate with friends and family.
Have a Plan:
Make sure that you have a plan for any emergencies. Make an emergency exit strategy or list in case of bad weather, mechanical problems with your RV, etc.
It’s important to be prepared when boondocking. Have all the necessary items and supplies ready beforehand so nothing is forgotten while out on the road.
Leave No Trace:
Make sure to leave your campsite as you found it. Make a plan for trash and waste management so you can pack up and leave without leaving any trace behind of your visit. If you bring pets, clean up after them. Do not damage any of the natural environment, plants, or items.
Conclusion To Boondocking Essentials
Not everyone is cut out for the nomadic lifestyle, but if you are looking to try something new this year or next with your RV, consider dry camping. No hookups? No problem! With these tips and tricks, you’ll be ready for any adventure that comes your way! Happy Camping!
Hello! My name is Cortney. I am 45 years old. I live full time in a 33 foot airstream trailer with my husband of 21 years. I run my own business out of my tin can and love living small. I have two grown kids and three pets. I have worn many hats including mental health counselor and truck driver. My husband is prepping for retiring from the Navy in the next five years. He has been serving for over 22 years faithfully.