Many people wonder what "Boondocking" really is and why we love it so much. So, here it is if you're curious.. It is also known as dispersed camping or dry camping.
Meaning: Being out in the middle of public land (some areas need permits), with no hookups of electric, water or sewer.
We we like it?
- Wide open land (fun to explore)
- No close neighbors (watch TV as loud as you want, no barking dogs or screaming kids next to you, and no looking in someone else's windows like an RV park)
- Quiet (except the sounds of coyotes in the distance, maybe a few distant roads or generators).. Most mostly very quiet at night
- BIG very dark skies with no light pollution! - This is our favorite. No pesky street, house or barn lights.. Farther away from the city reduces light pollution and gives us a spectacular view of the night sky!
- Did I say quiet??
In the photo below, we do have neighbors about 1/4 mile away. They introduced themselves to us the day they moved in. The 'boondocking community' is a very close-knit group of people that watch over each other. When someone leaves for a day excursion, the others around that person automatically keep watch.
Our RV Facts:
- Power: When we set out on this journey, we hoped to help with disaster relief projects, so we set up the camper with solar. It has 1200w of solar on the roof and 4 Li-Ion batteries. On a sunny day, it could regain as much as 70% of its batter life. We usually use about 50% battery life in one day, which means we're usually back to 100% battery life by night. Basically, we can do just about anything we want as if we're plugged in. This will come in helpful when we're staged in a disaster area that has no power.
- Tanks: We have a 60-gal fresh tank, 2 grey tanks totaling 87 gallons, and a 43 gallon black tank. We always empty our black & grey tanks at the previous campground and fill up with water there are at a nearby pump station.
- Usage: Each shower takes 1-2 gallons of water per person. Dishes usually take 1-gallon/day, and flushing & misc take up 1-2 gallons. If we're frugal with the water, we can last about 2 weeks without hookups. However, we've only stayed 10 days once, and we still had about 15 gallons left. When boonocking, we just make adjustments. Paper plates instead of our Corelle, quicker showers, etc. This makes it more like camping instead of living. Most of the time, we're out hiking or taking excursions so that means even more water savings.
- Night: Imagine it being so quiet that your ears hurt! That's what it's like in the wilderness. The soothing sounds of howling coyotes or the gentle breeze is all it takes to fall asleep. We almost always have our windows open.
So, maybe some people think we're living more like hermits.. I'd like to see it as enjoying nature to its fullest. Being out in nature without the chaos of life is extremely comforting and de-stressing.
Hope you enjoyed the run-down of boondocking! Let me know if you'd like to know more.