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Old 06-25-2020, 08:52 PM   #1
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Default Boondocking tips and tricks -- let's hear 'em!

Several of us are serious boondockers -- let's share some of our tricks!

I'll start -- to save water (a scarce resource), we use paper plates and plastic utensils as much as we can. I am the dish-doer -- I use discarded paper napkins to "pre-wipe" the frying pan before washing, so that less soap and water is needed.

More tips to come -- please chime in!!
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Old 06-26-2020, 08:09 AM   #2
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I'm sure I have more, but here's a few.
  • We put paper towels, napkins and paper plates in a separate bag after use, then use that as kindling in our fire. Just make sure it's wadded up so you don't get any hot ash escaping.
  • Plan on having 5 gallons of fuel for your vehicle for every day you're out and about. If you can, get jerry cans for extra fuel and remember, your tow vehicle is basically a portable generator.
  • When using an ice chest, put meats/hot dogs in a waterproof container, like the kind used to keep your cell phone dry while rafting. That way no meat/hot dog juice will leach into your ice. Ziploc baggies will leak. Pre-freeze your bottled water to help keep things cold.
  • If you're going out into a remote place, let someone know where you plan to be, when you'll be there and when to expect you back. Try to stick to that plan. Most of the people who get lost take a spur of the moment trek and didn't tell anyone where they'd be.
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Old 06-28-2020, 11:18 AM   #3
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ALWAYS be aware of your surroundings and those nearby....both animals and people.
If anything gives you an uneasy feeling - relocate.
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Old 06-28-2020, 04:15 PM   #4
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Finding boondocking sites in the national forests: download the MVUM maps, open Google Earth, and then "fly" along the forest roads looking for established campsites -- usually with fire rings as visual markers!

Then be sure to scout your potential sites when you get there before towing a trailer into the site -- roads that look smooth on Google Earth are often rougher than they appear.
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Old 06-29-2020, 01:17 PM   #5
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Always safe to have a weapon when legal, or pepper spray of Bear strength, extra batteries for flashlights, over the counter meds-aspirin, hydrocortisone, first aid kits, benadryl, antacids, consider all possible needs and customize to fit your specific needs.
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Old 07-02-2020, 04:29 PM   #6
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About water. We've always been told to use water to put out campfires for the night when we camp in Utah. Never leave coals hot enough you can't touch with your bare hand. So on my old pop-up, the grey water just drained into a container. I use that grey water to help put out the fire, saving as much fresh water as we can. (we use biodegradable soap)

When we leave camp I used the grey water to flush out my portable toilet into a camp outhouse/bathroom before having to use fresh water to finish the flushing.

Of course, since most of us have grey and black tanks already in the trailer, this might not apply. Most will use their grey water to flush the black tank pipe after dumping. But it's what I did when I didn't have fancy plumbing in my trailer. And if you're boondocking, you might need to get rid of the grey water sooner than black.
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Old 07-02-2020, 04:44 PM   #7
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I do not mess with those little green propane bottles for a cook stove, lanterns, etc... I take an extra 20 lb tank and get adapters to fuel all those things as well as some longer fuel hoses or T-fittings. I use LED lanterns.

Those little green bottles are good for a weekend, but most people toss/recycle them once empty (you can refil them, but you'll hear stories about how it's not a good idea.) I've never seen a reason to refill those little guys, I've tried with mixed results, but there are kits/fittings to do so if you're so inclined.

I try to cook outside as much as possible, so I don't get the inside smokey or hot.
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Old 07-02-2020, 05:58 PM   #8
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More about water -- bring extra empty plastic six gallon jerry cans in your tow vehicle. When you go out for the day, you can often find water in a campground or a ranger station (ask first!). Then it's time for some weight training -- lifting those cans and pouring them into the fill spout on the trailer -- fun!

We put together a little funnel to make that job easier -- it's a two liter soda bottle, cut on the bias, with a hose on the end of the bottle. Instead of having to pour into the fill spout itself, I pour into the cut end of the bottle/funnel. It looks home-made, but it works just fine!
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Old 07-02-2020, 07:21 PM   #9
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I bought this... one for fuel and one for water. Works pretty well. 10 gallon jerry cans of fuel are NOT fun to lift.

https://www.harborfreight.com/batter...ump-63847.html
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Old 07-02-2020, 08:26 PM   #10
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Jeff, that's why I get six gallon jugs -- only 48 pounds! I can still lift that much, most of the time.
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Old 07-05-2020, 01:21 PM   #11
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Xerofall mentioned
Pre-freeze your bottled water to help keep things cold.

I still use the steel sided Coleman cooler we had on the first boat. The best trick I have for an ice box is to stock up on the "2-pound" nut canisters. You've seen them in the snack aisle, square-ish plastic bottles with a huge, round, screw-on lid. We use those things for everything from cookie storage to ice.

Ice. Fill the canisters and freeze before the trip. I can fit up to eight in that Coleman cooler with room for a gallon of milk, a couple two-liter soda bottles, half a gallon of OJ, and little stuff around the edges. When the ice melts, all but the condensate stays in the cannister and the huge lid means you can refill it with bagged ice. (Don't dump the cold water, btw). Your bagged ice lasts longer in a water bath than in the air of a cooler.
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Old 07-05-2020, 02:06 PM   #12
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We always carry a large cooler in the camper for water/soda so don't have to get into the frig frequently and leaves it free for food/steaks/Ice Cream, etc.

No ice, just use those "re-freezable packs" that have a 'jell type substance' in them. Wife gets Rx couple times a month that is packed to keep cold during shipping so have a lot of them. When they 'melt in the package' just pop into freezer and re-use. No melted ice in the cooler.

Always travel with 2 Honda Eu2000i gen/inverters w/dual feed Berg system https://www.rvpartscountry.com/Honda...llon-Tank.html The 6 gallon tank gives up to 36 hours run time plus carry an extra 5 gallon container of fuel.
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Old 07-05-2020, 07:30 PM   #13
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We "up-armored" our ice chest with extra insulation -- reflectix on all sides and top and bottom. With three frozen two liter bottles in the bottom, it'll keep the groceries cold for a week, even in the summertime.

A Yeti works better, but it costs a fortune.
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Old 07-05-2020, 07:45 PM   #14
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I use 4, 5 gal buckets, make a stack of them and use the 10ft fill hose to gravity fill the tank. It works well.
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Old 07-06-2020, 09:26 AM   #15
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I set the jug on a cooler on top of a table so it's higher than the inlet, then use a short piece of hose to siphon the water in.
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Old 07-06-2020, 12:28 PM   #16
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Checked the dual feed Berg system . Great idea but $200 ? Basically a plastic gas tank with a 2 hose hookup. Am I missing something?
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Old 07-06-2020, 12:37 PM   #17
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As far as keeping things cold we just use the refrigerator that came in our trailer. It even has a freezer that can make ice. It's gas & elect and works pretty good when there's no hookups. The only issues we have (boondocking)is the smallish black & grey tanks so we conserve and use wisely.
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Old 07-06-2020, 12:50 PM   #18
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mjp, the fridge is fine for a limited amount of food. But we like to bring up to ten days worth of food from home -- especially now when going to the market can be dangerous. So that is why we pack the extra food in a cooler.
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Old 07-07-2020, 06:53 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjpguy View Post
Checked the dual feed Berg system . Great idea but $200 ? Basically a plastic gas tank with a 2 hose hookup. Am I missing something?
I searched the net and did find one on sale for some less.

The hose fittings are quick couplers for easy/fast hookup and NO LEAKS!!

Yes, a bit on the expensive side but quality usually is.
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