Crockpot cooking in a campground?

Discussion in 'Campground Etiquette' started by paulberard, Aug 6, 2013.

  1. paulberard

    paulberard New Member

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    This may be a stupid question, just a warning....

    I am planning a long camping trip and have decided crockpot dinners are going to be my saving grace. Until, that is , I remembered about this bear situation.

    Ok. We are camping in the Manitoba Whiteshell for a week-ish and I have meal-planned around my old, faithful crockpot. I figured it would be great. Throw everything into it in the late morning, go to the beach, and come home to bbq or fire-grill a few extras for a wholesome delicious meal. I am embarrassed to say I never thought of wildlife coming to the site throughout the day. I know the smell would lure fellow campers, so why not Smokie The Bear??

    I can't imagine leaving the pot in the car while it cooks, baking coconut chicken or rootbeer-pulled-pork into the vehicle upholstry.

    How bad an idea is it to leave it in the pup?
     
  2. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    A very bad one.

    Food should not be stored, prepared or eaten in a PUP. Leaving the crockpot cooking unattended all day would bake those smells into your tenting, curtains and bedding as well as be unacceptable according to the bear safe rules of all major parks. Beyond bears, that aroma could attract racoons, skunks, weasels, squirrels and many other unwelcome "guests."
     
  3. BarbaraFaith

    BarbaraFaith New Member

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    I've thought about cooking in the crockpot while camping, but just haven't. I would do it outside, just like I cook on my outside stove. However, we just camp at private campgrounds. I probably wouldn't if I was camping at a state park, etc. where there were animals.
     
  4. yetavon

    yetavon everything is better around a campfire.

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    We have before, but always outside. In beer county I would say no.
     
  5. paulberard

    paulberard New Member

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    Ok ok, sort of the responses I thought. I've cooked in one outside several times, and wow does that smell travel!! Perhaps we'll stick to that. I'm thinking we'll set up a lonely table away from the camper and cook there. Animals will be attracted to all the smells of cooking throughout the whole campground, not just ours, but at least this way our pup won't be destroyed.
     
  6. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Check with the campground staff to see if leaving an operating electrical appliance unattended all day is OK. I suspect it is not.
     
  7. jayco1997

    jayco1997 New Member

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    well just an idea but maybe you could prepare your crock pot meals ahead of time and freeze, then when its time to eat just heat them up. I would probably store in the seal a meal bags/vacuum bags and then just boil in water to heat.
     
  8. 77starmaster

    77starmaster New Member

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    wife has ours on the stove that's hooked on the side of the pup. I fish etc. and she hangs out around camp so a eye is kept on the pot. Dinner is always awesome! Italian sausage (hot) onions, peppers and let it simmer for 6 hours. Sausage falls apart in the bun that's loaded with the onions & peppers. WOW [:)O]
     
  9. paulberard

    paulberard New Member

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    This is a really good idea. I actually think we will be only cooking the rice and oatmeal in it this trip. Leaving the meat for a bbq. Too far into the wilderness this trip.

    But It's a good way to keep your food frozen and extend my meal plan for a couple more days. We don't have a freezer, just a teeny fridge and plug in cooler, and those long trips are tough to plan for. Thanks!
     
  10. paulberard

    paulberard New Member

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    We leave our heaters on while fall camping or a fan in the summer, And our cooler is electric and left all weekend.... Not sure if this would be an issue.

    On a side note, with 5 small kids between 2 families, we rarely are away from the sites for longer than an hour or so...
     
  11. paulberard

    paulberard New Member

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    Thanks for everyone's replies :) Feeding a large family while camping without a freezer option can be a challenge I enjoy. My crockpot has become a very good friend and time saver! That being said I will use caution according to the campground we are utilizing each trip! Happy camping!
     
  12. teejaywhy

    teejaywhy Active Member

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    Is there really anywhere that is not beer country ??

    [:D] [}:)]
     
  13. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Everywhere I've ever camped is beer country!
     
  14. mamabean5

    mamabean5 Well-Known Member

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    I use a crockpot all the time at our campsite. I place it on top of my outside stove, attached to the side of my pup. We do not camp in bear country (beer country-yes, bear country-no) and have never had a problem with critters disturbing it. If we were at a campground known for animals in the campsites, I certainly would not take the chance. At night, I place it on my indoor stove, position a small fan overhead to blow the steam out the window, and wake up to a wonderful hot breakfast. Using a crock pot liner, clean up is almost non-existent and the meals are delicious. [:)O]
     
  15. galangal

    galangal New Member

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    I don't see how this is much different from cooking in a dutch oven at camp?
     
  16. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    The issues are that: A) It was to be inside the PUP and B) It was to be unattended.
     
  17. TX_F2

    TX_F2 New Member

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    In bear country no, but I respectfully disagree with UT on the other points.

    Popups that come with stoves, and even ovens are made to be cooked in, that's why they come so equipped. With proper ventilation and cleanup, you won't saturate the food smells into the canvas.

    We use a crockpot once in a while and there are no food smells in the canvas or pup in general. When used inside (mostly winter time) we set it on the stove cover and open the window a bit to vent the steam. In the summer we usually place it on the outside stove cover because it does put off heat and we try to keep the inside as cool as possible in those TX summers.

    As far leaving the crockpot on and unattended I don't really see that as an issue (again talking about non-bear country), 99.9 % of every RV in the campground leaves the AC running unattended during the summer when they leave their camper to go hiking, swimming, sight seeing, ect. I can tell you that with triple digit summer temperatures being the norm here in TX, nobody turns off their AC when they leave the camper. In the winter everyone usually leaves the heater on when they are gone for the day, they don't turn it off every time they leave the campsite. Never saw any campers burned down, ect from doing that in all the years I have been camping.

    We have never had a problem leaving the crockpot on unattended (inside or out) and came back to a bunch of animals gathered around the campsite.

    Now one thing we do both inside and out of the pup when using the crockpot is to plug it into a surge protector and then plug that into the outlet.
     
  18. canuckblues

    canuckblues Member

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    A dutch Oven would work well in bear country
    Better than a crock pot
     
  19. generok

    generok Well-Known Member

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    Our entire state is bear country. I cook in a crock pot, in the PUP. Now, I don't do it in the more remote places, but if I've got hook-ups, it's generally a little more civilized. I also fish all day, and come back to a warm meal waiting to be had. I normally put it in the sink, in case it spits a little and it's a metal bin.

    I don't worry about leaving it on and leaving... that happens millions of times a day with crock pots all over the world.

    I also don't worry about smell penetration. Since 1995, it has been subjected to every possible scent from bug dope, toothpaste, food eaten on rainy days, dogs, spills, campfire smoke... the scents are endless. Bears are attracted to ANY scent, so I honestly don't worry about a pot of stew I make in it this weekend attracting a bear next month. It is practically impossible to make a PUP scentless, you just do your best to limit the free meal smell coming out of it when the bears are thick.
     
  20. tvketchum

    tvketchum New Member

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    The difference between a dutch oven and a crockpot is the crockpot is on for hours and hours unattended, whereas the dutch oven is over coals for a shorter period of time with (drooling) attendants standing by.....
     

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