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Discussion in 'Boondocking' started by Family Travels, Jan 11, 2021.
Not liking people.
I love boondocking and prefer it. We can bring our very little children camping and our 2 dogs and not have to worry about our neighbors or if the babies wake up in the night waking people. Our dogs can run around and have fun off a leash. Much less rules so you can listen to music when you want, I can keep my generator on when I want and not worry about quite hours. Before covid it would be nice to have neighbors from time to time at a campground but now kind of awkward. I hated paying a lot of money to camp at certain places to be squished in like sardines. When we boondock we usually have another family come with us so we can still socialize and not feel insolated.
Two apps I have are FreeRoam and The Dyrt.
I agree with everything that Toedtoes said, but especially with this quote. The more we spend connected these days the more we lose connection with the world and people around us.
Almost all of the above reasons I would agree with. For me, the campgrounds around me may as well be boondocking. While some have paved roads, the biggest improvement is a vault toilet (which I really do enjoy on occasion). So being off on my own is just a step further. My biggest reason for isolated boondocking is so that the dogs don't have to be on leashes. After that, my next biggest reason is temperature - 1 hour from my home, I can go up 3,800 feet and drop 20 degrees off the high for the day. Even in July and August, it drops down into the 40's at night for a WONDERFUL night's sleep. However, with this comes only campgrounds with vault toilets and no electricity. Then you add in what others have said about the quiet, no light, etc. For our area, it also means I can bring a tiny chain saw and cut whatever trees have fallen for firewood. Unlike gladecreekwy, I am not looking to get away from people entirely or I would head up his way for more isolated camping. I split my time about 50/50 between the above mentioned campgrounds and off on my own.
i use the app Campendium here in Colorado and have been very happy with it. I have found numerous free places to camp. In fact I plan to go check out another location Sunday night.
OK, read all the above posts and boonie camping is definately in our future with our "new" old PUP. Question though...how do I find a spot like you see on the commercials...you know, out in the desert, with the mesa in the foreground, and the beautiful sunset in the background. You are parked on a dirt road with no one around for miles. If I were to just drive until I find the spot, how do I know I won't wake up in the morning looking at a PO's landowner who is pointing a 12 gauge at me for trespassing. I guess what I'm asking is, how do you know it's ok to camp at that perfect spot! Sorry for the stupidity of the question, but I'm a gonna be newbie!
Solitude. Closer to nature.
Use maps. Lots of BLM land in the southwest. Bureau of Land Management are public lands and their website has plenty of maps and information for dispersed camping. Also national forests offer dispersed camping. They often have designated areas called "yellow post sites". We use them here in California in our national forests.
As mentioned try BLM land. Also talk to the local NFS rangers for advice with forest lands (they can also advice on nearby non-FS lands). One thing to remember is that you need to pay attention to local weather habits - in the wrong location, a sudden summer rainstorm can result in a flash flood, etc.
I suppose each situation has its own definition. There is “true” camping, where one is alone in nature, enjoying the beauty and quiet, maybe pushing some envelopes be it with a hike, bike or boat. There is camping while traveling, with your camper as your home away from home. For that, a park with those hookups is good.
The app I use the most is all stays, setting the filters for BLM, county, national forest land, elevations, rv dump stations, and any other thing that may give a good picture of possibilities.
I don’t mind being in a crowded campground if I’m staying one night on a road trip, but as a destination? No, never!
beautiful!! Where is that at??
We have a piece of land on a river and boondock. The site has no power or water hookups. However I have 3 batteries. Two group 24s wired in parallel to run lights, water pump, furnace, radio, charging phones, etc. And one 34 group for a cpap machine. I use solar (100W) to keep the batteries topped up. And I have a 2000W inverter generator for backup. Where we live, an air conditioner unit is not necessary. There's a spring not far away for all our water needs. We love off grid camping. Love the peace and quiet. For us, camping in a campground surrounded by a sea of humanity is not our idea of getting away from it all.
For those listing letting their dogs roam free and for those who might be looking at this as a reason try boondocking:
Please be careful. I've known dogs that have gotten into trouble out there under those circumstances. Know your dog and make sure he/she can follow certain behaviors before trying (recall under any circumstances and staying with sight of you are two major ones). A dog that follows its nose blindly can end up lost, fallen in a hole or river, or even caught up in old rusty barbed wire. A dog can stick its nose into rocks and get bit by something venomous very quickly. A dog can see wildlife and take off after it. And so on.
Even if they are great at home, be careful. The wilderness has a lot going on that can cause them to forget rules.
Most of my reasons have already been stated above, but to add to it: if you don't plan way in advance, it's almost impossible to get a reservation at a state park or forest service campground around here. If we want to do some last minute, unplanned camping, we head down a forest service road and look for a secluded pull out (also getting harder to find around here.) We bought a pup with lots of clearance specifically so we can get to harder to reach areas where we won't see anyone else. We camp to get away from it all and generally don't need/want any electricity or hookups.
A relative of ours lost a smaller dog (Yorkie type) while camping after they let it roam free. They think it was trampled or kicked by a deer. They just found it dead near the campsite after they had let it off leash for a while.
Pretty much every reason I can think of why we go off in the wild for camping has been mentioned. I will say we don't exclusively boondock, we end up doing a mix of the usual FS campgrounds and some boondocking. Since the wife and daughters like the convenience of vault or flush toilets, we end up camping at the campground about 75% of the time. We do a trip or two a year in the backcountry though. If I am lucky enough to get drawn for a hunt, then I too usually go backcountry. A good website for camping information and has quite a few free sites and backcountry sites listed is https://www.campendium.com/ Good luck, hope you enjoy the travels!
With the logic of the OP why even leave the house? Campgrounds are the ghettos of the forest unless you have mobility issues they should be avoided at all costs.
In addition to all the reasons mentioned repeatedly throughout this thread, this is among our favorite. The journey itself is as much fun as the destination. While we've had some stressful searches, in our decades of boondocking we've never not found a spot.
As for resources - There are plenty of camping-specific sites and apps, as mentioned, but if you've got time to geek out on maps consider some of these. They do a great job of identifying public lands (and more granularly NFS vs. BLM vs. state, etc.)
Roads of Colorado (Not sure how many states this is available for, but it's been our go-to for years. Have worn out multiple physical copies!)
caltopo.com (My personal favorite these days - Lots of info and data you can layer onto the map.)
Get out there - away from the people, away from the noise, away from the lights!