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Many people fancy escaping the typical life routine, hitting the road to find beauty somewhere and experience something new. There is nothing as fun as leaving the town and going on a wilderness adventure! But since the usual noisy campsites surrounded by crowds of people can be tiring, travelers can always go on an amazing wilderness adventure without experiencing crowds of other noisy campers. This is what people call boondocking, and although travelers new to RVing may not be aware of the concept, it is a fascinating camping experience. So, what exactly is boondocking, and why do people love it?


What Is Boondocking Camping?

RVers use the word boondocking to describe going free camping for a night or for some days in remote places, where amenities such as water, electricity, and sewer are not available. The word is fun to say, and some travelers may think it means going on an adventure in some open land. While it may sound challenging, boon dockers don't go too far from civilization, and people actually love it. Boondocking simply means free camping. Travelers planning for a holiday road trip, perhaps with family or friends should definitely opt for boondocking as it is a perfect alternative for a standard camping tour.

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Origin Of Boondocking

The word “boondocking comes from the term, “boondocks,” originating from the Philippine word, “bundók” meaning “mountain.” Popularly known as the “boonies,” the word arrived in the U.S. through soldiers during the Philippine-American War that occurred between 1899 and 1902. It is not hard to understand why the word has become so popular, and people now enjoy boondock camping (dry camping). Typically occurring in an undeveloped location, boondocking guarantees a fascinating wilderness adventure experience.

Going On A Safe Boondocking

There is a concern about whether boondocking is a safe type of camping. Well, boondocking is safe for travelers who are prepared adequately for such a wilderness adventure. One should ensure they pack the essentials, including water, food, a first aid kit, and a power bank as there is no electricity. Travelers must ensure they gas up their RV vehicles, enough to take them through the whole boondocking period. This kind of camping can be unsafe if travelers experience medical emergencies. Letting other friends and family members know where one is planning to go is essential because most remote areas have network problems, and contacting someone can be a problem. A good alternative is purchasing a satellite phone - so one can reach out at any time. First-timers are more likely to face a gas problem – and the only solution is to fill the vehicle and carry a jerrycan - so they don't get stuck in the middle of an unknown location.

Another common safety problem is the car's battery running flat. A solution is carrying adequate power banks. When traveling in a cold environment travelers should pack enough warm clothes. Finally, having to face accidents in the wilderness is the worst part about boondocking. Be sure to pack a first-aid kit and at least know the route to the nearest hospital.

Why People Love Boondocking

The main reason why many people love boondocking is to reduce vacation expenses. Travelers will only spend money on acquiring an RV suppose they don't own some and the cost of gassing the vehicle, depends on where one is planning to go. Another significant expense will be on food that covers the entire trip. People opt for boondocking because they don’t have to spend a fortune like in built-up campgrounds. The good news is there are many spots where tourists can stay for free. The worse travelers can go through when boondocking is paying a small fee, but it’s still much cheaper than normal camping.

Where To Go Boondocking

The most popular boondocking destinations are on public lands in undeveloped locations – and that's why it's perfect for people looking to get away from crowds. There are public lands allowed for boondocking by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, most of which are situated on BLM grounds, along the secondary roads. Most of these lands are not always marked, and travelers should ensure they are familiar with the rules set for camping at the free sites. It would be great if one conducts some research if they want to go boondocking in a specific location.

  • Resource: Boondocking.org

Related: 10 Most Beautiful Campgrounds Near Mackinac Island

How To Boondock

How a traveler wants to boondock depends on the number of days they are planning to stay. Most tourists boondock to save money when moving through different destinations – a night stay is more convenient in this case. One-night boondocking is possible in rest stops, Walmart stores, or truck stops – but campers should check if it’s allowed before parking. Travelers don’t have to plan a lot for a one-night boondocking because they may have access to drinks, restrooms, and food.

Travelers planning to go boondocking for days should prepare well and look for a nice public area where camping is allowed for longer periods. Tourists will need to gather all the information required, including getting familiar with all the rules set to guide campers in the free public lands. One must also ensure they gather all other supplies, including adequate freshwater, enough food, and power banks.

Whether one is going to boondock to reduce expenses or for fun, preparing well for the wilderness adventure is crucial.