Showering while Camping

Discussion in 'Port-A-Potties / Cassette Toilets / Bath Houses' started by Wrenchgear, Jun 24, 2020.

  1. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

    Messages:
    3,459
    Likes Received:
    718
    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    Location:
    5 Star Eagle Camper
    In the middle of the whole Covid thing going on, Ont. Prov. Parks decided, for the time being at least, that they will let us use our reservations that we made back in Feb., and go camping this summer. Yay!! Outhouses and comfort stations will be open, however all showers will be closed for the entire summer. They don't want to put staff at risk by having them go into the showers and try to clean them between every single person taking a shower. So what's the alternative? That's the big question. First of all, I don't shower every single day while camping, I'm in the lake quite often, and I believe that seems to take care of things. BUT, if you're going through a rainy stretch of weather, its always nice to jump into a hot shower after 3-4 days of cold rain. We also camp for a 3 week stretch, so obviously, I do normally take numerous showers during that time. Ontario Parks recently released a set of rules for showering this summer. It can be found at http://www.ontarioparks.com/parksblog/what-to-do-when-showers-are-closed/
    In short it says that you can only shower inside your camper where the grey water can be stored in a tank and disposed of properly at the dumping station. OR, jump in the lake and scrub with fresh lake water - no soap. Period.

    So, no soap in the lake, no biodegradable soap in the lake, no soap of any kind hitting the ground at the campsite, no soap anywhere.

    You are not allowed to use an outdoor shower at the campsite because of soap getting on the ground, but nothing is mentioned about collecting the grey water at an outside shower at the campsite. I've seen some pictures where people stand in a kiddie pool to collect the water while showering, then dump it into buckets to haul away to the dumping station. Wonder if that would be allowed?

    I guess this is a check mark in the + column for the darkside campers having an indoor shower.
     
    HappyTraveler and Snow like this.
  2. eoleson1

    eoleson1 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,821
    Likes Received:
    1,126
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2011
    Location:
    Macomb County Michigan
    With all of the required social distancing, there's no need to shower! [:D]
     
  3. jmkay1

    jmkay1 2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah

    Messages:
    5,637
    Likes Received:
    2,453
    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2013
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    The other alternative is sponge baths if they don't allow you to collect the gray water in a kiddy pool. Bit of a pain, but it works if you have no other alternative. Baby wipes are also good especially for a quick wipe down after a hike.
     
    HappyTraveler likes this.
  4. generok

    generok Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,782
    Likes Received:
    1,073
    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2013
    Location:
    Anchorage, AK
    I enjoy a shower, especially if I am sticky or covered in bug dope. I struggled for a few years not taking a daily shower while camping. Washcloths and baby wipes never seemed to cut it for me. In the PUP, I got used to it after a few seasons. We went to the darkside in 2018. While I CAN shower, I still find I can skip now and again, and if I am boondocking, I need to be careful about filling up the grey tank. There's mounting evidence that stripping the skin's microbiota every day isn't healthy, so consider yourself on the cutting edge of medical research.
     
    HappyTraveler and kcsa75 like this.
  5. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

    Messages:
    3,459
    Likes Received:
    718
    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    Location:
    5 Star Eagle Camper
    I will admit that if I'm covered in Mozzie spray, I hate crawling into bed. I always need to wash it off somehow at the end of the day.
     
    HappyTraveler and generok like this.
  6. firepit

    firepit Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    890
    Likes Received:
    1,075
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2020
    Location:
    Nebraska Go Big Red
    Our showers are open...And trust me...I feel cleaner going for a swim vs using those nasty,dirty campground showers.
    I cringed at the thought of going number 2 in my new porta potty until this last weekend.
    I walked into the bathroom ( Cleaned every hr now ) and said..."The porta crapper doesn't sound too bad anymore"
    I am looking at a TT possibly next yr...But if that doesn't pan out i will be installing a outdoor shower.
    With all the zombies over crowding campgrounds right now i will be swimming and calling that my shower.
    I have to admit that those who told me the porta potty was no big deal...Were right...I am kinda liking it right now.[:D]
     
    HappyTraveler and Orchid like this.
  7. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

    Messages:
    3,459
    Likes Received:
    718
    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    Location:
    5 Star Eagle Camper
    [QUOTE="firepit, post: 1347634, member: 115688")I feel cleaner going for a swim vs using those nasty,dirty campground showers.[/QUOTE]
    Quite often I would agree with you on that one, sometimes the showers can get pretty bad. I read what you were saying in the thread about those screens for on the top of a 5 gallon pail to filter out all the big stuff from lake water. I agree that lake water, (depending on the lake) is usually good enough for me. The lakes where we camp in northern Ont are crystal clear, so I have no problem with it. If someone was super concerned about it, you could throw a cap full of javex in the pail of water to take care of things.
     
  8. CampingFamily1

    CampingFamily1 Active Member

    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    240
    Joined:
    May 12, 2007
    Location:
    Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN
    We just got a Wolfwise popup shower tent.

    Our outside shower on our popup only sprinkles lightly, not like a powerful shower, but its better than nothing. Some of the state parks we have reserved have showers open, others are still closed until further notice.

    I cut an old piece of tarp to 4x8' so I can double it up and use as a ground cloth, to protect the thin but nice floor that comes with this model.

    It just came in and is very well constructed to last long and wil be easy to set up and take down.

    I also bought an extension hose for my outdoor shower and a union to the existing outside hose. The threads on this union are quite loose fitting (definitely NOT NPT), but its a low pressure connection that stays watertight with the gaskets on both ends, and this union is lightweight compared to a heavy galvanized union from the Ace Hardware store.

    Hopefully this relieves some of the pressure on the folks trying to get into the campground showers. We won't be taking long. relaxing showers with this. It will be a quick rinse off with a little sprinkle of water.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2020
    HappyTraveler likes this.
  9. kcsa75

    kcsa75 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,867
    Likes Received:
    1,977
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas City
    I guess I'm the exception. I don't shower daily when camping but I'm not afraid of the showers. I could shower in the TT but I enjoy real shower as opposed to a navy shower. I usually shower in the morning right after the cleaning lady is finished. It's also a lot cooler since the sun hasn't been beating down on the shower building all day. I wear flip flops or water shoes to shower, pull on some clean duds then return to the camper to shave, brush my teeth etc.

    In between, I'll use a wash rag to freshen up in the camper.
     
    firepit likes this.
  10. firepit

    firepit Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    890
    Likes Received:
    1,075
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2020
    Location:
    Nebraska Go Big Red
    Flip flops are a must in public showers...i hit the shower early before everyone else is up.
    But i got no problem going a couple days between showers likewise....but the showers last weekend were nasty.
    Heck its camping i say...not a wedding
     
  11. liz.s

    liz.s New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    5
    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2018
    I'm in Ontario as well. I fully don't understand the ban on outside showers. And the fact that it's only mentioned on that blog post, and no where else on the site/rules and regs has me believing that it is unenforceable. Obviously if your dumping grey water on the ground they can fine you, but if you're collecting your used people water, how is that different than used dish water?
     
    Wrenchgear likes this.
  12. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,793
    Likes Received:
    1,517
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario
    $20 for 5 minute shower time wrench :p

    Honestly, set something up behind your pup, keep it small, use at night only and quietly dump is comfort station after midnight.. even it it's a tub and a sponge..
     
    HappyTraveler likes this.
  13. CampingFamily1

    CampingFamily1 Active Member

    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    240
    Joined:
    May 12, 2007
    Location:
    Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN
    Sometimes we've showered with a quick rinse in with our outdoor shower in a swim suit. You don't leave it running all the time. Just for a quick rinse off. Refreshing rinse, minimal and organic/bio-degradable shampoo/soap.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2020
  14. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

    Messages:
    3,459
    Likes Received:
    718
    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    Location:
    5 Star Eagle Camper
    Once again, I'm not too worried about it all, its the other family members that are wondering about washing their hair. Most of my hair fell out years ago, so I don't have to worry about washing it. I have a 22 gal grey water tank here (that I have never taken along), but it has no wheels or tow bar on it to pull to a dumping spot. If it's too full, I'll never be able to lift it. Yes, we talked about washing up at night to keep out of the view of the rangers.

    Will the $20 do 2 of us at the same time? Hmmm.....
     
    Sjm9911 likes this.
  15. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,793
    Likes Received:
    1,517
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario
    Family hair washing discount $17 per person for 5 minutes, plus your spawn will take the tote to dump station when it's full and refill the water tank.

    Did you ever have hair? I ment to ask Momma wrenchgear last Thanksgiving.

    All this time off work and you haven't put wheels on it yet... tisk tisk...

    Ummm you can try, It's a skinny man shower, so I have to stand sideways.. might be good for a laugh.. yes we'll hear the cursing from outside.. LMAO
     
  16. CampingFamily1

    CampingFamily1 Active Member

    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    240
    Joined:
    May 12, 2007
    Location:
    Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN
    We have a dish tub we use to collect the water sometimes when we wash outside and when the ground is muddy and doesn't have good drainage near our camper. Then we hurl the grey water far into the weeds to spread it out and prevent a squishy area of water around the back of our camper. Maybe we should use this and pour it into the dump station.

    [​IMG]

    Or any larger container from Walmart or Amazon would work, like this one on Amazon
     
  17. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,793
    Likes Received:
    1,517
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario
    99% of all campgrounds I have stayed in , in Ontario, multiple U.S. States all have strict rules against this and here in Ontario fines to go along with the ticket.... People doing this is why so many campgrounds are only allowing self contained trailers in, specially this season..

    Please dispose of the grey water in a proper designated location. Ask the campground office if you are unsure.
     
    Sjm9911, kitphantom and Strawhouse like this.
  18. firepit

    firepit Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    890
    Likes Received:
    1,075
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2020
    Location:
    Nebraska Go Big Red
    I just get up at like 2am and run a hose to the wooded area and let er rip.
    Its only cheating if you get caught!!!.
    "OK I AM KIDDING"
     
  19. Strawhouse

    Strawhouse Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,599
    Likes Received:
    608
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Location:
    Muskoka, Ontario
    There is no difference, as stated in that blog that Wrench linked in his original post http://www.ontarioparks.com/parksblog/what-to-do-when-showers-are-closed/:
    Can I have a sponge bath on my site?
    It’s all about the soap. If you’re sponging off on your campsite, and soap — even biodegradable soap — gets on the ground, that’s not okay. If you’re just using a soap-free water to wet your washcloth, that’s just fine.

    Make sure the water is disposed of properly: dump it carefully down a vault privy or dispose of it at a trailer dumping station (depending on your park), just like you would your dishwater.’

    Basically, no grey water—from showers, dishwater, etc.—should ever be dumped on the ground. This is not a change in policy, just a reinforcement of current Ontario Parks regulations.

    Unfortunately, Ontario Parks documentation—including individual campground literature—does not adequately address the proper disposal of grey water, resulting in many people dumping their dishwater on their sites. We’ve learned a lot about the impact of grey water on the environment since we camped in the 50s & 60, when this was considered acceptable—and the norm.

    Hopefully, the current reinforcement of these guidelines will result in the proper disposal of grey water now and in the future.
     
    Sjm9911 likes this.
  20. Steveo4090

    Steveo4090 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    341
    Likes Received:
    300
    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2020
    Location:
    Lancaster PA
    I have thought of using a clothes washing machine tray for the outside shower so you could have a drain. You'd need to elevate it so it would drain into a bucket (small blue boy or whatever) but that could be done easily with 4 or 5 milk crates upside down.
     

Share This Page